Student Wellness Services

Before You Go

Due to the lack of professional staff on sight to assist you, before you get started in the fitness areas we want you to take a look at this physical activity readiness questionnaire. If you answer “yes” to any of these questions, call your personal physician or healthcare provider before increasing your physical activity. We not only want your experience to be fun and rewarding, but also a safe one.

  1. Has a doctor ever said that you have a heart condition and recommended only medically supervised activity?
  2. Do you have chest pain brought on by physical activity?
  3. Have you developed chest pain in the past month?
  4. Have you on one or more occasions lost consciousness or fallen over as a result of dizziness?
  5. Do you have a bone or joint problem that could be aggravated by the proposed physical activity?
  6. Has a doctor ever recommended medication for your blood pressure or a heart condition?
  7. Are you aware, through your own experience or a doctor’s advice, of any other physical reason that would prohibit you from exercising without medical supervision?

Note: If after you begin exercise you experience conditions such as dizziness, light-headedness, disorientation, exhaustion, or other signs or symptoms that put you at risk, stop activity and contact a member of the staff.

Getting Started

Benefits of Exercise: Need an excuse? We’ll give you a few.

  • Aids in weight control and management
  • Elevates metabolism
  • Aids in digestion
  • Boosts energy and stops you feeling tired
  • Decreases the tendency for clot formation in the blood vessels
  • Helps lower bad/elevate good cholesterol
  • Helps lower blood pressure
  • Can help protect against cancer, stoke, bowel disease and diabetes.
  • Helps you get a good nights sleep
  • Improves your sex life
  • Increases oxygen in the blood
  • Protects joints
  • Increases muscular endurance
  • Strengthens bones/muscles
  • Reduces stress, improves mood, combats depression

The 5 most common mistakes starting out are:

  1. Too much too soon: Follow the 10% rule- never increase your exercise routine more than 10% per week.
  2. Lack of balance: Don’t just do one activity. Each week you need to incorporate aerobic (cardio), strength (weights) and flexibility (stretching) training.
  3. Pick an activity that’s right for you: Fitness shouldn’t be pain. If you have muscle, bone or joint problems you may need to speak with your doctor before deciding what movements are right for you.
  4. Fuel up: Food is your fuel for exercise, so learn to make good food choices rather than starving yourself. Also, be sure to drink plenty of water (>8 glasses daily).
  5. Stick with it: There are times you may want to quit and times you may come up with a handy excuse, but stay at it….fitness is a lifestyle.

Note: Please review the operational decals posted on equipment to ensure proper use before you begin use.

Components of a Successful Cardiovascular Workout:

Warm-up (5-10 min) Can be anything from a brisk walk to just performing the exercise activity at a slower pace than what you plan during your workout. This is the period that gradually increases the speed to prep the body for the next phase of your workout. This activity will reduce the risk of injury and maximizes performance.

Conditioning (20-60 min) This is when you should be working hard to achieve maximum benefit while avoiding overexertion and fatigue. When exercising, breathing should be rhythmical and comfortable. If you become “winded” and need to gasp for breath between words when talking, then your exercise intensity is too high and should be reduced.

Cool Down (5-10 min) Slow down the pace of your work-out until breathing returns to a pace that is not labored. If you don’t do this you may experience dizziness due to blood pooling in the lower extremities and a lack of blood flow to the brain.

Flexibility (5-10 min) You should perform at least one stretch for each major body part. Hold each stretch for at least 10 seconds without bouncing.

Weight Training for fitness and safety

  • Check with your doctor- If you are older than 40 and inactive; talk with your doctor before starting a weight training program.
  • Breathe- Your blood pressure can increase to dangerous levels when holding your breath. Exhaling during the lift and breathing freely can prevent this.
  • Seek balance- Work all your major muscles (abdominals, legs, chest, back, shoulders and arms). Strengthen the opposing muscles in a balanced way (front of the shoulder/back of the shoulder)
  • Lift an appropriate amount of weight- The amount of weight you lift should make your muscles feel tired after 10-15 repetitions. A weight that causes fatigue at 12 repetitions is an effective stimulus for muscle strength and toning.
  • Don’t do too many sets of exercise- Completing one set of exercises to the point of fatigue is all you need to obtain benefits. Additional sets aren’t necessary and could contribute to injury.
  • Don’t rush- Don’t jerk the weight up. Lift and lower the weight in a slow, controlled fashion.
  • Rest- Give your body a day to recover between workouts of the same muscle group.
  • Be consistent- Three workouts a week will build muscles and just two will maintain the strength you’ve gained.