In-Dorm Exercises

by Molly Scott

Don’t be afraid of the gym… but, just
saying, if you were, we’d get that.

Trekking to the gym every day is tough. Whether it’s pouring rain outside or lack of motivation to step inside Dodge or LeFrak, there are tons of ways to work out that don’t involve a gym! These dorm-friendly exercise routines are ideal for those of us who are embarrassed to work out in front of others or just like the privacy of our own rooms.

Cardio
You can get your cardio in Riverside Park or Central Park without even setting foot in the gym. Jogging, or even just power walking, is a great way to get your heart rate up and sweat away those calories! Try to do this for at least 30 minutes a few days a week.

You can also get a fairly good cardio workout in your room. Jumping jacks and high knees are probably the sanest ideas. Jumping jacks are self-explanatory, but high knees are a little trickier. March in place while trying to get your knees as high as they can go (sounds simple, but try it for a minute); the faster you go the harder your heart will pump. The amount of time you can sustain on these exercises varies from person to person. Try to do a set, nonstop, for a minute. Then, as your stamina increases, up your time to 2 or 3 minute sets.

Grab a buddy!

Strength Training
When you are finished with cardio, strength training is a must. All of these sculpting exercises come from an online bride’s workout guide, but they are good for busy college students as well. The upside is that if you do them, you’ll be ready to rock a strapless white dress!

Pushups (works the abs, chest, and arms):
Get into plank position and keep your back straight, feet shoulder-width apart, and head up. Count to three as you lower yourself down as far as you can go, and repeat as you rise back up. You can also add another dimension to this routine by using the end of your bed or your desk to do pushups against, instead of the ground.

Forearm plank (works the abs and shoulders):
Get into that same plank position as before, but place your forearms flat on the ground, palms facedown. Hold for 30 seconds, and then as you increase your stamina try it for longer. If you want to take it to the next level and challenge yourself, try stacking your feet heel-to-toe, instead of side-by-side.

Stationary Lunge (for quads, hamstrings, and glutes):
Stand with your feet about a leg’s distance apart, right foot in front of the left. Let your arms hang straight by your sides. Bend your right knee down to a 90-degree angle without letting your left knee touch the ground, then rise up.

Leg Drop (works legs and core):
Lie on your back with your arms straight along your sides. Lift one leg to hip level, keeping it fully extended with your foot flexed. Drop it slowly till it hovers above the floor, then bring it back up. If you’re ready for the next level, raise and drop both legs simultaneously, and tuck your hands underneath your head.

Just as a helpful tip, the CDC recommends for adults ages 18-64 that 2 hours and 30 minutes of brisk walking (or the equivalent) is necessary. They also encourage doing muscle-strength activities at least twice a week. If you don’t want to walk, you can also do 1 hour and 15 minutes of running or jogging every week. Another option is the stationary bike, in half hour increments at least 3 days a week.

Molly Scott is a sophomore at Barnard and Girl Talk Editor for The Nine Ways of Knowing.

Images courtesy of Don’t Do That and That’s Fit.

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