By Alex Wiederspiel
West Virginia senior journalism student Jared Ramos is no stranger to the student recreation center. He can usually be found in downstairs weight rooms on the weekends. During the week, Jared frequents the treadmills, which are littered all throughout the three floors of West Virginia’s lavish workout facility. Jared’s a former high school football player and he was grateful for the chance to stay in shape.
“A lot of people go to college and gain weight. They call it the Freshman Fifteen, but I’ve seen people gain more than fifteen pounds in freshman year.”
When Jared was first starting here, he would try to lift every day. The hardest part for Jared (who is a television journalism student), was finding a way to fit it into his schedule.
“Classes, social life, and extra curricular activities have a way of pushing working out to the side. But it’s something that you need to do.”
Another obstacle for Jared, along with many people at West Virginia, is how crowded the student rec. center can become.
“During the week the place is packed between the hours of three and nine. I hate waiting to use equipment. That definitely turned me off of working out at times.”
But staying in shape is an important thing for Jared. Even if he has to go at odd hours of the night, early in the morning, or somewhere in between a class to avoid the high traffic times, he does it. He recognizes that he feels good when he’s in shape, and more importantly he feels good that he’s staying healthy. Heart disease continues to be the leading cause of early deaths in this country and he’s not planning on joining that statistic.
“It’s scary. There are so many different ways out there to pollute your body that even if you think you’re eating well you should still work out.”
The recreation center provides exactly what people who are trying to stay in shape are looking for. The four floor facility offers a diverse spread of activities. The ground floor has a rock climbing wall, ping-pong, basketball courts, a very large weight room, and treadmills for those interesting in some cardio. The first floor has even more basketball courts, badminton, and racquetball courts. The second floor has a second, smaller weight room, equipped with a plethora of different styles of treadmills. The highest floor is a track. Students can use any of these features as long as they have a valid student ID. Guests can get in for a ten dollar fee.
And to top it all off? A snack bar on the first floor that features delicious combinations of protein shakes, protein bars, pepperoni rolls, and other snacks. It’s a lifestyle that thousands of West Virginia students participate in to varying degrees. Jared says the hardest part is meeting people who have never even been to the student recreation center.
“You need to get off your lazy ass and go get yourself healthy.”
Perhaps not the most eloquent, but the mantra stands true. The recreation center is open until midnight Monday-Friday, until ten on Saturday, and until eight on Sunday. If you don’t have transportation, the WVU bus service runs seven days a week, and the PRT runs every day except for Sunday.
Jared may return to this blog at some time—perhaps during the pick-up football segment.
Alex Wiederspiel is a senior journalism student at West Virginia University and sports director at U92 Radio.