Volume 93, Issue 37

Thursday, November 4, 1999


Kitching a lifer for her sport

Getting physical and pumped up

Rowing to the nationals

Squashing the competition

Griffey Jr. leads hard existence

Getting physical and pumped up

©Greg Marshall/Gazette
NOW LET'S TRY ONE WITH WEIGHTS. Students at Campus Recreation show how to remain in shape while getting through exam stress.

By Sean Maraj
Gazette Staff

Let's get physical.

Olivia Newton John sang it about 20 years ago and since those fateful words, there's been a fitness revolution. Watching Olivia running around in tight spandex is one thing, but getting involved and staying in shape is something different altogether.

People start fitness programs for many reasons, from fighting obesity to dealing with life threatening disorders, said Cheryl Guindon, supervisor of Adult Group fitness at the central branch of London's YMCA.

"[For] most people it's for weight loss. Next would be half and half between people who have been sent here for medical conditions and people with some kind of genetic disorder that will affect them when they get older like diabetes," she said.

Guindon added that most people starting programs are generally physically unfit. "Overall fitness is definitely poor. Everyone coming in is medically healthy, but not necessarily physically fit," she said.

Laura Campbell, a fitness instructor with Western's Campus Recreation, agreed that weight loss is a major reason why people start a fitness program. She also stressed the other benefits of working out.

"Staying in shape, losing weight and relieving exam stress," she explained, are the major reason why students at Western visit the gym. "But generally it's to make themselves feel good and because it's fun."

Lindsay Page, a first-year physiotherapy student, who has been physically active for 10 years, said there were other benefits to staying in shape. "It makes me feel better and gives me energy," she said.

Starting a program that is effective isn't always easy. A program should consist of exercising approximately three days a week, 20 minutes on cardio and six exercises focusing on muscle, as well as stretching and flexibility exercises, Guindon said.

Once a program is started, Guindon added, there are two keys to ensure they are followed. "Consistency and keeping a program regularly. The main goal is to reduce stress and improve wellness."

As for the reason many people are unfit today, Guindon pointed to the pace of the world. "In a society where you want to see things yesterday, these results aren't instant," she said.

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Copyright © The Gazette 1999