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Thursday, May 13, 2021

The student guide to staying in shape

During springtime, college students are given a rare opportunity to take advantage of both outdoor and indoor activities in hopes of getting in shape for summer.

Justin Manipis, building supervisor and trainer at the Wade King Student Recreation Center, said college is the time people develop habits that will stick with them for the rest of their lives.

“Go outside. Use the arb. Go on a hike somewhere. Go hike Oyster Dome.”

Justin Manipis, building supervisor and trainer at Wade King Recreation Center

Manipis said starting slow and building your way up is the easiest solution to getting into a workout routine, which ultimately will keep your body in good shape.

“It doesn’t have to be getting in [the rec center] six days a week for two hours a day. It can be as simple as starting to walk to school,” Manipis said. “Even going 10 minutes, three days a week. Starting to build slowly and progressively. Utilize the rec center. We pay for this rec center as part of our student funds, so take full advantage of it.”

Manipis said to take advantage of the Bellingham area, especially during spring quarter, when the weather gives students the opportunity to be active outdoors.

“Go outside. Use the arb. Go on a hike somewhere. Go hike Oyster Dome,” Manipis said.

Although working out is a big part of staying in shape, youth development professionalist of the Boys & Girls Club, Jianbo He said, watching your sleeping and eating habits is just as important.

Illustration by Shannon DeLurio

“Get enough sleep at night, and eat a lot of fruit and drink a lot of water,” he said. “Make sure you also have meat in your life, if you are a meat-eater. If not, then make sure you eat various types of vegetables.”

Dr. David Hansen, staff physician at the Student Health Center, said another tip for staying healthy is to stretch, which can help students avoid injuries.

“Simple stretches before and after you workout can help keep you active and pain-free,” Hansen said.

Hansen also said to get involved in sports clubs offered by Western. 

“There are 18 intramural sports groups and 23 sports clubs, so there’s lots of activities on campus,” Hansen said.

Hansen also said the First Step program the rec center provides can help students begin a healthier lifestyle. This program gives students  one-on-one time with a personal trainer.

“You can get three evaluations by a personal trainer, and they can help guide you with both diet and exercise,” Hansen said.

Eating healthy and exercising, while beneficial, are not easy things to jump into. Fitness coordinator of Campus Recreation Services, Ron Arnold, said the best way to begin working out is to find a buddy to work out with.

“If you can be exercising and be social at the same time, it’s more beneficial,” Arnold said. “It’s easier to make [exercising] a habit if you have someone else who can hold you accountable.”


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