Staying active doesn’t necessarily mean working out for hours every day, but it’s important for maintaining a healthy lifestyle. For many of us college students, it can be easy to skip a workout to binge watch Netflix, get a ride or park right next to our classes, and jump in the car to grab a fast bite. These things are all EASY to do, but I encourage everyone to make their lifestyle a little healthier. Instead of having a friend give you a ride to campus, make the hike and get the steps on you fitbit. Take the stairs instead of the elevator, take yoga study breaks instead of donut breaks, take a walk in the sunshine instead of watching that extra episode on Netflix, your body will thank you!
Stretch Your Mind
Keeping a positive, healthy attitude is a big part of a healthy life. Juggling classes, a job and a social life can be a plateful for students. Sometimes the stress can seem never-ending but there are ways to help keep a positive attitude. One of my favorite ways to de-stress is through yoga or other meditation. There are great classes offered at the rec center at times convenient for students. Other great ways to keep a healthy mind are through journaling, reading and meditating.
Become A Morning Person
I know what you’re thinking, “What does being a morning person have to do with being healthy?” However, those who spend time preparing for the day are proven to make healthier decision throughout the day. Not everyone is going to have the same routine of the same amount of time each morning, but it is important to have a set routine. One of the most important things is ti drink water when you first wake up. This will re-hydrate you, jumpstart your metabolism, and flush out any toxins. Other good things to include in your morning routine are getting a balanced breakfast to help fuel your day, exercising or getting your blood flowing to wake you up for those 8 a.m. classes, and meditating or journaling to help fuel your mind. The most important thing to note when creating a routine that is right for you is allow yourself enough time to prepare for the day so that you don’t feel rushed.
Prep Your Meals
You are less likely to eat out if you have a meal already prepared. Through this requires some planning and preparation, you will actually save money by preparing your meals a few days ahead of time. This is a good way to maximize the produce you buy. Some good things to prepare ahead of time are rice, noodles, meats, and veggies. There is Tupperware available specifically for portioning your meals. A great way to change up the meals you prepare are using different spices. Preparing your meals is a great way to keep track of what you are putting in you body. Instead of getting out of class deciding what fast food sounds best because you don’t want to cook, you will have a healthy meal available to pop in the microwave.
Get More Sleep
This is something that is hard for us as students, but definitely worthwhile. Benefits of a full night of sleep include more energy, improved immunity, improved memory and ability to learn, and lower stress. This all sounds great, but HOW do I make time for my 8 hours? Coffee is a great way to wake up in the morning, but drinking excessive coffee throughout the day can actually harm your sleep cycles. Everyone needs a good cup of Radina’s coffee some mornings, but limit this to only a morning cup. Exercising during the day is a great way to get your body tired and ready for a good night of sleep. Your sleeping conditions also play a big part in your sleep quality, helping you wake up feeling refreshed. Having the right temperature and avoiding light or sound is key to allowing your body to go into deep sleep during the night.
Get a Routine
And stick to it! With everything I have said, you must be consistent and true to yourself to see any positive change in your life. Most importantly, don’t get down on yourself if you don’t maintain each aspect perfectly. You WILL have days that you need an afternoon cup of coffee or sleep through your 8 a.m. alarm. Maintaining a healthy lifestyle is about consistency, but take control of it and have fun!
Photographed by: Meg Shearer