More people are hitting the gym, the exercise trail or working out to fitness videos. In a recent survey, Gallup-Healthways found that in 2012, 54.7 percent of Americans work out three or more times per week, which is a number that has steadily increased for the last four years.
St. Thomas is on point with this trend.
No matter what time you stroll into the Anderson Athletic and Recreation Complex, you will see at least a handful of sweaty students armed with iPods and water bottles. But, I’ve always wondered, how active are we really as a campus?
The 180,000-square-foot AARC, complete with an aquatic center, field house, sports arena and weight and cardio rooms, provides us with the equipment to do just about any fitness activity we desire. And since 93.2 percent of the AARC’s users are undergraduate students, we certainly take advantage of it.
Scott Nelson, graduate assistant to Michelle Morgan, marketing manager of the Anderson facilities, confirmed that the AARC has seen a steady increase in usage since opening its doors in 2010. In spring 2011 (January to May), there were 124,442 users and there were 136,397 the same time in 2012.
The numbers don’t lie. Tommies are working it out.
That being said, students may wonder, if the AARC is getting busier, what’s the best time to head to the gym for a workout? Peak times have historically been from 3-6 p.m., with noon to 3 p.m. as a close second. This is probably due to students trying to squeeze their workout in during convocation hour or right after class before heading home for the night.
Also, in the beginning of the week students seem to be more motivated. Monday through Wednesday tally up the most users with a dramatic drop from Thursday through the weekend.
If you are bored of the treadmills and free weights or intimidated by fancy elliptical, take a fitness class, which have been gaining popularity too.
This semester, there are 195 students registered for the classes, and there’s a session for everyone: Yoga intro and intermediate classes, Yoga Sculpt, Spinning, TRX, Zumba, Jazzercise and Boot Camp. Teachers have experience and a few you may even recognize from accredited studios such as CorePower Yoga.
So, what’s your excuse not to sweat? That’s right, you don’t have one. Stay active, Tommies, and let’s do our part to keep that percentage of active Americans on the rise.
Nicole Soyka can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.