Okay, so you want to be fitter. But you also need to spend time in the library writing that essay, catching up on the latest antics of Jon Snow and his undead foes, then see your friends and probably even go home to see mum one weekend (your washing is piling up after all). Life is busy and so adding a trip to the gym into this mix can seem like a big ask.

So, what steps can you make in order to ensure that exercise becomes an everyday part of your routine? It might be easier than you think:

1) Start Small

Throwing yourself in at the deep end when it comes to exercise may seem like a good idea, in theory. But in practice, it is a quick and sure way to kill your motivation. So starting off small can be the best way to keep your motivation from failing you on day one, in fact starting small can help you grow your motivation organically through the process.

Growing your effort helps to keep yourself going strong, preventing you from burning out.

2) Track Your Progress

The ability to see how well – or badly – you are doing can be a fantastic motivator for your gym efforts. If nothing else, you track where you need to make improvements and focus on the exercise that will help you reach your goals faster.

A Fitbit or other brand fitness tracker can be a great way to track not only your steps, as many use it for, but your actual progress. Especially your level of activity on any given day.

3) Stretch

Working out can feel so harrowing at first because your body is not used to it. Adding a comprehensive stretching session before and after your exercise routine can help this ache immensely, making your first foray into exercise much less painful than it has to be. 

A good stretch can be the difference between a pulled muscle and a nice feeling in your muscles post work out.

4) Partner Up

Nothing helps your motivation more than having a gym buddy to bolster your efforts. A friend to experience every day of the gym with, to celebrate your highs and commiserate your lows, can be an asset you didn’t even know you needed. But one that makes going to the gym just that little bit more fun.

The gym could also be a great place for you to make friends; so put on your friendliest smile when you walk in the door!

5) Start Over Each Day

Each new day brings with it a new opportunity, so the saying goes. A bad day at the gym yesterday should be forgotten, as the next day will bring itself a whole new host of opportunities. You didn’t manage to lift that weight yesterday? Well, today you will. And if not today then tomorrow.

Keep a positive frame of mind about the future of your exercise efforts and you will be fitter before you know it. Or at least tomorrow you will be.

6) Dress to Impress 

Sometimes, and I know I am speaking for more than just myself here, spending money on something makes us want to make the most of the experience. Especially as a student, where money can be a foreign concept. If you’re spending your money on clothes and a monthly gym membership, you want to be sure that

It can be a case of finding yourself the right gym joggers, or even a solid pair of trainers to make your exercise routine get off to a flying start. But, safe to say the more you invest in your exercise efforts the more you will want out of them.

Commit Yourself

The only true way to make exercise a part of your routine as a student is to make the commitment to do so. Giving yourself the push to get out of the house and pick up your gym bag day in and day out can be a lot of effort, but it can also be very worthwhile once you start to see the benefits of a more active lifestyle.

And there you have it! The best ways to make fitness part of your everyday routine as a student. Yes, the coursework piles up. Yes, sometimes being social means sacrificing some of the other important things in life. But that doesn’t mean you never have time to exercise at all!

Get out there and run/row/gym/karate chop your way to fitness. Just make sure you get out there!