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GROUP FITNESS NEWS | ISSUE #2

We believe physical activity and exercise are vital to the well-being of every person. Here in Campus Recreation, we are actively working on virtual opportunities which will allow our #ActiveILLINI to access the resources they need to thrive in the classroom and in life. We encourage you to reach out to us if you have thoughts on how to help the Campus Rec community stay connected or ideas for resources we can provide during this time.

Please Note: The Les Mills 60-day free trial link was not working last week. We have received a new link here and it has been working for users. Have fun and enjoy! 

 
 
INTRAMURAL TRIVIA SUNDAY

Each Sunday at 7 p.m., we will host a Trivia Night for Intramurals! Members, faculty, staff, students and friends will have an hour to log on to kahoot.it, type in the ID number found on our Facebook and Instagram channels, and take the quiz. Winners will receive a FREE Intramural Champ shirt! Check out our triva schedule and best of luck to you!

Pop Culture – April 12 
Sports – April 19 
General Knowledge – April 26 
Name That Song! – May 3 

 
 
THE CHECK-IN: FIND YOUR MOTIVATION

With gyms and health clubs currently closed, many of us find ourselves adapting our fitness routines to remain active while at home. Engaging in physical activity has many physical and psychological benefits, but at-home workouts are not without their challenges. A recent piece in The Atlantic offers guidance when it comes to staying active while practicing physical distancing, and addresses the challenge of remaining motivated when exercising at home. Here are a few suggestions:

  • Plan out your workout in advance. Deciding on your exercise plan at the start of the week (or even the night before) and putting it on your calendar allows you to integrate your workouts into your work/school schedule and sends the message that physical activity is just as important as your other daily tasks.
  • Set the mood. If possible, try to separate your workout from your work by exercising in a room in which you’re not usually sleeping or working. Or get creative by rearranging furniture to carve out space or lighting a candle to set the mood for that yoga routine you’ve been meaning to try.
  • Find a (virtual) accountability buddy. Stay connected with friends and loved ones by planning virtual workouts together! In addition to providing extra incentive to show show up for that workout you planned, virtual fitness meet-ups can provide social interaction and encouragement which can help you stick to your routine long-term.
 
 
CAMPUS RECREATION VIRTUAL PROGRAMMING PAGE NOW LIVE!

Looking for virtual fitness programming and resources? Campus Recreation has launched a ‘Virtual Programming’ page dedicated to supporting your home wellness needs. You can find the virtual group fitness schedule, information about free trials of home workout apps and platforms, healthy recipes, and more. This page will be regularly updated as new resources become available.

Click here to explore Campus Recreation Virtual Programming

 
 
RUNNING ILLINI LEAGUE

Join the league today! The Running Illini League is your chance to stay active and still be competitive. This cumulative self-recording running program will be during a five-week period (March 30 to May 4) and be available to runners of all levels. Runners will get the opportunity to track their progress by uploading screenshots of their completed workouts to IMLeagues.

Sign in or create an IMLeagues account, sign up, and then grab your running shoes. Registration closes April 19 at midnight!

 
 
VIRTUAL GROUP FITNESS SCHEDULE

In order to continue to serve the Campus Recreation community, our group fitness instructors are offering live virtual group fitness classes and meet-ups throughout the week. These virtual workouts will be streamed via Zoom (click here to learn more about using Zoom) and offer a great way to add some exercise, routine, and social interaction to your day!

Click here to view this week's virtual class schedule: April 13-17

 
 
WEEKLY WORKOUT PLAN

The Mayo Clinic recommends incorporating the following five elements into your regular exercise routine: aerobic activity, strength training, core exercises, balance training, and flexibility/stretching. The workout plan included below incorporates a variety of formats that will allow you to meet these goals. Just pick the combination of workouts that work for you!

Click here to view this week’s workout plan.

 
 
MAKING SPACE FOR MINDFULNESS

We are all adjusting to a new normal. Campus Recreation Yoga instructor Michelle explains that it’s important be mindful of this incredible adjustment. “It’s hard to compare this amount of unexpectedness to what we “normally” experience day by day, and we do need to give ourselves time to adjust to the new situation we're in, but this quote is helpful in that it reminds us to breathe, rest, and take a break,” she says. She urges her students adopt a mindfulness practice if they have not already done so. For inspiration, she shares this wisdom by Buddhist teacher and author Pema Chodron:

“Our energy and the energy of the universe are always in flux, but we have little tolerance for this unpredict-abilty, and we have little ability to see ourselves and the world as an exciting, fluid situation that is always fresh and new... The source of our unease is the unfulfillable longing for a lasting certainty and security, for something solid to hold on to. Unconsciously we expect that if we could just get the right job, the right partner, the right something, our lives would run smoothly. When anything unexpected or not to our liking happens, we think something has gone wrong...we stay caught in a fearful, narrow holding pattern of avoiding any pain and continually seeking comfort. This is the universal dilemma. When we pause, allow a gap, and breathe deeply, we can experience instant refreshment. Suddenly we slow down, look out, and there’s the world...momentarily our mind is still and we are not pulled in or pushed away by what we are experiencing.”

If you are interested in beginning a mindfulness practice, check out these tips

 
 
MUSIC TO MOTIVATE YOUR WORKOUT

A growing body of evidence suggests that listening to music while exercising can improve the quality of your workout. This week’s featured playlist was curated by Carrie, a second-year masters student in Civil Engineering and Campus Rec Barre and HIIT instructor. This playlist combines fun, diverse music with upbeat vibes to make your cardio or strength workout more lively and enjoyable! If you like this playlist, you can find many more on Carrie’s Spotify page (username: cleibens). 

Carrie’s Hype HIIT Jams

 
 
A QUICK BITE FROM THE INSTRUCTIONAL KITCHEN

Tuscan Mac and Cheese

Trying to spice up that box of pasta in the back of your cupboard? Try this veggie-packed Tuscan mac and cheese!

Ingredients

  • 8 oz macaroni (or pasta of choice)
  • 2 T. butter
  • 3 t. garlic, finely chopped
  • 2 T. all-purpose flour
  • 2 ½ cups heavy cream
  • Black pepper (to taste)
  • 1 t. Italian Seasoning
  • ½ cup shredded cheese
  • ¾ cup roasted red pepper, roughly chopped
  • 2 cups spinach, roughly chopped
  • ½ cup mushrooms, finely chopped

Instructions

  1. Cook pasta according to box directions until al dente. Drain and return to pot.
  2. In a large skillet over medium heat, melt butter. Stir in garlic and cook for 1-2 minutes.
  3. Sprinkle flour over butter and garlic and stir until all flour is incorporated and the mixture is thickened.
  4. Gradually whisk in heavy cream until the mixture is smooth.
  5. Turn heat to low and season sauce with salt, papper, and Italian seasoning. Add in shredded cheese and stir until cheese is melted.
  6. Fold pasta into sauce until well coated.
  7. Add roasted red peppers, spinach, and mushrooms and stir over low heat until spinach is tender.
  8. Serve.