Working out for Credit

by Sarah Canfield

We all know how dreadful the gym can be, especially when there are countless distractions to keep you away. That huge pile of homework you’ve been putting off or all your friends heading down to the cafeteria for free ice cream can be more appealing than the gym.
Some will argue that just getting to the gym is the hardest part—but the actual act of burning a few hundred calories isn’t necessarily a walk in the park, either. It’s uncomfortable lifting weights and running on the treadmill, sweat pouring down your face, with an extremely buff football player strutting around you lifting more than your own body weight. This uneasy feeling of being at the gym got me thinking, “I’m sure there’s a more productive way to work out with fewer wandering eyes watching my shirt turn from light gray to charcoal.”
A great workout accompanied by good friends and loud music.

I’d heard of taking skiing, snowboarding, billiards, and bowling for credit and wondered if this list of “activity” classes offered any high endurance courses. After a quick search on the webpage, I found a list of 16 activities courses, ranging from Beginning Yoga to 5/10K Race Training. Scanning the list, Power Cycling – Indoors caught my eye. My hobbies include sports like skiing, trail running, hiking, and yoga, so having strong stable legs is essential. I thought, “What better way to prepare for a powder day at Bridger Bowl, while receiving MSU credit, than with a mandatory cycling class?”

During the first class we learned the proper bike set-up and did a light workout. The girl-to-guy ratio in the class was about 15:1, which was perfect; the fewer attractive guys staring at me while I drip sweat, the better. It seemed like the class was going to be a relatively easy credit. However, on the second day, the instructor wasted no time breaking us in. After a five-minute warm-up we were climbing hills, sprinting, and jumping till we couldn’t feel our legs. The next day, walking to class was a challenge and sitting-down was even harder. I’ve always been an avid athlete, so being this sore came as a surprise. As the weeks kept on, the class grew smaller as people dropped out, and my legs became accustomed to the constant torture. It was an awarding feeling transforming my body with a workout routine I’d never have chosen on my own.
After a year of cycling class I was ready to take on Granite Peak.

The class is not lax—only three non-participations are allowed, no matter what the reason, and the 4th and 5th non-participations have to be made up. After that, you’re out of the class. Students must also pass one bike set-up test and one written test. 
Be warned: this course is addictive. I started this class the fall semester of 2012 and I’m still participating in it. My roommate and I have taken it together for the past two semesters; having a partner makes it more enjoyable and easier to attend. For more information on how to get involved in any activity course visit the MSU website


by Caitlin Sundborg

It’s inevitable. Eventually your parents will get sick of you avoiding their phone calls and will show up on your doorstep. Avoid the circling hour and a half of  ”I don’t know, what do you want to do?” and show your parents a side of Bozeman they can actually appreciate.
Whether the cash is flowing from your parents’ wallets or your own, Bozeman and its surrounding areas offer an abundance of activities to get your “bond on.” 
Tour the campus you will call home for the next 4 years
  • Hike the “M”—and make sure to check it off your Bozeman Bucket List—at sunset for a family photo shoot, or hightail it up to Hyalite for a full day of pictures.
  • Tell your parents to “park it” and “shop till you drop”. Stroll down Main Street and please mom and dad with cool shops like Schnee’s, Girls Outdoors, and Zocalo Coffee House 
  • Utilize your temporary influx of income and chow down. For an affordable full belly, start your day with Nova Café, head to Community Food Co-op for some mid-day munching, and dive into Dave’s Sushi for dinner.
  • Last but not least, tour the campus. Your parents will appreciate being able to at least picture where their money is going.
Big Sky
Hop in the car and take the parents for a ride. It’ll give them a chance to pester you about what you’re doing with your life, and in between questions you can show them the alpine beauty of Big Sky.
  • Explore the Town Center and grab a bite at the Lotus Pad, or snag some new gear at Gallatin Alpine Sports or Grizzly Outfitters.
  • Try taking them to the disc golf course to enjoy some moderate hiking and let them attempt to understand the combination of golf and frisbee your generation has made so popular.
  • In the winter, shred some powder (or groomers) at Big Sky—you can’t go wrong with the biggest skiing in America.
Get Outta Town
Of course, if your parents aren’t citified chickens afraid of a little adventure, you can also get a little more remote.
Soak it up at Norris Hot Springs 

• Score points with mom while enjoying a soak and poolside tunes at Norris Hot Springs or find some warm water closer to town at Bozeman Hot Springs. Practice for your marketing midterm and talk dad into treating mom—and you—to an overnight trip to Gardiner, where you can take a soak in the Boiling River and enjoy a relaxing stay at the Cowboys Lodge and Grille.
  Fulfill the Montana stereotype and saddle-up with Absaroka Beartooth Outfitters. Hop on a horse for a half-day of riding and enjoy an authentic cowboy cookout. Yee-haw!
Visiting in the summer? Hit the water or fly through the sky with Montana Whitewater & Zipline. Half-day adventures of both activities get the adrenaline pumping, all while enjoying the sunshine.

So if your parents are coming to town this weekend, don’t show them how you really live—it will only scare them. Instead, show them the real Bozeman and why so many locals love to call this town home.


Erasing the Yoga Stigma

by Anya Bean
Your Yoga studio 

High-octane activities such as skiing, hiking, running, biking, and surfing have always been my idea of exercise. Growing up playing hockey and ski racing made me avoid any kind of meditation or mindfulness at all cost. Past yoga experiences always found the clock capturing my attention more than the exercise, thinking about anything but the stretch, the pose, or the breathing. No talking? For an entire hour? No thanks. Yoga has always seemed a new-age fad—a cop-out for actually exercising. Then one of my girlfriends proposed a challenge: a different activity every month for a year, with October’s activity being yoga.

With each day of the yoga challenge, yoga has become more of an addiction to body and mind. The results have been amazing—increased strength, presence of mind, and improved sleep, to name a few. To every athlete, irrespective of sport or discipline:  implementing yoga will enhance your ability. For ski racers: all skiers’ hips are tight. When a group of skiers gets together and sits with their legs crossed, it is pathetic.
Yoga can strengthen your ski legs

Yoga improves joint and muscular flexibility, which is imperative for the body’s overall health. Enhanced joint and muscle pliancy translates to greater range of motion, which in turn, decreases the chance of an overuse injury.

Consistent practice of the various yoga poses helps build strength and balance. Core stability is enhanced and subsequently reduces overuse injury by strengthening the muscles surrounding the more utilized muscles, creating a more balanced overall strength. By practicing yoga, balance is improved. Better balance and coordination means enhanced control over the body, which for any athlete, leads to better technique and form.

Improve your body and mind

The physical benefits of yoga for the athlete are huge, but they’re nothing in comparison to the more abiding benefits. Most people, particularly athletes, tend to think of yoga as boring. Everyone at MSUis busy and if another activity is added to the schedule, it better be worth it. In order to benefit from yoga, one must commit to the hour they are practicing. Others, mostly non-athletes, think of yoga as a way to tighten the core, flatten the stomach, and tone that butt. Sure, it does that, but so can many other exercises,right?

Yoga was a routine designed not to give you a nice butt, but to improve your ability to quiet and control the impulse of the mind, and to center focus and promote serenity by silencing the endless mental chatter.
When you look at the highest levels of sport, all athletes are talented. They train hard, they practice technique, and they do everything they can to take them to the top level. Many athletes are forgetting a crucial part of the puzzle: a sound mind. Yoga can not only improve sleep, reduce stress, quell negative mental chatter, and manage fear, it can change the entire approach to training and racing.
By incorporating yoga into your schedule, you will become better at what you do whether you are a competitor, a recreational athlete, or a couch potato.
Here’s one of our favorite yoga studios:
Intro Month: $30

Single Class $10

10 Class Card: $75

Month Unlimited: $75

Auto Monthly: $65 (no contract, no fees)

Student Auto Monthly: $50 (with valid high school or MSU student ID ONLY)

Pimpin’ the Pocket Guide 2013 Contest!

Looking to score some sweet prizes, or maybe you just need something to do over the weekend? Grab an MSU Pocket Guide and take a swing at our 2013 Pimpin’ the Pocket Guide contest. Just take a picture of yourself, in some place cool or doing something awesome, while showing off the Guide.

Enjoying the Guide on the Madison River this summer
Photos can be emailed to [email protected]. We’ll upload them to our Facebook page and award weekly prizes for the best photos – expect outdoor gear, gift certificates to area businesses, and other random swag. At the end of the semester, one lucky entrant will score the grand prize: a brand-new Fuze backpack from Mystery Ranch.

Just make sure you get your outdoor adventures in before we’re all snowed in – but then again, there are plenty of adventures to be had after the snow falls.

Check out these submissions to the contest. At the head of the herd is our first week’s winner, Meghan O’Neal, who got creative with a metal bull. 

Everyone likes guide-fed beef
Take the Pocket Guide on an adventure!

Or you don’t even have to leave the house, just as long as the photos are cool!

Won’t you join this lonely Pocket Guide?
Now, all the rest of you: grab a guide, get out there, and start snapping photos!

Avoiding the “Freshman 15″

by Steve Conant

Don’t let it happen to you 

You are now transitioning to an important part of your life, when your adult lifestyle begins to develop. In college, you’ll have to study more than in high school, which means increased time sitting. Even though many college students are less physically active, the common tendency is for students to eat too much: snacking, larger portions, and seconds. It’s very likely that your liquid diet will increase as well. So here’s the equation (you don’t even have to write it down): calories consumed and calories burned equals weight management. Here are a few suggestions to be active and watch what you eat.

MSU’s Marga Hosaeus
 Fitness Center
The best way to stay on an exercise program is to realize that it’s attainable. When you can fit in 15 minutes of walking for a study break, do it! You’ll re-energize and burn more calories than you would have sitting. MSU also built a great gym for you and guess what, your membership is included in your tuition. So use it and enjoy it! If you’re not currently an exerciser, try to find a friend to exercise with and set a schedule; it’ll help you to honor your exercise time.

Needless to say, Bozeman is great town in which to be active. We have beautiful surroundings and a great in-town trail system. The Linear Trail is only five blocks from campus and it links up with enough other trails to train for a marathon. So if you have an hour break, head out for a walk or run.
There’s no lack of hiking and biking trails around Bozeman

As for diet, only take one portion at the food service. Trying to include fruits and vegetables as part of that portion. Remember that drinks have calories; those double-white-chocolate machiatos and energy drinksare not the same as drinking water. And while snacking happens in college, try to choose healthy snacks. It’s pretty easy to get into the habit of eating some very bad foods on a daily basis. It’s equally easy to get into the habit of eating fruits, nuts, or trail mix instead.

Steve Conant has a master’s degree in exercise physiology from MSU.