Lifestyles: Working out while staying in

Many students want to get in shape. However, daily obligations, such as work or class, keep them from going to the gym.

However, fitness experts suggest that nothing should stand in the way of bettering ones health.

According to University of Central Florida Fitness Instructor Crystal Allen, the average person can work out regularly, even with time constraints.

An efficient workout does not depend solely on time and length, Allen said. Someone with a busy schedule can get an effective exercise routine done in as little as 20 minutes.

A home workout is not only an alternative. For some, it is a preference.

The best alternative is always at home, said Rey Brown, a local YMCA head personal trainer. The best thing that seems to be for most Americans is cardio, so walking and running is always the best option.

When striving to live a healthier lifestyle, fitness goes far beyond sit-ups, squats and jumping jacks. Allen said a balanced diet is one of the most important factors outside of exercising.

It is important to understand that you can never out-train a bad diet, she said. Eating foods with poor nutritional value strips one of their ability to perform their workout routines at their potential.

Allen, who is also a national-level physique competitor and model, said minor adjustments can be made to enhance a diet, even on a tight schedule.

Some simple adjustments include reducing ones sugar, sodium and saturated fat intake, she said. Ensure to eat vegetables and complex carbohydrates, like sweet potatoes and oats, daily. Also, opt for leaner sources of protein such as chicken and fish.

Even with various dietary changes and the use of fitness alternatives, Allen said it is up to the individual to evaluate priorities and be disciplined.

One can find time for what they feel is a priority, she said. Those times that you find yourself sitting around watching television, do some pushups or jumping jacks or go to the gym if you have one local. The desired results can only be achieved if the effort is put forth.