This week is This Girl Can Week. This Girl Can is a celebration of active women who are doing their thing no matter what, helping women to overcome the fear of judgement that is stopping too many women and girls from joining in on exercise and sports. If you are eager to get more active but don’t have the time or money to invest in an expensive gym membership or attend a sports club, here are our top ten ways to get active without breaking the bank.
1. Kitchen workout
If having time to get active is one of the barriers you are encountering, there is one moment in the day you know you can fit it in- while cooking. As long as you keep an eye on the oven and don’t let the pasta boil over, there are some simple exercises you can do to get you fit without much effort including wide leg squats, single leg lunges, jumping jacks, counter push ups and dips. And your reward: a home cooked dinner.
2. Take the stairs instead of the lift
Yes, we said it. Walk up the Augustine House stairs rather than take a lift. We know what you’re thinking: that’s crazy talk! But think about it this way: each set of stairs has at least 20 steps and there are 3 sets of stairs so that is at least 60 steps per journey to the top. Then multiply it by however many times you go up and down to Atrium Café to get your coffee fix and it adds up to a lot of steps. Your steps counter would be proud.
3. Take a stroll on your break
When you’ve got a half an hour break during lectures, we know how tempting it is to head straight to Touchdown Café for your morning sausage roll. A more active alternative would be to spend the time going on a wander around campus. You could make it your aim to explore somewhere you’ve never been before, or count the number of windows you see, or take 20 minutes to live in the moment and get some headspace. And think of the calories you’ve saved when you resisted that pastry!
4. Unleash your inner hooper/ skipper/ body builder
Getting bored with squats and planks? How about investing in dumbbells, a hula hoop or a skipping rope? Just one purchase and you’ll have it for the rest of your life! Not sure how to properly hula hoop? There are plenty of tutorials on Youtube that can help you become a pro at whatever you choose. You don’t even have to sacrifice your Netflix time- you can do all of these things while binge watching Friends reruns.
5. Take a longer route to the supermarket
You’re hungry and you have no food in. It can be tempting to go to the nearest supermarket, however why not get a walk in at the same time and go to a supermarket further away? If you live at Parham, walk down to Sainsbury’s instead of ASDA or if you live in Wincheap, go to Tesco in town instead of Aldi.
6. Stand instead of sit
During essay time, your body can get worn and achy after sitting down for long periods of time. If it’s starting to wear you out, opt for a standing desk instead. There are standing desks with computers near Laud Touchdown and Student Support at Augustine House which are free to use by all students and staff. Working standing up will help your posture and even the smallest shuffle of your legs will benefit your health.
7. Wake up to yoga
Did someone say downward dog? Get up ten minutes earlier and fit in an early morning yoga sesh. Early morning yoga may help regulate your sleep rhythm, boost your metabolism, prevent injury and achiness through the day and lead to a mindful day. It doesn’t even need to be long- even a ten minute Youtube video can work wonders. Even better if you have an actual dog to yoga with.
8. A spoonful of sugar helps the exercise go down
Do a Mary Poppins and combine exercise and chores with your favourite thing: music! Play your favourite playlist and get your tasks and daily workout done at the same time. Do standing exercises while washing the dishes, walking lunges while vacuuming or squats while folding laundry.
9. Challenge your housemates to a race
Instead of getting the bus, walk to uni. Even better, run! Why not turn it into a social occasion and get your friends and housemates involved. You could even challenge them to a race: whoever reaches campus first has to buy this week’s loo roll.
10. This Girl CAN get active at Christ Church Sports Centre
Calling all Christ Church girls! Did you know you can access a week’s FREE membership at Christ Church Sport including gym access, sports sessions and fitness classes? Yes you can! Between 19th- 25th November, we are offering free sports and fitness sessions to women at the University- no experience required, just turn up ready to take part! All activities are open to any students or staff of the University identifying with the term ‘woman’, inclusive of gender identities.
To find out what's on offer, including free gym access, sports sessions and excercise classes, simply sign up for your FREE This Girl Can e-pass. You will receive an email e-pass and a guide to the week of activities!
Sign up for your week's free membership here