Fitting In Fitness
By Miranda Massie on August 7, 2018
Spending time outdoors is a great way to make the most of the sunny weather. It’s also a perfect opportunity to sneak in a little extra fitness. This month, give your fitness a boost and maximize your time outside.
Week 1: Get Strong Without a Gym
Discover nine sneaky ways to strength train outside of the gym (Greatist.com). No equipment required!
Week 2: Immerse in Nature
Have you heard of forest bathing? Soak in the benefits of this Japanese practice from simply being in nature and letting nature guide your walk. Learn the simple steps here. (Time Magazine)
Week 3: Give Your Legs a Low Impact Workout
Looking for something quick and easy? These seated leg exercises (Livestrong.com) can be done indoors or outdoors in less than five minutes.
Week 4: Take a Mindful Moment in a Beautiful location
Feeling good is about more than just our physical health; mental fitness is just as important. Make the most of a few quiet moments outside: pause, think and reflect. Need inspiration? Check out these hidden gems of UBC.
Photo Credit: UBC Communications & Marketing
By Miranda Massie on July 4, 2018
It’s often the best way to beat the heat in the summer, but pools can also be great places to fit in low impact exercise and activity. Swimming has been shown to have positive impacts on physical, psychological and social health. Take a look at this month’s tips for wading gently into water workouts.
Week 1: Find a Nearby Outdoor Pool or Water Park
Week 2: Take Your Workout to the Water
Water fitness is so much more than aquacise these days. UBC’s Aquatic Centre offers 10 different water fitness classes, including River Walking, Parent and Baby Aquafit and Aqua Yoga.
Alternatively, check out this instructional video which provides a how-to guide for water aerobics.
Week 3: Stay on Top of It (the water that is)
If being in the water is not your thing, there are plenty of ways to stay active on the water. Kayaking, canoeing, paddle boarding and sailing are all great ways to stay fit and learn new skills. Check out Tourism Vancouver’s full list of potential watersports.
Week 4: Go to the Beach for the View
Not interested in swimming laps? You can still reap cardio and strength benefits from going to the beach by taking the stairs and enjoying the beautiful view. Check out these two 30-minute walking maps of UBC’s renowned beach trails: Tower Beach Trail and Wreck Beach Trail.
Have fun exploring what the water has to offer your overall health this summer. Want more fitness tips and inspiration? Visit our Fitting in Fitness page.
Photo: UBC Communications & Marketing
By Miranda Massie on June 5, 2018
The sun is out, the air has warmed, and it’s the perfect time to incorporate a little play into our lives. Being a grown-up and a professional doesn’t mean that we can’t infuse our days with some fun. Here are a few ways to bring recess back into your life.
Week 1: Join Yoga on the Mall
Take a break from your work day and participate in Yoga on the Mall, a fun and free group yoga class. Can’t make the mall? Look for other classes near your workplace, home or neighbourhood that take place outside.
Week 2: Up Your Lawn Game IQ
Fitting in fitness doesn’t need to be overly strenuous. Lawn games are a great way to keep active while socializing with people of all ages. Check out this Family Education list of the top 10 backyard party games for all ages and consider adding one or two to your next BBQ or group event.
Week 3: Playgrounds Aren’t Just for Kids
Playgrounds are fun places to spend time no matter what age you are. They also offer an opportunity to spice up an otherwise boring workout. Discover how to use swings and jungle gyms to your advantage with this Full Body Playground Workout from Parents.com.
No playground around, or perhaps it’s full of kids? Try these 17 Picnic Bench Exercises from RedefiningStrength.com.
Week 4: Get Some Extra Credit
Did you know you’re already benefitting from many of the chores or activities you already participate in? Cleaning, gardening, walking the dog and even shopping are some of the ways you are already fitting in fitness, so keep up the great work!
Calories burned during leisure and routine activities (Harvard Health)
Photo Credit: UBC Communications and Marketing
By Miranda Massie on May 3, 2018
Week 1: Premium partner workouts
Try FitnessBlender’s Total Body Partner Workout, which comes with information on calories burned and a printable workout sheet.
Week 2: Tandem relaxation
Stretch, tone and relax with this set of partnered yoga stretches.
Week 3: Have a party in the park
Grab a partner and go play outside with this full-body playground workout from the Greatist.com.
Week 4: Working out with a baby bump?
Follow along with this 30-minute low-impact, pre-natal cardio workout video:
By Miranda Massie on April 3, 2018
Spring has sprung, and with it comes a renewed desire to spend more time outside. Take advantage of the fresh air and budding trees by using them as motivation to move more during your breaks on campus. These handy, printable walking maps offer a variety of 30-minute walks around campus. They even include information about distances, steps, terrain and level of difficulty. Bonus: They’re free!
Week 1: Main Mall Trail (Central)
Week 2: Thunderbird Trail (South)
Week 3: Tower Beach Trail (North)
Week 4: Wreck Beach Trail (East)
Bonus: Sword Fern Trail (West)
Photo Credit: UBC Communications and Marketing
By Miranda Massie on March 7, 2018
Posture is an important part of our overall fitness and comfort. Learn how to protect your body by incorporating posture exercises and stretching into your daily routine.
Week 1: Try a Midday Desk Workout
Check out the 10 Easy Stretches You Can Do at Your Desk in this Chatelaine.com video.
Week 2: Stretch It Out!
Print these handy ready-to-use stretch guides and post near your work station or around the office.
Week 3: Ergo your Lab or Office
Proper ergonomic design can minimize the risk of a wide range of injuries – from eye strain and carpal tunnel syndrome to persistent neck or back pain. Follow these easy step-by-step guides (office or lab) to set yourself up for comfort and success.
Week 4: Cultivate Your Core
Don’t forget your core. This six-minute workout from Fitnessblender.com requires no equipment and will help you build strength and achieve perfect posture.
Photo credit: UBC Communications & Marketing
By Miranda Massie on February 5, 2018
February seems like the perfect time to focus on fitness that is good for the heart. Protect your heart by exploring ways to keep yourself motivated and moving.
Week 1: Take Part in Move UBC Month
Move UBC encourages us incorporate more movement into our daily lives. By sitting less and moving more – and getting your colleagues to move along with you – we can improve our mental, physical and social health and reduce the risk of many preventable diseases. Get inspired to move by checking out the Move UBC events calendar.
Week 2: Jump Around
Bring back the nostalgia of childhood and get your heart pumping with just 15 minutes of this fun and easy cardio alternative. Or, follow along with this 6 minute video.
Week 3: Book a Heart Health Assessment
UBC’s annual Travelling Health Fair may be booked up, but faculty and staff can still get a heart health check-up in these two ways:
- February 26 – March 9, contact the UBC Pharmacists Clinic at 604-827-2584 to request a free heart health assessment, the same screening offered through the Travelling Health Fair this year.
- Visit our online Virtual Health Fair, where you’ll find over 20 different screenings, tools and resources to help you assess your current status and make improvements towards a healthier self.
Week 4: Get Your Cardio on Demand
Looking for inspiration to get moving? Look no further than the following list of YouTube channels that offer fitness videos on demand.
Photo credit: UBC Communications and Marketing
By Miranda Massie on January 11, 2018
Bring those fitness-based New Year’s resolutions back to life with these great tips and tricks for staying on track and building strong and lasting habits.
Week 1 and 2:
We often look to the end results when determining the progress and achievements of our fitness goals. By focusing on goal setting and measurement at the start, we can set ourselves up for long-term success.
Sometimes it can be difficult to stay motivated if we are not enjoying our activities. The best way to resuscitate your fitness plan is to make it fun! If you don’t enjoy running, don’t make this a resolution. Try UBC Recreation’s Free Week to discover what gets you excited and raring to work out.
Week 3: Go high tech
With the number of apps, YouTube videos and open-sourced fitness classes available, there are countless low and no-cost ways to stay active. Try one of Fitness Blender’s new workouts, like this “Pain in the Abs” core workout:
Or download a fresh new app like Aaptiv that offers personalized and narrated training programs that you can do indoor or outdoor, including walking, running, elliptical, biking, yoga and more. Please note that Aaptiv requires in-app purchases. For free workout options, try the Nike Training App or Sworkit.
Week 4: Stay motivated
The Greatist.com offers tips on the best ways to stick to your fitness resolutions. They are more fun and interesting than you think!
By Miranda Massie on October 25, 2017
Fitting in time for our physical fitness is important, but sometimes we can forget one of the biggest and most important muscles in our body: the mind. This month, in honour of UBC Thrive, we offer tips and suggestions for keeping your brain fit, as well as your body.
Week 1: Listen away your stress
Sound therapists and researchers have created a custom eight-minute piece of music specifically designed to reduce stress and anxiety by lowering heart rate, blood pressure and the stress hormone known as cortisol. Listen here:
Visit one of the many thriving spaces and places on UBC’s Vancouver campus. Examples include Fairview Square, Wreck Beach and the Museum of Anthropology. You can also check out these additional hidden gems you may not have heard about.
Week 3: Increase neural pathways
Activities that engage both hemispheres of the brain help promote new and existing neural pathways. Follow along and try this Ear and Nose Brain Break or watch it below:
Week 4: Digital detox
Whether it’s for five minutes at the dinner table or a whole day, taking time away from electronic devices is key to keeping our brains happy. Try the Greatist.com’s 7-Day Digital Detox for Real People or discover their free tools to save your eyes from digital eye strain.
Interested in learning more? Read Scientific American’s “Why Your Brain Needs More Downtime
Photo credit: Tirthankar Gupta (Flickr)
Posted in Fitting In Fitness, Mental Health | Tagged arts, brain break, brain training, digital detox, fitting in fitness, mental fitness, music, neuroscience, pathways, spaces, technology | Leave a response
By Miranda Massie on October 3, 2017
Just because it’s fall, doesn’t mean you have to put the bike in the garage. Bike to Work Week is back from October 23-29 and we have a month’s worth of tips for helping you keep up your cardio.
Week 1: Wet weather tips
Check out this handy video of the Top 10 Tips for Cycling in the Rain
Week 2: Ride inside
For the fair-weather riders out there, try taking an indoor spin class as an alternative to riding outside. Many community centres offer classes, or visit one of the many spin and cycle studios around town.
Week 3: Sign up for BTWW
Get more out of your commute while enjoying fresh air, improved health and a lower carbon footprint. Jump on a bike and invite a friend or colleague to join you for Bike to Work Week at UBC. Enter for a chance to win a cycling tour of Italy or a new bike!
Week 4: Track your progress
Staying motivated can be challenging, but these apps can help keep you focused on your goals as you track your distance, routes, calorie-burning success and more! You might just be your best competition.
Photo credit: UBC communications and Marketing
By Miranda Massie on September 13, 2017
Week 1: Don’t miss Free Week!
UBC Recreation (September 11-17) and BodyWorks Fitness Centre (September 11-16) invite you explore as many classes as you like at various Vancouver campus locations. It’s a great opportunity to try different types of activities before registering for a full program. If you’re in the Okanagan, check out the Campus Rec Open House (September 14).
As UBC staff and faculty, you have access to a wide range of corporate health, fitness and family discounts that will help you fit in fitness without breaking the bank. Check back as the list is updated and expanded regularly.
Week 3: Drop-in for a twoonie!
Looking for a cost effective workout plan? Staff and faculty can drop-in to the BodyWorks Fitness Centre Monday to Friday from 1-4pm for only $2!
Week 4: Stay in shape while on the move.
Looking for ways to incorporate more walking into your day? Park on the top level of the parkade, get off the bus 1-2 stops early, or cycle to meetings across campus. Another free alternative is to take the stairs to your classroom or office.
People who use active transportation to commute to work and school (by bus, bike, or foot) tend to be more active in their day, and have more positive lifestyle attributes [Source].