Rec Center to host 2012 Penguin Olympics

The Andrews Student Recreation and Wellness Center is honoring the 2012 Summer Olympics by hosting its own games: the Penguin Olympics.

Nicole Haralambopoulos, a fitness and wellness programming intern, said she’s excited about the workout incentive program, which will begin Monday and run through Nov. 4.

“It gives our patrons an incentive to work out and be fit,” she said. “Students can take full advantage of what our facilities have to offer while also giving them health benefits.”

The Penguin Olympics is the first buddy-system incentive program the Rec Center has hosted. Participants will partner up and select a country to represent them on a first-come, first-served basis.

“Don’t be deterred from signing up just because you are by yourself [because] we can find you a teammate to pair up with,” Haralambopoulos said.

Brittany Stout, a senior exercise science major, decided that she and her partner would represent the island country of Seychelles. Stout is a regular at the Rec Center, working there five days a week while working out four days a week.

“We mapped out our way to the top,” Stout said. “Between working out and seeing the competition, we both will push each other to keep going to the Rec Center.”

The goal is to accumulate the weekly minimum number of points, which is 50, to receive 15 bonus points. The number of points awarded will vary depending on the activity that is completed.

For example, one point is awarded for 15 minutes spent lifting weights, using the cardio machines or running on the track. Two points will be awarded for 15 minutes spent playing basketball, racquetball or volleyball.

Climbing the rock wall and swimming for 15 minutes will result in three points being awarded. A half hour spent in a Group X class earns six points, while 45 minutes equals nine points and one hour awards 12 points.

Members of intramural teams are allowed to use one game a day to acquire six points. Intramural games, regardless of the sport, will count toward 30 minutes of cardio activity.

Participants will be in charge of logging their own points, but a Rec Center staff member will have to sign off at the end of the workout. Log sheets will be located in the strength and conditioning area, at the front desk where students swipe their IDs and at the Beeghly Center swimming pool.

All workouts must be completed in either the Rec Center or the Beeghly Center pool.

Participation is free. Those interested can sign up in the administration office, located in the Rec Center’s front lobby. 

The deadline to sign up is Sept. 24, which is two weeks after the event begins.

“With the two-week grace period for late entries, we hope to have over 100 participants,” Haralambopoulos said.

The first 10 percent of countries are awarded a gold medal, the second 10 percent are awarded a silver medal and the third 10 percent are awarded a bronze medal.

Individual medals will also be given out to the top 20 participants who earn the most individual points.

Stout said she believes the program will be successful. “It’s always nice to win prizes after you put in the hard work,” Stout said.