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TexasDude's avatar

What's a good, quick, daily workout for a busy college student?

Asked by TexasDude (25244points) September 5th, 2010

School has started and I fear that I’m already starting to get a bit flabby. I started falling out of shape over the summer, because the last month or two was mostly sedentary for me, and school being in session isn’t going to make that any better.

My schedule is extremely busy, I’m a lazy-ass, and I’m usually sequestered to my suite studying, reading, or tutoring.

I have been doing my best to eat better, but it’s not enough. I want to cut down on my body fat content, tone up my abs, and develop more stamina/endurance.

Any workout suggestions for someone with a schedule like mine?

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32 Answers

Cruiser's avatar

I love my quick little run I do…Run full-bore wide open like you are being chased by a rabid pit-bull for one minute then walk for one minute. Repeat 4 more times and in 10 short minutes you will have maxed your lung capacity and heart rate 5 times and will have burned up a good slug of calories. Throw in 3 sets of push up and sit ups and you will be toned up in no time!

You gotta want the results as the above workout is brutal at first but after a month or 2 you will love how it feels to run like a deer!

marinelife's avatar

Is there a pool at school? Swimming is good exercise.

I assume you are walking everywhere?

TexasDude's avatar

@Cruiser, that’s a pretty good idea. If I can find time for fluther, surely I can find time to do that. Thanks.

@marinelife, there is a pool, but it’s kind of nasty… it’s also occupied by the swim team 98% of the time. I am walking everywhere on campus, but that doesn’t do much for me, because it literally takes about 7 minutes to walk from one side to the other, it’s so small.

JilltheTooth's avatar

Walk up every flight of stairs you can, any time you can. Then do it again, if you have time.

Fyrius's avatar

Go everywhere either by bike or on foot. And hurry up; habitually jog instead of walking, or pedal away like there’s no tomorrow. It’s better exercise and it saves time.
Go up the stairs with two or three steps at a time. At a run, if you can.

None of that is exercise proper, but it’s a nice bonus. If you want a consistent cardio workout schedule to follow, just set yourself one kilometre to jog, three kilometres to bike, or five stairways to run up. Or something like that.

TexasDude's avatar

@JilltheTooth, all of my classes are on the third floor of this building and it’s definitely a workout climbing them. It doesn’t feel like enough though.

@Fyrius, sounds like cardio is a trend here. I’m going to find ways to take your suggestions to heart (rimshot). Thanks a lot!

Fyrius's avatar

Well, you did ask for body fat reduction, ab visibility, stamina and endurance. That means cardio. :)
Happy to be helpful.

marinelife's avatar

@Fiddle_Playing_Creole_Bastard Could you get a bike and ride instead of driving? Do you have access to a gym?

Fyrius's avatar

Also, you can use the ten minute break during classes (or whatever equivalent you may have overthere) to go run up and down some stairs. It’s also a good way to wake up so you can pay attention again.
That used to be my habit.

CherrySempai's avatar

Does your university have a workout room? I just take a good book or some music to the gym with me and jog on the treadmill/stairstepper for an hour three times a week. Then I try to have a few 10 minute sessions between classes where I do jumping jacks/sit-ups/run in place and it really keeps my energy up.

I think just any time that you want to sit on your couch or take a nap, go to the gym instead, you’ll definitely feel better about it in the longrun. :]

Just don’t work out right before bed, because it’s not healthy or easy to go from one body extreme (working out) to another (sleeping) so quickly.

TexasDude's avatar

@marinelife, I have a bike, but the roads out here aren’t biker safe or friendly. :-/

We do have a gym though. The real problem I’m having is timing. I’m in class Monday, Wednesday, and Friday from 9 am to 3 pm. Dinner is at 5pm and the rest of my night is usually spent reading or doing work on the computer (I have a massive volume of nightly reading and writing. I’m talking 150 pages + of reading and 2 to 3 page written responses every night). Tuesdays and Thursdays, I have to tutor freshmen from 9 to 12 noon and then I have pottery class from 7 to 10pm. The gym is usually conveniently closed in the blocks of time I’m not occupied.

@CherrySempai, see above. Although I think I can try to take some of my reading to the gym with me, like you do. And I definitely know not to work out right before bed… (I made that mistake last year… ick) Thanks though!

TexasDude's avatar

@Fyrius, I can do that. Thanks.

mrrich724's avatar

Just run. It’s perfect. You can do it almost anywhere . . . and you can do it for any amount of time. . .

10 minutes? RUN!

Don’t have time between classes? RUN to class!

TexasDude's avatar

@mrrich724, I’m gonna try it. Thank you.

ETpro's avatar

I do heavyhands. You can do it every day and unlike running, it gives both upper body and legs a full aerobic workout while building some pretty impressive muscle development. See the book, Heavyhands written by Dr. Leonard Schwartz. One of the neatest things is that in inclement weather you can do it in a small space just high-stepping in place.

The Doc designed the exercise to simulate the upper and lower body work of cross-country skiers. Olympic cross-country skiers are some of the most aerobically fit athletes on Earth, and that’s because their sport stresses all their muscle groups. You can start wilh very light weights in your hands, swinging your arms in skiing or for more exertion windmill fashion as you do a high-stepping walk. The maximum weight you should work up to is 15 pound dumbbells. Heaver weights put too much stress on shoulder and elbow joints.

TexasDude's avatar

@ETpro, that’s more along the lines of what I was looking for… an actual routine that I can do indoors. I’ll pick up some free-weights and have a look at that book. Thanks for the info and the link.

ETpro's avatar

@Fiddle_Playing_Creole_Bastard Recommend you start with 2 or 3 pounders. It seems like nothing, but after 10 or 15 minutes of swinging them, your arms will definitely feel the burn. They make special weights for the exercise that are like padded dumbbells with hand guards and screw-on weights on the ends so you can ramp up as your arms gain strength, but ordinary dumbbells work fine.

Frenchfry's avatar

I was going to say buy some weight but they all already suggested that.
I do a mix of Tae bo and pilates. To keep me from getting too fat.

TexasDude's avatar

@Frenchfry, thank you dear.

TexasDude's avatar

Well guys, I just ran a mile with my suitemates. They are working out with me now. I didn’t do too bad. I didn’t time myself, but it was probably around 10 minutes or so, which I guess isn’t bad for someone who has been sitting on his ass for so long.

ETpro's avatar

@Fiddle_Playing_Creole_Bastard You just want to get to where you can come in first in the pack with them running along. Jogging in a group is like being a sled dog. If you ain’t the lead dog, the scenery never changes. :-)

TexasDude's avatar

@ETpro, I actually did pretty well for someone who hasn’t ran in a long time. My suitemates are all sort of athletes too. I’m going again tonight. Thank you, sir.

mrrich724's avatar

a 10 minute mile right off the bat . . . good job! and it only gets better from there.


@Fiddle_Playing_Creole_Bastard I don’t know if this is possible or feasible, but is there a pool near you? Do you like to swim?

I find for myself that a few laps every morning in the pool not only “wakes me up” but energizes me for the rest of the day, while burning calories. Swimming is one of my passions, and it’s an excellent way to keep fit and maintain a good physique and muscle. I’m in my 30s, and I need to exercise and watch my diet too. Personally, I think I look better now than when I was in my teens! Lol.

If you don’t like swimming, how about a brisk walk every morning, or if you’re a night owl, in the evening after you had dinner? The walk ought to burn off some of those excess calories. Take care and good luck in your endeavors to get in shape.

TexasDude's avatar

@MRSHINYSHOES, nope, no pool, as it is nearly always closed or occupied by the swimteam. I do love swimming though. I’ve actually been taking multivitamins, eating better, drinking a ton of water, and running a mile and a half every night. It’s working really well for me. Thanks, though.


@Fiddle_Playing_Creole_Bastard I find that drinking plain lemon water, half a lemon squeezed into a glass of warm water, really helps kick the metabolism and does wonders for the body. The multi-vitamins are a wise thing, especially if you start taking them when you’re young. I’m almost in my mid-30s, but I only started taking a multi-vitamin supplement for men recently. I wish I started in my teens, but I never did.

I encourage my young children (aged 7 and 5) to eat sensibly and exercise. The youngest is morbidly afraid of water, yet her Daddy (me) loves to swim and used to do it competitively. Go figure! Sigh. Lol.

TexasDude's avatar

@MRSHINYSHOES, I’ve actually heard about that. I’ll give it a try. Your kids sound adorable, by the way


@Fiddle_Playing_Creole_Bastard And lemons are cheap too. That’s why they call a cheap car a “lemon”. Lol!

Another tip——carbs after 6 pm. will add on weight. I try to avoid carbs after 6pm, preferring just meat or eggs and vegetables in the evening. I eat pasta and rice, but usually in the afternoon only.

Thank you for the kind words FPCB. Yeah, they are adorable. Well, most of the time. The rest of the time they want Daddy to give in to their ways. ;)

Rayvin14's avatar

@Fiddle_Playing_Creole_Bastard I do the workout called Insanity everyday, and it is only 30 minutes long, and it is a very successful workout. It’s very hard but worth the pain, check it out.

hotgirl67's avatar

Find a place where you can jump rope or safely run for 30 minutes.

jaytkay's avatar

Regardless of whatever else you might do, start your day with pushups. Great for the biceps and pecs.

First thing out of bed, drop and do as many pushups as possible, real fast. 5, 10, 20, 50 – whatever. Do your best.

And here’s the key – 10 minutes later, do it again! The second set is no harder, probably even easier.

You will quickly see your push-up max double and even triple.

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