The gym. Images of ridiculously fit peers fill your head and the smell of stale sweat threatens to enter your nostrils. You look down at your old tshirt and leggings combo as people prance by in designer exercise gear and neon sneakers. “Is it even worth it?” you ask, as you see the people running tirelessly on treadmills and lifting what appears to be your body weight without breaking a sweat. Maybe tomorrow…

Look, I get it. The gym is by no means anyone’s favorite place, and the act of dragging yourself there is half the battle. But, as I mentioned in my last post, I do have to force myself to go on days that I take off from riding, and I have developed some form of a system for motivating myself to work out on campus. In the morning. When I could be sleeping. And since we all know how precious sleep is to a college student, if I can do it, then you probably can too.

First thing’s first: check that schedule. Do you have an hour-long break at some point in your day? Maybe you want to start waking up earlier, and the gym can help motivate you to do that. I physically write down when I want to go to the gym in my planner and calendar that way I have a constant reminder that I have to go and work out. Not to mention if I end up skipping the gym I feel bad because then I can’t cross it off my checklist of things to do that day, which is upsetting to say the least. I keep my workouts to about an hour each time I go, that way I can treat it more as a study break and a way for me to get out of my house or the library. Why do I work out in the morning? Honestly, it’s because the gym is less crowded around 9am, plus I have an early class MWF, which gives me the opportunity to get my workout done right when it lets out so I can go home and shower before continuing my day.

Now for my favorite part: finding cute gym clothes! I’m a firm believer that if you have workout gear that makes you feel confident and look great that you’ll be more tempted to go the gym and show it off. Personally, I love Under Armor running pants paired with a tank top or a vintage band t-shirt, and my custom Nikes that I got about 6 years ago in NYC. And don’t forget that your workout clothes do not have to be expensive! I love finding new pants and shorts at Target, which are both functional and super affordable.

And finally: creating a workout that works for you. Yesterday was arm day for me, which is probably the weakest part of my body. Because of the muscles I engage when I’m riding I have been trying to focus on strengthening my biceps, shoulders, and back as much as I can, which leads me to the graphic you see on your left. This is the workout I did at the gym, just to get my heartrate up and my muscles burning. My goal is to keep increasing the weight and the reps I do until I am at a level that I can maintain, but until then I will be doing my best to continue pushing myself to become stronger each day. It begs to be mentioned that I am in no way a certified trainer, this graphic is just to give all of you an idea of what I do at the gym personally, it is not a workout plan to be followed to a T! Do what challenges you and makes you feel great in your own body, because that is what matters and that is what should motivate you to go to the gym, not some silly graphic laying out how I personally train. You do you 🙂

I have to run off to class, but I’ll post again soon!