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Train body and mind — May 15, 2013 at 10:55 pm

How to Make Health and Fitness a Priority in College

One of the fascinating things about college is that while you’ll probably find yourself studying harder than you ever have in your entire life which means that your brain will probably get a major “workout”, sometimes the long hours sitting in class and the evening longer hours doing your homework can tempt you into not making the best health decisions. For instance, if you’re running late, you may opt to drive to the building where you class is being held instead of walk and if you didn’t put a healthy snack into your book bag, you might just get some chips and a soda out of a vending machine on the way.

It’s this kind of thinking that actually causes many college students to gain as much as 5-10 pounds each year that they are in school and if you’re not careful to embrace that reality, that could really start to add up. That’s why we wanted to provide you with five ways that you can make health and fitness a priority even in college. That way, your body can stay as strong and fit as your mind is while you’re in school.

Walk (everywhere). A lot of colleges tend to have a pretty vast campus and so if you opt to walk to your classes rather than ride to them, you can easily get a couple of miles (if not more) of cardio in by the end of the day. Oh, and if you’re carrying a backpack, look at that as having some extra “free weight” to help to build up your muscle tone in the process.

Put some snacks in your bag. If you find yourself getting hungry throughout the day, rather than grabbing the closest junk food in your vicinity, why not go with some healthy snacks from your refrigerator instead? Nuts, dried fruit, raw carrot sticks, granola bars or even a bar of dark chocolate are all foods that can boost your energy levels without piling on a lot of unwanted fat.

Sign up for an intramural sport. Are you someone who doesn’t really want to take advantage of your college gym and all of the equipment that it has to offer? (Although it’s worth noting that if you’re a student, it’s free of charge to access.) Well, why not sign up for an intramural sport instead? It’s another way to get your cardio going; however, being that you’re playing a game, it might not feel quite so much like traditional exercise.

Drink lots of water. If you asked a lot of college students what the popular drinks on campus were, a lot of them would probably say “soda” and “beer”. Here’s one thing that both of them have in common: a ton of calories. Now, we’re not saying to go without having those kinds of drinks from time to time, we just recommend that your “main drink of choice” be water above anything else. It’s calorie-free and just as, if not more, refreshing.

Get plenty of sleep. If you asked a personal trainer or someone getting their health MBA online what they feel is a good tip for staying healthy in college, they would probably tell you to get as much sleep as you can. That’s because there are many studies to support the fact that sleep deprivation can lead to reduced brain function, fatigue, headaches and weight fluctuation; all of which can make it hard to focus on your studies. So, if you can fit 6-8 hours in each night, try and do so. Both you and your college grades will be so glad that you did.

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