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Weber State University students lift weights in Swenson Gym. (Joshua Wineholt / The Signpost)

As a Weber State student, you may feel like you are constantly performing a high-pressure balancing act. With classes looming over you throughout the week, how can you possibly balance work, relationships and family, let alone find time to work out?

Making a trip to the gym is often something that takes a backseat in student’s lives. Performing exhausting activities seems like a normal part of the work week, so why add an additional physically demanding activity?

Over the years, multiple studies have shown that one of the easiest ways for you to balance all of these commitments is actually adding in an exercise routine. One such study, performed at University of Texas, Austin, found that exercise was proven to relieve stress, boost mood and fight depression.

It’s also well documented in various scholarly journals and studies that exercise has been linked to increased memory retention and focus levels.

“In a study done at the University of British Columbia, researchers found that regular aerobic exercise, the kind that gets your heart and your sweat glands pumping, appears to boost the size of the hippocampus, the brain area involved in verbal memory and learning,” said Heidi Goodman, executive editor of The Harvard Health Letter.

So there are definitely benefits to working out, but that still leaves the question of how students make the time.

Jose Patino is a student currently studying Exercise and Sport Science at Weber State. Five days a week, he manages to squeeze a workout into his schedule, and one day, he hopes to be a strength and conditioning coach for a university.

“I make it a priority in my life, just like going to work and school,” Patino shared. It’s the opposite of what you would think. “If I don’t work out I’m more exhausted. It’s a getaway time to not worry about other things, and it makes me happy.”

Patino’s advice is to start small if you are considering implementing a new exercise routine.

“Don’t worry what other people are thinking about you,” he said. “You can’t start so intense and expect your body to be at the top.”

Access to Swenson Gymnasium is free for WSU students, and the gym offers weekly group exercise classes, such as yoga, pilates, cycle and Zumba. They also host specialized exercise classes like HIIT, TRX strength and cardio circuit, which are also free with your Wildcard.

If you workout independently, Weber also maintains 3,900 square feet of strength and cardio facilities so you can enjoy a quick sprint or weight session during your day. Students can even schedule sessions with personal trainers for one-on-one help with their individual goals or just to learn some new workout routines.

You don’t have to be a gym rat to begin a fitness routine. Every student’s preference is different, and while some prefer weight lifting, others enjoy long-distance running. If you break a sweat on a hike or in the pool, you can take advantage of the locker rooms and the showers.

When overwhelming feelings toward work and obligations begin to creep over you, maybe consider taking a trip to the Stromberg Complex to release some endorphins and smash your stress.

 

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