By Megan Spencer |Staff Writer|
Forming an exercise routine can be stressful at times and students can become overwhelmed with finding a routine that keeps them motivated and entertained.
The Student Recreation and Fitness Center provides students with fun group exercise classes with instructors that keep students motivated.
Katie Challis is a full-time student as well as a personal trainer and class instructor for Zumba and Butts n’ Guts at the Rec Center.
I had the opportunity to observe her Zumba class to get some insight on her tips and tricks to staying motivated throughout the year.
But first, what is Zumba and Butts n’ Guts?
Zumba’s style of dance-fitness incorporates a fun, exciting and party-like form of exercise that incorporates Latin, Salsa, Hip Hop and Merengue.”It gives a different range of motion and allows the body to work different groups of muscles,” said Challis.
While Butt’s ‘n Guts is a strength training class using small hand weights, body weight, balance balls and mats.”It is a strengthening class that works the lower body such as glutes, quads, ham strings and abdominal,” said Challis.
“I really enjoy teaching students in group exercises because they are more energized and ready to learn new things.”
“I love helping people enjoy working out. I want people to be excited about exercising and to always want to make it a priority to come to class.”
How do you balance being a full time student, personal trainer and class instructor?
“It’s all about prioritizing and having a schedule. Since everything is at a set time it helps to keep me in line. I really enjoy being in a routine.”
What pushes her to be so active?
“I like to be fit because there are a lot of health problems in my family. It also gives me the endorphins I need to get through my day so I can encourage others to stay active. I always tell my students that exercising is just as important as studying.”
What is her advice for staying active?
“A big thing right now is resolutions. So many people get hung up on them. In the beginning of the year my class will start off full and then students will slowly dwindle. Instead of going all out, they need to start slow and build a routine and work your way up. That way they can maintain a healthy exercise and not get burnt out.”
From start to finish classes are upbeat with tons of energy.
Challis has a way of bringing in all her students and get them pumped for the hour ahead.
A way she does this is through the music. It incorporates a blend ranging from hip hop to salsa.
The studio has a floor to ceiling mirror on one wall that allows Challis to see her class as well as students to see their movements and engage their muscles.
As the class starts winding down she has them get into a large circle with her in the center. “I do that so everyone can see each other and I can watch the students to help them engage their core more.”
After everyone’s energy is through the roof and dripping in sweat, she does a cool down that incorporates a variety of stretches before the class comes to an end.
So if your stuck in a rut, having a hard time concentrating or you are just looking for some fun, join Challis in one of her classes and she will be sure to jump start your exercise routine.