How to start and maintain a fitness routine in college

Posted by Annalise van der Wel on 5/4/23 3:42 PM

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As you navigate through classes, assignments, and social activities, it's essential to prioritize your physical well-being. Regular exercise can improve your physical and mental health, reduce stress, and increase energy levels, setting you up for success in all aspects of college life. Read on for a practical guide on how to start a fitness routine in college and make it a sustainable part of your lifestyle.

1. Set clear goals

Setting clear and achievable goals is vital for your fitness journey. Using the SMART (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, Time-bound) criteria can help you set effective goals. For example, instead of saying, "I want to get fit," you can say, "I want to be able to run a mile without stopping within two months." Writing down your goals and tracking your progress will keep you motivated and accountable.

2. Figure out what you like

A well-rounded workout plan should include different types of exercises to target different muscle groups and improve overall fitness. Cardiovascular exercises like running, biking, or swimming improve heart health, while strength training exercises like weight lifting or bodyweight exercises increase muscle strength. Flexibility exercises like stretching or yoga improve flexibility, and group fitness classes offer variety and socialization. There are many good options for exercise, so find what you like and stick to it!

3. Create a workout plan 

No one achieves success overnight. Aim for consistency over fast results and you will achieve your goals. A big part of staying consistent is having a plan. Arrange your workouts based on your schedule and preferences. Consider having different days with different focuses or always going at a similar time. Building the habit of working out is key.

4. Utilize campus resources

Most college campuses offer fitness resources that you can take advantage of. Fitness centers, intramural sports, group fitness classes, and outdoor recreational areas are usually available. Seek guidance from fitness trainers, join exercise groups or clubs, and make use of free or discounted fitness programs. Working out with peers can provide motivation, support, and a sense of community.

5. Incorporate healthy habits

A healthy lifestyle goes hand-in-hand with a fitness routine. Proper nutrition, hydration, sleep, and stress management are crucial. Eat balanced meals, stay hydrated, get enough sleep, and manage stress through relaxation techniques or mindfulness exercises. Healthy habits complement your fitness routine and contribute to your overall well-being.

6. Overcome challenges

Starting a fitness routine in college may come with challenges, such as time constraints, lack of motivation, and balancing academic and social commitments. It's important to prioritize fitness as a non-negotiable part of your routine and set realistic expectations. Finding an accountability partner, staying flexible with your workout plan, and persevering despite challenges will help you stay on track.


By incorporating a fitness routine into your college lifestyle, you can enhance your physical and mental well-being and set yourself up for success. Assess your fitness level, set clear goals, create a workout plan, utilize campus resources, incorporate healthy habits, and overcome challenges. Remember to stay consistent, stay motivated, and enjoy the benefits of an active and healthy lifestyle throughout your college years and beyond.

Are you ready to start your fitness journey in college? Share your fitness goals or success stories with us in the comments below. If you need further information or advice, feel free to reach out to us. Let's prioritize our health and well-being and thrive in college together!



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