How to Slim Down with the Internet

Many people think the journey to a healthier lifestyle begins with a gym membership that sells all the protein powder, get-fit DVDs and personal training classes “needed” to succeed. Gym memberships provide countless accommodations for people but at a cost most cannot afford. Trust in this that all you need is access to the internet to begin a healthier journey free of cost.

Whether you’re using a computer or a phone, these three websites provide various forms of exercises and routines in an easy-to-use format.

The BeFit channel on Youtube uploads free, high-quality workout videos that anyone can follow along to at anytime and anywhere. The channel provides an overall health experience for people because of its diverse videos that include the various types of exercise, nutritional tips, mobile workouts and music playlists.

The BeFit channel is easy to navigate, and viewers are guaranteed to see results thanks to the directions and tips from top trainers in the industry.

The team behind BodyRock arranges hight-intensity workouts and nutritional tips that users in all levels of fitness can follow and achieve great results. The website reaches out to people through various social media outlets and includes a blog that covers six different topics of a healthy lifestyle.

BodyRock has over 130 workout videos for people to choose from even if you have only 12 minutes to spare. Also, the fitness community is available on Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest and Youtube.

Finally, the experts behind SparkPeople provide customizable workouts in areas of cardio, strength and yoga for people of all ages. The website offers a plethora of videos, and those who want a quick search can use the website’s workout finder to locate a specific workout. SparkPeople advertises for its ability to offer fun, free and effective workouts to the public.

The website offers plenty of workout videos and each is organized by time, exercise type and other attributes under the workout finder.

With the help of these three websites, among others, a healthier lifestyle is just a click away. The internet offers every exercise and nutritional advice imaginable thanks to the guidance of top experts in the industry. Trainers from all over the world are easily accessible online and can help those struggling to reach short and long-term health goals.

Start clicking and find the right exercise routine for you today!



The Freshman 15: A Food Guide

While in high school, students don’t think about the effects of a bad diet or think a quick run will keep the weight off. I’m here to tell you that neither of those ways of thinking are going to cut it in college. Those of you who have been here for a year or two already know, maybe too well, about the freshman 15. If you haven’t gotten to college yet or you’re one of those jerks with a fast metabolism, just know that the freshman 15 is real and beware.

One way to avoid the unwanted weight gain is to start an exercise regimen and maintain it. However, exercise isn’t the only method that will keep the weight off. Hence the phrase, you can’t outrun a bad diet. As cliche as it sounds, the phrase resonates truth. A healthy lifestyle begins on the inside with a well rounded diet, and then comes the exercise.

Having a well rounded diet in college can seem difficult because of the amount of preparation and cost of healthier food items that are needed. As college students, you’re all too familiar with scheduling out plans for the week to prevent overlooking assignments and due dates. The best way to shop and eat healthier is to plan ahead or make a food diary of everything you’re consuming. (Guess what, there’s an app for that.)

By keeping a diary or journal of your diet, it’s easier to see what changes need to be made. If you’re unsure of what type of diet is right for you, there are numerous websites that can help you decide. For instance, the nutritionists at BBC Good Food understand that men and women have different requirements when it comes to a well rounded diet.

The freshman 15 can happen to anyone, but the best way to avoid it is to start taking better care of your body. Search for a diet and exercise regimen that correlates to your body type and goals. Understanding what needs to go inside the body before testing it’s fitness abilities can help students reach a healthier lifestyle faster and without injury.


Running For a Cause: 5Ks

An exercise routine doesn’t always have to be a mundane task completed on the same days at the same time each week. We’ve gone over the variability of bodyweight exercises, but another great way to switch up a routine is to run a 5K. You don’t have to be an expert runner to sign up for a 5K because running isn’t a requirement. Participates can walk, run, skip or even crawl to the finish line if they so desire.

The importance of a 5K is more than just getting out and being healthy, but about running (or walking) for a cause. The money raised for each event is donated to various foundations that both brings awareness to the cause and contributes to finding a cure. Most 5Ks are themed and past events include The Color Run, The R.O.C. Race (Ridiculous Obstacle Challenge) and The 5K Foam Fest.

The term 5K is short for five kilometers, which is the length of the run. In American terms, the length stretches to about three miles. Three miles isn’t that long of a run or walk. If you plan to run the event, think about each mile as 10 minute segments. In theory, you could run the event in 30 minutes give or take a little if you take any breaks. Remember that walking isn’t frowned upon at the event because what matters most is the cause of your walk or run.

In January 2016, I ran the Color in Motion 5K for the Epilepsy Foundation of Florida. Personally, I wanted to train for the event so that I could attempt to run the entire course. I stopped twice for short breaks but was able to finish the 5K in about 45 minutes, all while being pelted with colored powder. What an accomplishment! 5Ks are a creative alternative to any workout routine that also gives people the opportunity to give back to the community.

Although the events are not free, the cost isn’t too high and includes the purchase of a t-shirt for the event. Also, the money goes towards a great cause and that’s more than enough reason to workout for a small price.

3 Tips for Your Stadium Workout

Stadiums (also known as running bleachers/stairs) offer more than just seats and concession stands, but the perfect destination for students to workout no matter the season. Stadium workouts combine the cardio of running with bodyweight exercises that help build strength and endurance. The combination provides students with a full-body workout without having to leave campus or bother with clunky machines.

Cardio alone will not keep the freshmen 15 away. Bodyweight exercises build lean muscle with strength training while adding other health benefits along the way. The types of stadium workouts are vast thanks to the variability of bodyweight exercises, but choosing the exercises is crucial.

If you’re new to the stadium workout or found it too overwhelming to try, consider these three tips to get the best out of your next routine.

  1. Find a partner

Like any fitness routine, stadium workouts are more bearable when a friend or partner is there to cheer, sweat and cry alongside you. Exercising alone can have many negative impacts on a fitness routine, especially injury. Look for someone who will motivate you to reach any health or fitness goals you may have and later surpass them.

2.  Choose the right exercises

Finding the right exercises for a routine can be a little daunting once you consider how many there are to choose from. Don’t let the amount of exercises discourage you from continuing with a routine, but simply search for bodyweight exercise routines that already exist. Routines vary by fitness levels and time frames so everyone can find one that is right for him or her.

3.  Pick a time of day

Although the majority of students struggle to balance time for classes and work, finding the time to workout is easier than it seems. Besides off-campus jobs, students spend most of their time on campus typically in class, at the library or dining with friends in the food court. Now, with stadium workouts on the rise, students no longer have to leave campus to  workout. Usually, a stadium is accessible at all times of the day and part of the night. The important part is finding what time is best to workout at the stadium once you consider class, work and the stadium’s availability.

With the help of these three tips, a healthier lifestyle is yet another step closer.

Santa Fe Saints, Rejoice!

Hey y’all,

Today I wanted to focus a bit more on the students at Santa Fe College who are trying to maintain a healthy lifestyle while away from home. I’ve noticed that some students at Santa Fe compare themselves and their experiences to those of students at the University of Florida.

We need to set one thing straight before we continue: The students at Santa Fe are just as smart, beautiful and well-rounded as the students at the University of Florida.

Santa Fe College offers its students a fully equipped fitness center that meets the needs of all students. The fitness center is wheelchair accessible and also includes a multi-gym for students with disabilities.

An interesting feature to the center is a twice-a-week yoga class that’s free of charge! The yoga class is offered on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 5 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. in the gym. Check with the athletic department if you’re unsure if the time and place has changed.

Yoga is a fitness routine that relaxes the mind and the body. And if you’re a college student, then there isn’t a day that goes by that you don’t need a bit of relaxation. Santa Fe students should take advantage of these classes and the fitness center before graduating from the college. A visit to the center a day could keep the doctor away. (Let’s be honest, college students can’t really afford a healthcare plan anyway.)

Most colleges and universities offer a fitness center for students to use free of charge with a student i.d. card. However, if your school does not have one, there is a website that offers different yoga poses and advice for people in all levels of fitness.

The take-home note here is that there are opportunities available for students to workout for free. Whether it’s the student paper, a bulletin or the school Facebook page always try to check these areas for fitness events or updates.



No time? No problem.

Here is a glimpse into a typical college student’s schedule: class, study, work, study, eat, study, sleep, study.

Not surprisingly, students struggle daily to manage their time in ways that would most benefit them. Whether it’s scheduling school, work, volunteer or club events students are losing more and more time to focus on themselves.

Every student should understand the importance of finding time for themselves. Think of it as time to relax and restore your selfdom. Consider this mantra: If you feel good, then you’ll do good. A college life demands 99.9% of students’ attention and it seems like you might not have additional time for yourself, but I’m here to tell you there is time. (Make note of that 0.01% of time that wasn’t mentioned.)

Keep in mind that time for yourself is not limited to fitness and could include reading, meditating, watching TV, etc. But why wouldn’t you want to do something that gets the heart racing and the blood pumping?

The following workout routine can be modified to fit any student’s schedule and fitness level.

100 jumping jacks
3 minute air cycling
30 crunches
30 leg lifts
30 squats
30 lunges
15 push-ups
1 minute plank

Repeat 3-5 times

The workout routine above is quite simple and takes little time to complete. The number of rounds and the type of exercise performed can vary according to any student’s preferences and time. I hope everyone understands what that means, but for those of you who don’t let me explain. NO EXCUSES. Now any student can find time for themselves and add a beneficial workout to their rather busy schedules.

Quick Guide: Yogalates In The Park

One of the key objectives behind A Slender Gator is to provide free fitness to students by way of activities, classes or at-home workouts. Like most cities, Gainesville has a variety of opportunities that offer people the ability to exercise for free. An opportunity I have recently taken with friends is Yogalates In The Park, which is a free class taught on Saturday mornings downtown at the Thomas Center.

For those who don’t know, yogalates is an exercise regime that mixes yoga stretches with pilates moves. (And no, it is not a yoga class that provides free lattes.) Another way of looking at it is that yogalates is an engaging exercise that combines the calming, soothing atmosphere of yoga with the muscle-strengthening techniques of pilates.

Yogalates In The Park is free of charge but there is an option to give donations to the instructor. Typically, the class begins at 8:30 a.m. and lasts for about an hour or two. The instructor incorporates her own instructions and procedures for the class, but also includes the student’s preferences, such as targeted body exercises.

If you are new to the practices of yogalates, bear in mind that if you start a class in the middle of the season the exercises will be very challenging and hard to complete. Like any exercise regime, yogalates has different levels and requires the body to work up to each level. For instance, I am new to yogalates and after my first class my body was sore for at least three days. The exercises were hard to maintain for a certain amount of time because I didn’t have any arm or core strength like the more experienced members of the class.

However, don’t let the challenging aspects of yogalates discourage you from trying out a class. The notion of a free fitness class should be motivation enough to attend but, if it’s not, think of the lean, toned body you will have within a few weeks of taking yogalates.