The Early Bird Gets the Exercise


By Kelsey Rettke

For early-risers and people who want to get the most productivity out of their day, the workout room in the Sports Center opens way too late. Even by sleep-obsessed college students’ standards, 8 a.m. is simply too late to be able to work out before a morning class.

Director of Athletics and Recreation Peggy Carl says that, while there is some interest in the Sports Center opening earlier, there are just not enough students to justify opening the doors at an earlier hour. “While opening at 6 a.m. would certainly be more beneficial to the students and staff who wish to work out at that time, history has shown us that this number is indeed quite limited thus making opening at 6 a.m. not a cost effective choice. In fact, a couple of years ago we tried this on a Monday/Wednesday/Friday basis and while some folks did show up to work out then, it was short-lived and only lasted a semester.”

A few people may argue that working out can be done in-between classes during the day. I find that, when I’m already in the routine of classes and my school day, I have no motivation to go work out in the middle of the day. Not only would you have to walk back to the residential side of campus, you would have to change clothes, get sweaty and take a shower, all in time for your next class.

Sure, the Sports Center keeps its doors open until 11 p.m. every night. If you like to have your day end—like me—with studying, doing homework, and going to club meetings, venturing outside in the dark and cold to workout is a not going to happen. This is also a problem for those who, like me, work nightly during the week.

The best, and most logical, time to work for this group then would be in the morning. Lawrence opens its fitness center at 6:45 a.m. on weekdays, closing at 11 p.m. Macalester also opens its doors at 6 a.m. on weekdays.

Opening the Fitness Center earlier doesn’t require a student receptionist. Why not let our key cards do the work? We could swipe the card, the doors would open for us, and we would be able to go downstairs and use the exercise room.

I don’t know about anyone else, but I don’t need supervision when I’m on the elliptical machines. Also, as Carl says, this would “decrease the number of non-Beloit users” trying to finagle their way into the Sports Center.

“Opening the building via student ID card access is definitely one way to increase accessibility. We would still likely turn the system ‘on’ or ‘off’ on some kind of hourly basis, dependent on when we had students working however. We employ students to oversee the Fitness Center (and pool), however as a safety precaution, not as an admission monitor, so the idea of the Fitness Center and/or pool being available when students are not working would still not be feasible,” says Carl.

But honestly, how many times have you seen a student monitor watching you in the Fitness Center? All the times I’ve been there I’ve never actually seen anyone keeping watch over me to make sure I don’t kill myself on one of the machines. The supervising angle seems moot.

I have found that getting up early not only allows more time in the day to get everything done, it creates mental confidence, a sense of accomplishment that allows you to go into the entire day with the attitude that, by 9 a.m., you have already accomplished so much. Therefore, you are able to be productive throughout the remainder of the day. It creates good organizational skills and responsibility.

The Sports Center should reconsider this proposal and open its doors for the Fitness Center at 6 a.m. instead of 8 a.m. Though it was tried in the past with few results, why not give the idea another go?

The Round Table wants to know how you feel about this issue. If the Sports Center opened earlier, would you use it?



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