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Avoiding the Quarantine 15 – How to Stay Fit from your Dorm Room

As we try to settle into this new semester, most of our minds are full of to-do’s: that project you have for your Communications class, signing up for your friend’s new club, oh…and…working out. Quarantine and the Coronavirus pandemic have impacted every aspect of our lives tremendously – and universities across the country are no exception. One of the many changes on college campuses this fall is that most gyms are closed or limited capacity. Exercising was already hard enough to fit into the busy schedule of a college student, and now it is even easier for it to fall to the bottom of our to-do list and never get crossed off. As if battling the Freshman 15 wasn’t enough, now college students – those who live in dorms and those who live at home – must find ways to stay healthy without club sports or the gym.

Below you’ll find a list of our favorite ways to stay fit with minimal space and equipment. But before you get too excited, remember that you are beautiful the way you are! This pandemic is unprecedented and has affected all of us in different ways – so don’t get down on yourself if you’ve been snacking constantly lately (I know I have). Exercise for the right reasons: to stay healthy, to clear your mind, and to have fun.



Peleton is all the rage right now in the fitness community – and for good reason! You probably first heard of Peleton on a commercial for their spinning bikes or treadmills, which are both state-of-the-art. However, if you’re like most college students, you’re trying to stay healthy on a budget. Peleton Digital is an app with hundreds of on-demand classes in areas like running, cardio, strength training, and yoga – with minimal or even no equipment needed. These classes are pre-recorded with background music and some of the most motivational instructors in the fitness world. Peleton Digital is offering a 30-day free trial, and after that a membership is just 12.99 a month. Split the monthly charge with a few friends and your wallet and your body will both be happy.


POPSUGAR is a media and technology company that is relevant to all aspects of life – they create content about beauty, clothing, and, of course, fitness. POPSUGAR Fitness is the company’s YouTube channel, which contains hundreds of workout videos. Kickboxing, dance, barre, and cardio workouts are just a few of the categories the channel posts most frequently. The channel also features workouts with celebrity trainers, Nike trainers, and even professional athletes. The best part is: all the workouts are free! Most of them are designed for you to do at home, with only a yoga mat and sometimes a few light weights. Next time you’re ready to exercise, go to POPSUGAR Fitness’ page and there’s no doubt you’ll find the perfect workout.


YouTube has millions of videos on almost every subject – but recently, many influencers and fitness models have begun creating channels centered solely around health. MadFit, Pamela Reif, and Chloe Ting are a few of the most popular channels, each with millions of subscribers. Some channels, such as the popular Blogilates, even create free workout programs for you to follow, doing a different combination of their videos each day. These channels also include videos on healthy eating and recipes, stretching, and body positivity. YouTube has the perfect workout for anyone – if you only have 15 minutes, if you need something low impact, or if you’re in the mood to work your abs to exhaustion, YouTube is the place for you. If you need to stretch, get some exercise, or just get motivated to create a healthier lifestyle for yourself, head over to some of the channels mentioned above. Over time, you’ll find your favorite videos and the channels that work best for you.

Partner Workouts

Hate working out by yourself? Any of the above workouts can be done with a roommate or friend – socially distanced of course! There are also tons of workouts designed specifically for groups and partners on YouTube and other fitness sites. This Healthline workout features over 20 exercises to strengthen your body with the company of a friend, significant other, or roommate. Just make sure you’re wearing a mask and using hand sanitizer and you’re good to go!

Explore Your City

Working out doesn’t have to feel like exercise! A long stroll through your campus or the neighborhood outside can strengthen your body – even if you don’t even notice! Here at Fordham, a long walk through the New York Botanical Garden is the perfect workout to do with friends. The beautiful scenery is a great distraction for the burn your legs will feel as you walk through the hills and valleys of the garden. Make sure you wear a mask and lace up your walking shoes!

Don’t stress about the Quarantine/Freshman 15. Exercise should be a fun distraction from days full of Zoom calls and online work, especially when gyms, cafeterias, and other places around campus are closed. Next time you’re bored or need to clear your head, pick out a workout and get moving!

Kaleigh Pfohl

Fordham '23

Kaleigh is an International Political Economy major at Fordham and loves writing, reading, and social activism!
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