HEALTH & FITNESS
KEEPING FIT has hit a new level of easy so now there’s no excuse for not curbing the takeaways and focusing on the fitness.
Whether it’s DVDs, the latest app or website, it’s more straightforward than ever to keep tabs on the carbs you’re burning while you’re climbing the never-ending stairs to your next lecture. You can even get online advice on what to eat on a weekly basis.
SARRA GRAY keeps you right on how to eat well and get fit on the cheap…
LET’S admit it, our student discount is a big part of the reason we came to uni in the first place, and when it comes to putting together your own get-fit-kit, it does not disappoint.
Your student card and handy apps have been essential each semester when finding your uni style and many are now offering money off in the more fitness-friendly retailers than ever before!
GYM clothes are the only lounge clothes that are completely acceptable to wear in any situation.
Does anyone else throw on a hoody and some trainers to go to the shop or to a lecture and pretend you’ve just done a long session in the gym?
Thanks to stars like Rita Ora it is also totally fine to fashion these clothes into your night out outfit.
So basically, anything you buy is already a bargain, but if you’re looking for quality attire for hitting your workout, your student discount is most useful at ASOS and Urban Outfitters.
Both these retailers sell the big names in fitness such as Adidas and Nike for men and women, selling clothes, shoes and accessories at 10% off for students.
Adidas also offer a 15% student discount on their website. Most shops have their own sportswear collection: check out New Look, Matalan, Superdry and Missguided.
IF you are interested in really enhancing your workout, or even want to see what all the celebrity madness is about on Instagram, you will probably look into buying some supplements including the ever more popular protein powder.
Loads of these sites are now here for us students! MyProtein, The Protein Works, PhD Nutrition and Maxi Nutrition all focus on selling protein powder, protein-filled snacks and drinks, and vitamins and powders aiming to enhance your workouts and overall health.
Now ladies, the fear of bulking because of protein-filled products really needs to stop. It’s a myth that you can get massive by having the odd protein shake, so relax. The range of products on offer can seem a bit daunting if it is your first time using any kind of supplement, but once you figure out what one can benefit you, this saving is so helpful.
MuscleFood offer a 10% discount and is a great site for buying good quality meat.
YouTube is amazing when you’re trying to find a way to make your favourite meals – and even foods that look too indulgent to even think about (yes,that triple-stuffed double chocolate fudge cake) as healthy versions.
You can even make low-sugar Starbucks drinks that are just as satisfying as the store-bought ones. Also it means you don’t have to leave your house extra early or spend ridiculous amounts on a drink!
Just type in the food that you want to make with the word healthy, and watch a list of colourful, short videos appear that give you enough guidance that you begin to believe that you can open your own top restaurant. It really as easy as that.
Online Paid Memberships
ANYTHING that isn’t free can make you sceptical. What if it doesn’t work and you’ve wasted your money?
The best way to get over this fear is to do a quick social media check of the programme and see what everyone is saying, because you know you’ll get the truth that way.
And knowing you’ve paid for something makes it harder to give up. All that hard earned cash can’t go to waste, right?
Instagram is full of those types of programmes being advertised, they are on the rise and are sure to become even bigger this year as an obsession with health grows.
In fact, it’s already started, with the fame of stars like the impossibly fit Kayla Itsines, who is making it onto magazine covers worldwide
because of her online Bikini Body plan.
It comes with a full and simple nutrition plan, and her workouts are only 7 minutes long which seems like an almost irresistible deal, and easy to fit around a life of lectures and socialising.
Another great one to try for students is ex-TOWIE star Lucy Meckleburgh’s take on the typical celebrity DVD.
She has created an online page, Results with Lucy, that makes the celebrity fitness lifestyle seem simple and attainable.
There is a range of plans of different lengths depending on how many weeks you want to stay with them for.
These give varied workouts and meal plans to be followed day-by-day, so no extra thought has to be put into your fitness.
Weekly shopping lists and motivational emails are also included, making this the lazy gal’s dream.
The page offers student discount on all packages, but also has a Student Plan, which is tailored for the amount of room you might have to workout at uni or college, and the amount of money you have to spend on healthy foods.
Everything is covered with as little spending as possible, yay!
IT’s a safe bet that the beginning of every new year will come with a flurry of new fitness DVDs.
Again you can search to find a workout that fits the areas you want to work and the time you want to spend working out, but an easy thing to do if you’re not sure is to look at the chart and reviews.
Celebrity DVDs are becoming more credible. No, really!
You no longer just get a before and after picture and be expected to do the same workout every day with no real concept of how long the results will take.
Now you can follow the celebrity on Snapchat and Instagram and see exactly what they eat and do along with their DVD to keep in shape.
Charlotte Crosby is a great example. A quick snoop through her online photos and you can see her getting healthier each week until she reached her goals and released her fitness DVD.
Her 3-minute Belly Blitz was the best-selling fitness DVD ever when it was released in 2014 and it was made up of twelve 3-minute sections that target the whole body – you can do as many as you like which is perfect for that 15 minutes free before class!
This year she released a second DVD which lets you see she has been able to keep the weight off, and is giving you the opportunity to progress.
The release of the 3-minute Bum Blitz has also meant that her Belly Blitz has gone down in price in many retailers, so what better time than now to give it a go?
Following the success of that, her Bum-Blitz is also likely to be extremely popular this year.
If you want something a bit more traditional, Davina McCall has given us fitness DVD after fitness DVD, and this year has been no different. Each one promises improved results, and the fact that they continue to sell just shows their effectiveness.
Her older ones are so cheap now so it could be a good place to start if you don’t want to spend too much.
AS if we need any more reason to be on our phones. There are apps that can be downloaded to track your fitness to your food.
These apps come with frequent updates which add new features and make them as easy to use as possible.
A great food tracker is myfitnesspal. For most foods, you can just scan the packet’s barcode and all the nutrition syncs to your personalised daily requirements.
It also acts as a blog with great articles on fitness and cheap and easy-to-make recipes.
For the iPhone addicts among us, the most modern models track your steps and flights of stairs climbed each day.
You can also add the calories you eat in a day into it, but apps such as myfitnesspal are easier to handle doing this. The app Fitbit is an alternative to this that allows you to log and track your workouts, weight loss and even your sleep in order to give you achievable health goals.
Map My Run can help those looking to take up outdoor activities such as running, walking or cycling by tracking your distance, progress and remembering possible routes.
Similarly, the 7 Minute Workout “Seven” app is free to download, and gives you seven minute workouts to do, tracking your progress over seven months.
This one is perfect for those of you who love a challenge. It makes keeping fit a game, as missing workouts loses you hearts, and if you miss a certain amount your progress returns to zero and you have to start again.
One of the easiest ways to stay fit and reach your goals as a student is by using online videos.
You’ve probably heard of this before, and even tried the odd 5-minute video after over-
indulging, but the content available is becoming more helpful and diverse every day.
A simple YouTube search gives access to a range of fitness videos that are free, and by choosing the top hit, it can be assumed that the video you end up on will be pretty good.
You can target whichever area of your body that you feel like, and you can almost always find a video to suit your own fitness level, the equipment that you have, and the amount of time that you want to spend.
A lot of YouTube ‘celebs’ also include free plans that can be followed.
Try Tone It Up, a channel which features videos to work each part of the body as well as a series of videos to be followed such as the
wedding series and the bikini series.
Another great workout vlog is Blogilates run by instructor Cassey Ho.
Even American beauty Vanessa Hudgens has been known to do a video or two off of this page.
If it’s good enough for her it’s good enough for me!
By signing up to the Blogilates mailing list, you get free monthly workout calendars sent to your email that tells you what videos to do on every single day of the month!
For the men out there, YouTubers such as Buff Dudes also give out free downloadable workout plans for those trying to bulk or cut and demo videos.
There are also some great lifestyle and wellbeing programmes that include feel-good stretching to assisted meditation – something I’m sure we all feel the need for as the semester goes on!