As far as some people believe, when students are not studying they are reclining back watching Netflix with a large sharing bag of crisps, which they definitely aren't sharing.
You are most probably right, in some cases. However after being adamant for the past two years that I will stay fit throughout university, I can now say that I have found a way to fight the lazy student stereotype.
Gym memberships have always been a definite no for me, as my student budget does not stretch far enough. Although a friend recently discovered a scheme run by my university called 'Let's Play', which allows students to take part in various classes at the local sports centre for just £1 each. Just when I thought it couldn't get any better, we found that the gym was free to use on Wednesdays.
It was exactly the boost we had both needed and it kick-started our healthy living strategy into action. Our first week was an experiment, however we went in to our second week at full pelt with a badminton class and two-hour gym session. I would like to share with you how my third week on the 'Let's Play' scheme panned out.
Monday - Squash- 6:30pm-7:00pm
I thought I'd try something new to bring some variation to the week, and so I eagerly booked a squash court for my partner and I to use for a half-hour session. I had no idea what I was letting myself in for, but I soon found out. Not only was I dodging the rubbery black ball continuously, my right arm just could not take the force of my clumsy swings. It did not take us long to realise that we were both doing a pretty useless job, but this made it all the more fun. If we weren't mocking each other over our pathetic aim, we were laughing at how we had actually managed not to take the other's eye out. My muscles probably benefitted more from all the giggling, rather than from the game itself - but it certainly was a fun sport to experience.
Tuesday - Badminton - 5:00pm-6:15pm
It was just my partner and I today, and it was very quiet. It took us a while to get into the swing of things (no pun intended), but we were soon practising hard with proper games. I lost every one, even after my partner was pretending to lose stamina so that I could sneak a few shots in, but it was great fun. Not only did I improve my serve, I also had the agility to move across the court faster - something I have also been working on. For only £1 each we had a strong hour and a half on the court, and as well as getting to grips with playing proper matches, we both had many laughs which made the experience all the better. I am looking forward to next week's session already!
Wednesday - Gym - 2:00pm- 3:10pm
What excites me most about going to the gym every Wednesday is that it is free! So I was not really phased that this would be the first session I had been to on my own. After a good 15 minutes on both the bike and cross-trainer, I took some time to focus on abs, legs and arms. The gym is equipped with everything I could need and more, and I'm never hovering around a machine waiting to use it - there is plenty for everyone to do. I did an hour and 10 minutes in total, a little less than previously, but it felt good all the same.
Overall I have thoroughly enjoyed proving to myself that I'm not a lazy student, and the fact that my weekly activity only cost me £2 is the cherry on top. Who says you can't stay fit on a budget?