Freedom. You are finally away from your parents, no curfews, no nagging, so what do you do with all this liberty… gain 15 pounds? Not this year. The No. 1 thing college students struggle with is creating a lifestyle with structure. Although Austin is a mecca for foodies, there are countless healthy options that your body will thank you for later. Living a healthy life does not mean you have to cut out the late night snacks and workout every day, but there are a few key things you must do in order to keep your body strong.
1.) Make a calendar and stick to it
People in college spend enormous amounts of time trying to figure out what needs to get done. As a college athlete, I had to balance school, practice, coaches meetings, tutors, etc. I depended on my calendar for everything. Every week I would add everything I needed to do onto the list. By creating a calendar, you make yourself get up and do things rather than sitting around, wasting time. I recommend buying a dry erase calendar, these can be bought for fairly cheap on Amazon, at Staples or any supply store.
2.) Sign up for workout classes
One of the best things about college is that you have free access to a gym, as well as incredible student discounts at workout places around Austin. But the first thing you have to do is SIGN UP for classes in advance. Many times people tell themselves they will work out when it’s convenient, but without signing up for the class, there is no incentive to go. Go online, book a few classes a week, and put them on your calendar! This way you will know exactly when they are, and it will force you to get up and go.
3.) Only drink when it’s worth it
No parents, endless amounts of beer, why wouldn’t you drink your life away in college? Well, the answer to this question is portion control. Not every night in college means you have to go out and consume massive amounts of alcohol. Decide in advance which nights you think are worth drinking. By doing this you will not only feel much better in the morning, but you will save your body. Drinking every night ruins your body’s routine and does not allow you to function at high levels. This being said, it will be much harder to live an active lifestyle if you are drinking every night.
4.) Don’t eat out 24/7
Austin offers a huge variety of food, but for some reason students stick with fast food. Why…? Because it’s cheap. What many people do not realize is that going grocery shopping is actually much cheaper than buying fast food for every meal. Places like Trader Joes and HEB offer premade meals that are many times less than four dollars. These meals are also much better for your body than fast food. With all the alcohol you are consuming, you need to be eating a balanced meal. This will not only keep your weight steady, but it will also make you feel more energized and will allow you to focus better in school.
Once you commit to a healthy lifestyle, your body will get accustomed to it. It will no longer be as hard to get yourself to workout, and you won’t crave all that fast food. By sticking to these four lifestyle tips you will not only look better, but you will feel significantly better.
Photo by Bella Edwards