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5 Easy Ways To Keep Fit At Uni Without Crying In The Gym

We’ve all been there – you’re stood in the corner of a room full of sweating bodies, grunting dudes, and clunking metal. Welcome to the university gym.

It’s normal to be intimidated by the gym. For most students, they’re places you’ve not really thought about much before the ever-depressing realisation that your body isn’t as slim or as healthy as it was 2 years ago (big thanks to £2 pints and VK Blues!)

The good news? There are plenty of inventive and cheaper ways to be exercising without the need to go to the gym, where you may or may not end up crying.

1. Run, people, run!

We’re starting with the obvious. Yes, you can go out for a run. This may seem as daunting as the gym at first, but running is far more flexible and can be done in as little or as much time as you are physically capable. What’s better is that you’ll find it easier to grab a flatmate (running is far less of a commitment) and pull them along, stumbling around the riverside paths and parks of your uni town or city. An added bonus is being able to find different routes and really explore your surroundings. You may even find a new pub or two.

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2. Go Alcatraz.

Prison workouts are a thing. And you know that little box room you call home for just over 6 months of the year? Well, it probably has similar dimensions to a prison cell. Just by throwing together 15 to 20 minutes of bodyweight movements (including squats, lunges and press-ups) at a fairly high pace, you are going to be replicating the results you’d get from a gym. You can even drown out your grunts with Survivor’s Eye of the Tiger turned all the way up, and jump in the shower straight after your workout.

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3. How NEAT is this?!

NEAT is a tidy acronym for Non-Exercise Activity Thermogenesis. So basically, it’s any activity that burns calories, but isn’t formally classed as exercise. Whilst you’re not going to get mega slim and ready for a marathon with this method, it will benefit you in the long run. All that NEAT requires is you preventing yourself from being too sedentary, so maybe switch an episode of Game of Thrones off and go for a walk to the city centre. Or rather than getting a taxi back from the supermarket, carry all your chicken nuggets and cider home instead. Even doing the hoovering counts. You don’t really have any excuses anymore…

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4. Take up a sport.

This might also seem as daunting as entering the gym, but generally, sports have much more of a welcoming social side than a load of lone wolves picking things up and putting them down again. Were you ever good at any sports in school? Because that’s the obvious place to start. Failing that, boxing and MMA (mixed martial arts) have a whole host of benefits when it comes to fitness and require little time or equipment for maximum benefits. What better way to get to know people than learning how to beat them up?

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5. Go for a daily kick around.

There’s always that one guy or girl who loves football in your halls. They will also have a ball. Take it (and them) to a local park and just have a run around. Passing to one another for an hour, or if you are feeling brave, an inter-flat match, are great ways to get you up and exercising without really knowing it’s happening. Even a game of catch with a tennis ball can be an extremely cheap and easy option.

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