So here we are again, face to face with a new year ahead of us and resolutions we’re determined to stay on top of. Some people may look to spend more time with friends and family. Others might strive to increase their positivity. The majority, though, will be found at the gym.

Losing weight or staying fit and healthy is ranked as the most common New Year’s resolution across the Internet. But for a lot of people, the promise of losing weight is just as easily broken as it is made. When it comes to losing weight, the Statistic Brain Research Institute suggests that 75 per cent of those people maintained their resolution until the end of the first week.

Fortunately for Laurier Brantford students, the university is here to save them. The new winter 2016 fitness schedule is out to help students keep on top of their health and fitness that they promised their bodies at the beginning of 2016. And the best part? All fitness classes are free.

“I have seen the same people come to my lunchtime classes twice a week, every week, for months now, and believe it or not, their stamina has greatly improved,” said Kristina Simsic, the Cycle Fit instructor.

The fitness classes run throughout the day, five days a week, and there is something for everyone. Fitness classes are an entertaining and motivating way to get exercise.

“The atmosphere improves as soon as there are groups of people all working towards one goal,” said Simsic.

Simsic teaches classes every Tuesday and Thursday at the YMCA. Laurier Brantford offers a wide variety of spin classes that are good for Golden Hawks interested in throwing themselves at some challenging, high calorie-burning cardio.

“I find that cycling is the most beneficial cardio workout out there,” Simsic said.

Simsic says cycling mainly improves and increases the endurance of the muscles in the legs and is highly beneficial to your cardiovascular health.

“I recommend the spin classes to Laurier Brantford students because they’re fun. You can go with your friends, it’s only 45 minutes long and it requires little effort when you think about it – you just plant your bum on your bike and cycle.”

Some spin classes, such as Cycle and Abs, and Pump and Pedal, are combined with strength training. If you don’t want to give up the cycling but you also want to make time for the dumbbells and medicine balls, give the combined spin classes a go.

A majority of Laurier’s fitness classes are solely strength training. The variety ranges from workouts that focus on one section of your body, such as Rock Bottom and Core Strength, to full body workouts like Boot Camp, Tabata, Body Flex, High Velocity, Yoga and Total Body Tone.

Going to the gym on our own to do challenging workouts can take a lot of self-determination. At fitness classes, you just have to follow the instructors lead while being surrounded by good company.

“It’s a little bit more fun working out with peers in your university and you have people to motivate you,” said Shannen Head, the Tabata instructor.

Tabata classes are from 2 to 3 p.m. on Thursdays and introduce a very different approach to working your muscles. An exercise is repeated for a certain amount of minutes, but for those minutes the exercise is performed in an ongoing 20 seconds on, 10 seconds off rotation.

Each strength training class is structured differently. Some, like Boot Camp, are circuits with a series of workouts to complete while others focus more on exercises one at a time.

Some people want exercise and to break a good sweat, but aren’t fond of the muscle burning sensation. In this case Zumba or Latin Funk are good picks. In these classes you can let loose to some upbeat music that will have you exhausted and energized at the same time.

“I like it because it a fun way to exercise and it’s not traditional push-ups and sit-ups,” said Jensen Arsenault, a regular participant at Laurier Brantford’s Zumba classes. “It’s just dancing around to fun music which is something I love to do.”

With all of these options for working out on campus, there’s no excuse to let our “get more exercise” New Year’s resolutions slip between our fingers. Tie up your running shoes and we’ll see you at the fitness classes. Schedules of times and places can be found at the Hawk Desk or on Laurier Brantford’s Athletics and Recreation Facebook page.

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