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Staying Fit at University Now, eating is easier if you're in catered accommodation, but for self catered I've been in the quite entertaining position of having to remember the food groups for the first time since year 7 science lessons and realising that I'd managed to pretty much miss out on protein for a week and a half. Meal planning and consideration of things like 'vitamins' will hopefully keep that in check. Sleeping well is another one that can be tricky, but getting into a semi regular cycle that ensures you get at least 7 9 hours is essential for keeping up your energy for the whole term and making sure you don't crash in that final week of deadlines. With those tackled, it's just that little exercise one on the end. To the uninitiated, Exeter might seem like a slightly exercise obsessed environment. In many ways, it's hard to get away from everywhere you look there are guys in rowing/badminton/korfball stash and girls in fluorescent leggings and trainers. Half the student population here seem to live in sport kit, and while that can be intimidating, I've been reliably informed that a lot of people exploit the trend for comfort purposes and have yet to actually set foot in the Sports Hall. If we're being honest though, there are plenty of ways you can keep up the exercise. Hiking up Cardiac/Forum hill on a daily basis is a pretty good starting point, but if you're like me and have no desire to commit your precious free time to competitive team sports and the thought of a gym environment breaks you out in a cold sweat; consider something else. The idea of 'going running' on a regular basis was terrifying when I first considered it, particularly as I had no idea where to start. At this point, I'm going to massively plug the NHS Couch to 5km podcast, which takes you from absolute couch potato to running for 30 minutes solidly over a 9 week plan. It's an easy build programme which anyone can do, so with the 'I don't run' excuse out of the way, here are 6 reasons why running is the way to go: This is pretty self explanatory, but not to be underrated. With the whole overhaul of starting a new life at university, why not add in a couple of New Year esque resolutions too? It might seem obvious, but they don't talk about the Freshers' 15 for nothing. It's pretty easy to gain weight at university what with the microwave meals, greater alcohol intake and the temptation of Dominos on a tri weekly basis. It might go against the grain of stereotypical 'student living', but building regular exercise into the university routine around lectures and socials is a good way to if not combat, at least minimise the effects of an erratic diet. Unfortunately, the university gym is no exception, and if you're covering accommodation and food bills with your loan, shelling out on a membership you may/may not use seems a little excessive. In praise of the lowly run, the only investment you really need to make is in a decent pair of trainers. 4. See more of where you're living Finding a route to run can be a challenge, but an interesting one. The first time I tried to follow my 5km route I ended up getting hideously lost, running about 8km round in circles, and having to ask, red faced and sweaty, a bemused passer by which direction the Cathedral was. Some months later though, and I'm now aware of a whole host of back routes and side alley short cuts around the city centre which minimise my exposure to the public but can take me on some decent length routes. Running around town has also meant I know a lot more about Exeter than I would've otherwise international food shop? Just along Old Tiverton Road. Need to get to the Quay? Here, take this scenic short cut. There are m&m direct nike shoes plenty of ways to de stress that don't involve panting up hills, and while I advocate all nike shoes outfit and any ways people can find a little peace, exercise is a pretty good one. While when you first start running it might seem the exact opposite of calming and therapeutic, once you've built up your fitness I promise it is a genuinely enjoyable process. The endorphins from that bizarre 'post run peace' can last a whole evening, and the sense of accomplishment in making a new personal best can be hugely satisfying. Literally run away from your responsibilities/deadlines, with the perfectly valid reasoning that you're doing it for your health. A final note on embarrassment: Being a beginner is enough to put a lot of people off ever contemplating running, and I was personally no exception to this. I'm not exactly the epitome of the slim/toned runner of the Nike adverts, and in my ill fitting leggings and bright exercise induced tomato face I felt very self conscious at first. 'Running down an empty residential street at 10pm just to avoid other people' self conscious. However, in hindsight I've realised that the nike shoes 1994 only thing people should be thinking when they see someone out running is 'wow, look at that motivated person doing exercise' and anything else is, quite frankly, their problem, not yours.