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The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.
This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Illinois chapter.

When I first began going to the gym with the goal of staying active, I had no clue what to do. The weights and machines all seemed intimidating, which left me with two places to go: the stairmaster and the treadmill. Day in and day out I would solely do cardio, which especially due to my asthma, was not fun. After a while, I didn’t want to go anymore and almost gave up my goal until I found out how to overcome my dilemma. Simply changing up what I do! This summer, I hope that you won’t continue down the path I did, and instead, take some inspiration from my following ideas on how to stay active this summer!

Running Shoes Water Bottle
Jocelyn Hsu / Spoon

Try a new activity

There are endless options of activities one may partake in to stay fit, so choose one that you actually like! At the gym, once you get over the fear, using the weights and machines are fun and rewarding. There are plenty of videos and guides of what exercises to do on each visit which helps with getting over the feeling that you aren’t doing the right thing. With this, there are also classes that teach beginners the proper ways to use the machines!

Other than going to the gym though, there are many more alternatives that similarly have instructed classes such as pilates, yoga and cycling. These each allow one to be active while working out in vastly different ways.

Try a new location

Sometimes the exercise itself isn’t the issue, but the location! When one gets bored of their current workout guide, it is so important to switch it up because if not, it won’t feel enjoyable to partake in the activity any longer. One idea of ways to switch it up is by going on a hike, maybe at Starved Rock or some other scenic place. Personally, connecting with the outdoors is a great way for me to distract myself from being so tired from what exercise I am doing. This can also make for a fun adventure of exploring nature!

Try bringing a friend

I know it is good to be dependent and sometimes it is fun to go work out alone, but occasionally it is so fun to bring a friend! I have found that whenever I bring a friend, it does tend to take longer because we end up talking the entire time; however, it is often more fun. It helps me to take my mind off of what I am doing, which also makes the time go by much quicker. Additionally, with a busy schedule, it allows me to spend time with friends and stay active during the same period of time!

Exercise can be fun! Sometimes, you just have to switch it up and try a new way of working out. Whether it be a new activity, location or with others, I am sure it’ll help your motivation and enjoyment rise again.

Hi! My name is Hazel Polanco and I am a freshman at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign. I am majoring in political science on the Pre-Law track and am minoring in legal studies and journalism! In my free time, I like to go to the gym, read, write, and experiment with different hobbies.