Staying fit and healthy in college can be a challenge!
Every high school senior has heard of the “Freshman Fifteen” that so many students gain in their first year of college. But don’t worry! You can avoid the extra weight if you start on the right foot with healthy lifestyle habits.
College life can tempt you into bad food or fitness choices, but it also provides all the resources you need to be healthier than ever before. Let’s look at some important ways to do it:
Scope Out Your Healthy Dining Options
Many colleges require students living on campus to have a meal plan, giving them access to a certain number of meals every day. It can be easy to fall into the habit of going for quick bites that aren’t very healthy, so make time to check out the cafeteria and learn everything it has to offer. Fresh fruits, vegetables, and healthy meal options are out there somewhere!
Consider Making Some Food at Home
Even if you have a meal plan, it’s a good idea to keep essentials in your dorm room. By making healthy eating convenient, you avoid pitfalls. For example, keep organic rice in the cupboard instead of microwavable ramen. Have a fruit salad instead of ordering pizza. You don’t have to eat healthy all the time, but choosing a healthier meal option a few times a week is a great start.
Use Athletic Facilities When You Can
These days, colleges almost always have a gym and a track, and many have a pool. When teams aren’t using these for practice, they are usually available for any student to use. Find the physical activity you like best and incorporate it into a weekly routine. Even if team sports aren’t for you, you can usually find informal fitness classes that will help you stay fit and make friends!
Get Enough Sleep
If you don’t get enough sleep, your metabolism and many other body systems won’t be as efficient as they could be. Don’t stuff your schedule with too many late-night classes, extracurriculars that require you to be up late, or late social activities. Leave time for sleep!
It’s a good idea to start thinking seriously about getting fit in your college years. Remember that you should have reasonable goals. Fitness is about doing what’s best for you and your body, not fitting into the mold of a movie star or magazine cover. Even healthy habits can be harmful if you overdo them. Have fun, be yourself, and listen to the wisdom of your body to maintain a healthy lifestyle!