Dear J: How can I prioritize exercising if I don’t have time and feel lazy sometimes?
Finding time to work out with school work, clubs and whatever else you have going on is a struggle for so many students. I think the start is the hardest, but getting past that is super important because exercising will make you feel so much more productive and less lazy. It can definitely help motivate you to be better in other parts of your life.
First, it’s important to find out what type of exercise works for you. Exercise should be enjoyable, so forcing yourself to lift weights if that feels like work to you or choosing to run even if you are horrified by the idea will make your exercise routine unsustainable. Whether it’s cardio, lifting weights or some kind of sport, pick something you enjoy, try new things and don’t be afraid to incorporate different kinds of exercise into your schedule.
Next, if you are just starting out or you have been struggling to be consistent with exercising for a long time, it’s going to be a lot better if you ease yourself into it. It’s easy to fall into the trap of being very motivated and going hard on your first session back so you can see results as soon as possible. This doesn’t work because you will feel too sore to work out for days, and it will kill your motivation. Results come slowly, so take it easy on your body and slowly build yourself up.
Lastly, figure out what time works for you. If you’re not a morning person, forcing yourself to go in the morning will not be sustainable past a few weeks. Everyone is different, and it doesn’t really matter what time you exercise if it’s within reasonable daytime hours.
Dear J: How do I put on weight in the gym?
Although our bodies are all different and putting on weight is easier for some than others, it is possible for everyone if they put in the right amount of work. For many people, doing cardio is not as important when trying to bulk up, so try to do that type of exercise as little as possible. Cardio can sometimes help you to stay lean while bulking, but lifting weights is the key, and you should lift heavy. This is a great time to try to push yourself and build your lifts! Doing fewer reps and heavier weights is what you should strive for — so if you can do 10 reps with ease on something, you’re doing too little!
A lot of the journey to bulking is also done in the dining halls. Eating a lot of protein will obviously help. Eggs are a great source of protein, and if you feel like you struggle to eat a lot, the Commons Marketplace has protein shakes that are really not that bad. You can also buy bags of protein powder to keep in your dorm if that’s easier. Stick to a plan and diet, and you’ll see results. Hope this helps!