EMU begins campus fitness competition

‘Tis the season for lifestyle changes. Many people on campus have made New Year’s resolutions to live a more healthy life in 2013 and for them, Eastern Michigan University’s Get Fit Challenge could not have come at a better time.

Beginning Jan. 21, teams of students, faculty and staff will motivate each other throughout the semester to attend nutrition and fitness seminars, hit the gym and get healthy—and win some prizes, too.

“Our goal is to get everyone on campus to be as fit as possible,” said Jeff Phillips, graduate assistant at EMU’s Rec/IM and coordinator of the challenge. “We want to unify different departments to get everyone involved.”

The Rec/IM has joined forces with the Office of Nutrition Services, the Wellness Center, the School of Health Promotion and Human Performance and B Young – B Fit to create a multi-faceted, hands-on health program. The Get Fit Challenge, which runs Jan. 21 to April 18, combines various campus resources to provide students with seminars and workshops in three different areas: fitness, nutrition and overall wellness.

The seminars and workshops will be led by fitness and nutrition trainers and professionals, including EMU professors.

“Everything you learn will be taught by someone in the field, credentialed and professional,” Phillips said. “You are getting real training by people who are here for EMU, who aren’t trying to just sell you their product.” Phillips said.

Topics discussed during the seminars will build on each other. Throughout the course of the nutrition seminars, you will learn not only what foods are good for you, but also how they work within your body, when to eat them and how to do it practically—expelling the myth that a healthy diet has to cost time and money that college students do not always have.

At the fitness seminars, you will learn about muscle groups and how to properly exercise them. Different workout methods and types of training will be discussed as well, and how to use them to achieve your fitness goals.

“At the end of this, you’ll know a lot more about how to plan your diet and exercise,” Phillips said. “And you’ll know where you can go on campus and who to go to if you’re not sure about something.”
Points will be dished out for attending hour-long seminars (there will be 10 total, one each week) and for working out.

“You can get bonus points for working out at the Rec/IM,” Phillips said.

Other activities will also earn teams bonus points including attending group workout classes at the Rec/IM or visiting the Office of Nutrition Services and creating a nutrition plan. At the end of the challenge, the teams with the most points will win prizes.

Teams will consist of four to eight people.

“Your teammates will help you stay motivated. If you’re slacking and they want to win, they’re going to make sure you keep going so the team gets more points,” Phillips said. “You don’t have to feel intimidated about going to the gym and working out because you’ll have your friends with you, supporting you.”

The cost to enter the challenge is $80 per team and includes all of the seminars and workshops. If you cannot gather anyone for a team but still want to participate, you can register individually as a free agent and be placed on a team. Individual registration costs $20.

Various Rec/IM and wellness services on campus will be discounted to those participating in the challenge. In addition to being a friendly competition, the Get Fit Challenge also counts as Learning Beyond the Classroom credit for students.

The registration deadline for the Get Fit Challenge is Jan. 18. To register, visit emich.athleague.com (the website Rec/IM uses for intramural sports) and select the Get Fit Challenge. There, you can register with your emich.edu email address and create or join a team.

“I’ve gone over it a million times and I can’t find anyone who would not benefit from this,” Phillips said. “It’ll be fun, you’ll learn a lot and you’ll get fit.”

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