Starting college opens you up to a whole new host of experiences. College can change your life in many ways, from fostering independence to creating opportunities for new connections. But starting college also means settling into a new routine and finding a balance between studying, socializing, and taking care of yourself.

Many students struggle to manage all their responsibilities, and your health can be one of the first things to slip down your list of priorities. However, it’s important to maintain a good fitness routine–even during busy or stressful times. It can help you find structure, keep you healthy, and even boost your energy levels.

Developing an effective exercise plan is key to maintaining good fitness. Jumpstart your health journey by taking a look at the following tips for developing your college exercise routine.

Identify Your Goals

Setting goals is an important step in creating your college exercise routine. Goals give you something to work toward and help you create a suitable plan.  


If your main focus is to build strength and gain muscle, then a weight-based exercise plan can help you achieve your goals. You can also build in some cardio to help you stay fit, as well as some stretching and mobility exercises to help you improve your flexibility and prevent injury.


Sometimes, you may not need a specific goal to motivate you to exercise. Maintaining your current weight or fitness level is also valuable and will ensure you continue to enjoy the other benefits of exercise. Your plan can include a combination of strength and cardio exercises to help you maintain a strong, fit body.

Whatever your workout goals may be, it’s important to tailor your routine to one that will help you meet them. Over time, you can adjust your goals to help ensure your exercise plan continues to work for you.

Get into a Routine

After you identify your goals, you can start deciding what you’d like your routine to look like. Below are some tips for helping you build a regular exercise plan:

Make time in your schedule for exercise

The best way to build and stick to your exercise routine is to schedule it. Make time for it in your week by planning when the best times to exercise are. This could be in the morning, during a break between classes, or in the evening after you’ve finished classes for the day. Keep in mind that you don’t have to work out during the same block of time every day. 

You should aim to exercise for at least 30 minutes, four or five times a week. 

Review your schedule regularly. If things come up that begin to take over your exercise time, consider rescheduling your sessions elsewhere so you can still fit it in.

Join a gym

Joining a gym is a simple way to help you keep fit. All the equipment you need is there, which is ideal for both weight loss and strength-based exercise plans. Some gyms also have classes, which are a fantastic way to keep fit if you prefer to exercise in a group setting. Choose a gym membership that’s affordable and fits into your budget, and remember to use it so that you get your money’s worth!

If joining a gym isn’t an option, there are still some budget-friendly ways you can work out. Consider taking up running or implementing some of these at-home workouts for strength training. Even without expensive equipment, there are many different ways you can stick to your exercise plan to help you reach your goals. You just have to get creative!

Work out with a friend to help you stay on track

If you struggle to stay motivated by yourself, why not enlist a friend to exercise with you? Exercising with someone else can help you stay on track because it holds you accountable. It can be a great way to build or maintain friendships because you are consistently spending time with one another.

Regular exercise is good for your health, but it can also help you develop discipline and a strong work ethic–qualities that are beneficial in other areas of college life. Exercise can also boost your focus and concentration, which is ideal for studying and taking exams.

Measure your progress

Measuring your progress can help you stay on track, ensuring you’re working toward your goals and adjusting them as needed.

How to track strength/fitness 

Tracking strength gains requires different methods. To track your strength/fitness:

  1. Measure how many reps you can perform in a certain period, paying attention to how this improves over time.
  2. Track your time and/or distance while running or performing different cardio exercises. 
  3. Measure how heavy you can lift and note any increases in volume over time.

Having an effective exercise routine in college can help you stay fit, manage your weight, and improve your mental well-being, which can help you make the most of college life. 


If you’re looking for a community of college students to exercise with in Rexburg, look no further than American Avenue. Check out our accommodation options and discover affordable living for students.