Get on your bike!

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It’s easy to be motivated to get fit if you can afford the shiny equipment that builds amazing, equally shiny abs. However, not everyone can enjoy the luxury of having a gym membership which insists on taking at least a couple of hundred from you each year – especially those of us reliant on our student loans. But do not despair! There are other ways to maintain trim fitness without breaking the bank and burning your pockets (which is just plain messy).

Let us start with the cheapest and best cardio workout around: running! You can do it anywhere. Okay, maybe not on the motorway, but it is pretty much an all-environment friendly exercise which is actually better for you when done off the treadmill. With your headphones in it can easily become an outdoors routine. Whether you live in town or on campus there is plenty of grass and pavement to pummel with your trainers.

Secondly, university societies are an excellent budget way to keep fit. There is a diverse number of active opportunities provided, for example: the Athletics Society, Running, Dance, Rowing, Trampolining and Cheerleading, all with membership costs at a tiny fraction of what a usual club membership will be. Also, there are numerous sports teams for each college which are definitely worth even just trying out for, such as football, rugby and hockey, which have enough practice sessions and games to keep you in excellent shape. In joining societies and teams it’s not only supporting your own physical strength, but it also helps fund these groups which rely on student involvement and enthusiasm. What better way to support them than getting involved yourself?

Ways of keeping up your fitness on a day-to-day basis can included walking to Sainsbury’s and getting hench while dragging home bags of alcohol, or walking to get washing if you live on campus and you have to actually leave your building to do this. If you share a flat with a few friends it may be worth investing in a bike to share, which would split the costs and, like running, you can choose when and where you cycle. Also, volunteering or getting a part-time job in town or on campus encourages you to be more active as you have to have at least a degree of dedication in getting to and from specific destinations.

Finally, don’t discount the usefulness of walking to the university from town, or vice versa, depending on where you live. The route is pretty straightforward and takes approximately an hour. Leave yourself a bit of extra time the first few times to test how long you personally take and it can help you meet the sixty minutes of exercise adults are encouraged to take every day – without breaking the bank at all.

There’s always a way around laziness without having to sacrifice economically. Just give it a go!

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