April 8th, 2010 Jamie
I have a love/hate relationship with exercise–I hate it while its happening, but I love how great I feel when I’m done. And I love that it has more than just physical benefits (did you know exercise can even help stave off depression?), but I hate trying to find time to do it. If you feel that way, too, you’ll love these ideas to help you sneak exercise into your study time.
Sound weird? Think of it this way–if you combine two chores like studying and exercise, you could end up with more free time for fun stuff later.
Book It (…or Notebook It)
Heading to the gym for some semi-stationary exercise? Take your books along. Equipment like the stationary bike, elliptical, and treadmill usually have space to prop up a book. You can also bring a notebook with your class notes if you don’t want to attempt fine print while you’re jogging. Bonus–focusing on your studies will help you forget how seriously painful an hour on the treadmill can be!
Have a lit class to read for, but find yourself falling asleep a few chapters in? Try downloading the audiobook version and taking your iPod along for your workout (or hey, even on the walk to class).
Tons of classic public domain books are available (for free! And it’s legal!) at Librivox.org–but be warned, they’re all read by volunteers, so not every reading is stage-worthy. You can also check out your local library for CD versions (not legal to rip those, though, just FYI) or if you’re willing to lay down some cash, check out the huge selection on iTunes.
It’s hard to flip through flashcards while you’re lifting weights, so why not bring a study buddy to the gym? Grab a friend and quiz each other (or even just casually discuss–that will help info stick, too!) as you spot each other or run laps on the track.
One of the things I noticed–especially when I was just learning to study the collegiate way my freshman year–was that sitting in the library with a book was not the only way to study.
One of my favorite techniques was to put post-its by my doorframe and on my desk with mini-notes about whatever I was struggling with that week. I’d see them so many times a day, that eventually the information would sink in.
Obviously the post-it idea won’t work for a work-out situation, but you should try to come up with your own outside-the-box solutions. For example, if you’re struggling with reading notes and jogging at the same time, take along a podcast of your professor’s lectures instead (or even snag another related podcast–there are all kinds of educational downloads available online).
(Want more tips about getting fit and staying healthy at school? Try out these dorm room workouts, and learn about eating well, calming down, & exercising in a small space.)
Entry Filed under: health