Stay fit tips for festive time of year

Students dedicated to a healthier lifestyle use the Fitness Centre as a part of their workout routine.
Students dedicated to a healthier lifestyle use the Fitness Centre as a part of their workout routine.

It’s not always easy to stay in between those two lines of temptation and reason, especially between Thanksgiving and Christmas when it’s considered the festive time of year. It’s during these times we feel it’s acceptable to indulge in good food with loved ones and worry about waistlines later.
For some students, maintaining a healthy diet and workout plan isn’t hard. But for those who are new to the game, it pays off to try and be healthy no matter if it’s scary.

Ken Babcock, director of athletics at Durham College and UOIT, says that it’s good to be in the best shape a student can achieve while enrolled in full time or part time courses.

“Everyone’s ability to want to be the best, whatever their level is. How much training, how much can you do to assist you in being better,” he said.

Babcock says students are watching what they put into their bodies much more than they used to.

“Spend a lot of time training, spend a lot of time ensuring they’re making healthy choices to make them better. And the student athletes that do that they obviously find out that’s a better pathway for them to succeed and enhance what they do. And that’s a trend that’s happening right now,” he said.

Babcock suggests students enjoy the experience associated with wellness. The recreational centre is a great way to start, he said.

“Relaxing with whatever sport they want to play, or getting involved with our student personal trainers and our fitness staff. Through classes, regular programs, cardio and we think that’s the best way to handle these things,” he said.

He added that students’ fees cover the charge of the facilities, so it’s very accessible.

“We really believe our fitness centre is a non-threatening centre,” he said.

He said the centre is strategically setup to alleviate stress for anyone new to the gym experience.

“These facilities are open for everyone, and we want people to take advantage of that,” he said.

Angie Wood, fitness coordinator, agrees.

“Probably one the best things you can do is continue to workout during these times,” she said. “Even though it’s getting busier, maintain your workout schedule, and if you don’t have one maybe it’s a good time to build one.”

She says even taking a walk around campus would be a step in the right direction.

“Sometimes I find we do better when we have more things on our plate and more things on the go,” she said.

Wood says that energy expended is good, and it will relieve stresses and raise energy levels.

“If you make time to workout you’ll find you do have more energy,” she said.

Like Babcock, Wood says students should try to find something they enjoy from the wellness centre.

“Do something you enjoy, because you’re more likely to adhere to that. Again if you hate running on the treadmill, then don’t run on the treadmill because you won’t stick to your plan,” she said.

Sylvia Emmorey, campus nutritionist at the Campus Recreation and Wellness Centre, also recommends watching the nutritional value of the food students bring or eat on campus.

“Healthy eating is mostly about planning, the preparation and the shopping. So making sure to have three small meals and three snacks,” she said.
Emmorey said even though the bad foods may be easier to pack, or cost less, they can harm the body.

“They seem like they’re affordable at the time but overall when we look at the prices of foods that can be purchased out in the grocery store it would almost be more cost effective to do that,” she said.

Emmorey said late night snacks or meals are definitely a bad idea.

“[Students need to] Try to avoid the late night, and avoid drinking.”

She also recommends proper portions on the plate should be half vegetables, one-quarter carbohydrates and one-quarter meat or proteins.

She believes that student’s fitness and diet are a good place to start, and it’s never too late to try and be healthy.