Let's face it- college is a crazy and overwhelming time in life, and it's typically when people are the most unhealthy. We all know that the freshman fifteen is a very real, very annoying thing. In college you usually eat a lot of junk food, don't get enough sleep, are stressed, don't drink enough water, etc. Pretty much the opposite of what you should be doing.
Before school started this semester, I decided that I wanted my freshman year to be my healthiest year yet. It's a long, slow journey, but I'm in it for the long haul. I've already made so many changes, like cutting out soda, limiting gluten and dairy, and getting up every day to workout.
Tip #1: STAY ACTIVE
It's time to get your sweat on! Exercise should not ever feel like a chore. Find something that you enjoy doing, and schedule your workouts like appointments, so that you never miss one! I like to get up early before school and do a workout from the Tone It Up youtube channel, or I'll go for a two mile jog when I get out of classes in the afternoon.
Tip #2: STAY HYDRATED
I know you've heard it a thousand times, but staying hydrated is so important! We need to keep the focus on water here. Things like coffee, soda, and alcohol are all going to dehydrate you. One cup of coffee a day is fine, as is one or two cups of tea. My trick for getting in enough water is to find a water bottle that you really like, and carry it with you everywhere! Calculate how much water you're aiming to drink, (It should be half of your body weight in ounces) and then figure out how many times you need to refill your water bottle. If you find water boring then add something to spice it up like stevia, ice cubes, lemon slices, mint leaves, or sliced strawberries.
Tip #3: PICK A WORKOUT BUDDY
Everything's better with a friend! Find someone that you can workout with sometimes, whether you go on a run together, go to a spin class, try out a new yoga studio, or do a hiit routine in the park.
Tip #4: EVERYTHING IN MODERATION
This is really your key to a balanced diet. Everything in moderation! You're in college, so don't put too much pressure on yourself to be perfect. I try to follow the 80/20 rule. I tend to eat pretty clean during the week, but on the weekends I cut myself a little slack. If I go out with friends I want to be able to have a burger and fries, knowing that I worked hard during the week, and it's okay to indulge.
All that being said, there are some foods that just shouldn't be in your diet period. Soda, candy, fast food, overly processed food, and lots of alcohol, really shouldn't hold a place on your plate.
Tip #5: GET OUTSIDE
Just get outside and breathe deep. Get outside, go for a sunset walk, and reflect on your day. Go play tennis with a friend, go for a hike, or throw a Frisbee in the park. Grab your journal and find a quiet spot to think. Pack a picnic and go find a new favorite spot. Just get outside and enjoy nature!
Tip #6: FAIL TO PLAN, PLAN TO FAIL
Preparation is always key! Sunday's are my prep day of the week. I make a schedule with each of my workouts for the day, as well as packing my backpack, picking up any groceries I need, laying out outfits for the week, planning what I'm going to eat, and prepping my meals for the next day. The night before I will fill up my water bottle, put a container of mixed nuts in my backpack, cook fish and veggies for lunch, and lay out anything I need for breakfast. Planning ahead is the top tool to success.
If y'all want more healthy living posts, let me know! I love staying active and being healthy, and I love writing about it too!