10 Realistic Tips for College Students Wanting To Live A Healthier Lifestyle

10 Realistic Tips for College Students Wanting To Live A Healthier Lifestyle

Because who ACTUALLY drinks a gallon of water a day??

Whether you're fresh into college or fresh out of college, the "Freshman Fifteen" is a real thing. However, it isn't the end of the world. To get back in shape and love your body again (or just rediscover a healthy balance), here are ten realistic tips for college students looking to get back on track!

1. Drink half a glass of water every hour.

I know from experience it is quite difficult to drink eight glasses of water a day (especially when you don't drink eight glasses of anything in a day), but if you cut the water consumption into intervals, it makes it much easier to get through. Even if you're only awake for twelve hours, that's still six glasses of water, and I'm sure that's more than what you usually drink, anyway.

(Also, always order water when you go out to eat. It will save you calories and money!)

2. Swap chips for popcorn.

My whole world changed when I discovered Angie's BOOMCHICKAPOP. Not only are her Sea Salt Popcorn and Lightly Sweet Popcorn healthier alternatives for fried potato chips and other sweets at 35 calories per cup, but when you need a fix, she also offers eleven additional flavors guaranteed to blow your mind and your taste buds.

(You can find BOOMCHICKAPOP small bags at Walmart and Target, sometimes on sale at Crest, or you can order bigger bags via Amazon.)

3. Wear fun socks when you work out.

I'm a former college athlete, and one of my favorite parts of game day was wearing my fun socks under my pants. We also had crazy sock contests at morning workouts to lighten the mood. Socks are cheap, and they become a motivator to go to the gym, so you can show them off. (You could even have a weekly contest with your workout partner to see who buys lunch!)

4. Have a vegetable with every meal at lunch and dinner.

As much as I wish otherwise, french fries aren't a vegetable. However, that doesn't mean you should eat a burger or chicken nuggets by themselves. Buy some frozen veggies, keep them in the freezer, and then make a batch for the week to go with your meals. You could also buy some fresh and dip them in hummus or light ranch as a snack.

5. Invest in a baby crockpot.

A one and a half to two-quart crockpot costs around $20, and it makes just the perfect amount of food for you (with leftovers) or you plus one. A crockpot is ideal for college students on the go because you throw the ingredients in, turn the dial, and you don't have to do anything else until it's time to eat!

6. Work out when and how it is convenient for you.

I use workouts in the morning as a way to wake up, and I like to get them out of the way first thing. However, if you dread when your alarm goes off, don't workout in the morning. When you're up at midnight binge watching Netflix, you could use that time to hit the gym instead.

As well, don't feel like you need to be at the gym for hours on end (unless that's what you enjoy). You can get just as much done in a concentrated 30-45 minutes as you can stretching out your workouts.

7. Swap out regular pasta and bread for whole grain.

Bread and pasta aren't great for you anyway, but whole grain is definitely better for you than white. It's less processed, and it provides more nutrients than regular bread/pasta. Throw in a can of tuna, and you have a quick, easy, and tasty pasta salad with good carbs, protein, and fats (or you can add a boiled egg and some light mayo to the tuna for the same effect on a sandwich!).

8. Get your sleep.

I know this is easier said than done, but I also know you can find ways to get more sleep. Whether it's a fifteen-minute nap in between classes or going to bed an hour earlier, sleep is essential for your physical and mental health and productivity.

9. Have two cheat days.

To be completely honest, it just isn't realistic for me to go six days straight with no mishaps (and I know I'm not alone!). Contrary to popular belief, it is okay to have two days a week to treat yourself. It's so much easier to go two or three days with a break, and this personally helped me stay consistent instead of having a cravings meltdown on healthy day four or five.

10. Moderate your alcohol intake.

I won't even lie to you... I love wine. However, I can't drink a bottle by myself every night and expect nothing to happen. You can go out with your friends on the weekends, or have a drink at home after a rough day of class, but be mindful of how much you put in your body. You can overdrink your calories just as much as you can overeat them.

So college friends, take care of yourselves. Find your balance and get back on track to a healthier you. You can do it!

Cover Image Credit: Work It Daily

Popular Right Now

Everything You Need To Know About BANG Energy Drinks

Say goodbye to your favorite pre-workout drink.

BANG energy drinks from VPX Sports are the hottest new products for athletes everywhere. On every can, you'll find their catchphrase "Potent Brain & Body Fuel" and it gives you just that. Clean energy, laser-sharp focus, and no sugar induced crashes are just a few of the reasons these bad boys are flying off the shelves faster than retailers can keep them stocked. Haven't heard of them? Sound too good to be true? Let me answer your questions.

What is it? It's an energy drink that's kind of like your typical Red Bull or Monster. It's a perfect substitution for pre-workout supplements or coffee.

Who's it meant for? Anyone! A better question to ask is, "Who isn't this drink meant for?" On the can, you'll find a recommendation for no one under the age of 18 to consume the drink. You also may want to steer clear of it if you're sensitive to stimulants like caffeine.

What's in it? BANG energy drinks contain zero calories, zero carbohydrates, and zero sugar. But what you can find are BCAA's, CoQ10, creatine, and copious amounts of caffeine. These are things athletes often take as supplements.

What are BCAA's? BCAA's are Branched Chain Amino Acids. They are known to stimulate protein synthesis, increase muscle function, decrease your soreness after a workout, and even aid in repairing damaged muscles.

What's CoQ10? Coenzyme Q10 is found in the mitochondria of your cells and sparks energy production. It helps produce energy your body needs for cell growth and maintenance. People often take this as a dietary supplement when they feel tired or lethargic.

What's super creatine? Creatine does a great job in enhancing athletic performance by aiding growth of lean body mass (AKA muscle). When you take creatine orally, the amount in your muscles increase and helps regenerate ATP more efficiently. According to the nutrition label, this so-called "super" creatine is bonded to Leucine to make Creatyl-L-Leucine. On SupplementReviews.com, a VPX Sports representative allegedly said the following about the Super Creatine in the drink:

"The creatine in there is actually something very special...it is the world's only water stable creatine. It is Creatine-Leucine peptide. Think of this...if you mix creatine in water, it sinks and if you mix leucine in water, it floats....if you combine the two into a peptide, it creates a water soluble and water-stable form of creatine. It also has a fatty acid chain that makes it easier to cross the blood brain barrier. The focus of the super creatine is not for muscle function, but for cognition...by combining this form of creatine with caffeine, it works synergistically for mental focus."

How much caffeine is in one can? In one can of BANG, you'll be blessed with 300mg of caffeine. This is the equivalent to over three cups of coffee.

Is that even safe? Yeah, it is. In order for the caffeine in the energy drink to be lethal at any capacity, I would have to drink 30.7 cans.

So, what are the downsides? There are two things that come to mind. One is that consumers have no idea how much BCAA's, CoQ10, or creatine is actually in the drink. It could very likely be trace amounts too small to do anything beneficial. Two, BANG energy drinks do not go through the FDA approval process.

Is it really that good? Well, out of 113 reviews of the product on Bodybuilding.com, there's an average 9.6 overall rating. Most reviews comment on the quality of the energy, the cognitive focus, and the non-existent crash once the drink wears off.

What kind of flavors can I get? There are currently eight BANG energy drink flavors on the market: Black Cherry Vanilla, Cotton Candy, Sour Heads, Star Blast, Blue Razz, Champagne Cola, Power Punch, and Lemon Drop.

Where can I buy BANG energy drinks? You can find BANG energy drinks at Amazon, your local GNC or Vitamin Shoppe retailers, Bodybuilding.com, VPX Sports' website, some gas stations, and privately owned retailers.

How expensive are they? This depends on where you make your purchase. The cheapest place to purchase your BANG energy drinks is at Bodybuilding.com for about $2.00 per can. You can find similar prices on Amazon and at your local retailers. The energy drinks are most expensive through the VPX website where you'll pay about $2.75 per can.

How does BANG compare to other energy drinks? I'll give you some data on nutrition facts and you can make your decisions based on that:

16 oz. BANG: 300mg caffeine, 0g carbohydrates, 0g sugar.

16 oz. Monster Energy (regular): 160mg caffeine, 54g carbohydrates, 54g sugar

16 oz. Red Bull (regular): 160mg caffeine, 56g carbohydrates, 56g sugar

16 oz. Rockstar (regular): 144g caffeine, 54g carbohydrates, 54g sugar

Cover Image Credit: Youtube

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I've been single my whole life, And this is what I want you to know

A letter from your friendly neighborhood single girl


Dear person reading this,

Look at that-- a clickbait title. Hello, fellow person who I'm sure has had a relationship so you clicked on this article. Yes, I have been single my whole life, almost 2 decades of it. And this seems like a clickable, exciting topic; I have kept the idea to write about this topic on the top of my head for a long time. But the more I thought about my singleness, throughout high school and into my first year of college, I am struck by how much of an important fact about my life.

I have found quite the opposite than the normal conclusion of this sad, lonely fact to others that I have not had a boyfriend or even a date. I've found that those who care or make you feel like less for your ability to play a game and take the time for a relationship like it's something to be won or achieved, like to be in a relationship is a level in growing up that must be achieved to have worth. They are just as wrong as any other measurement determining your worth.

Being the single girl is not a breeze. As a girl especially, you have to learn to be tough, to dismiss the pity that comes from people who know that you've always been single as well as the chilling rationalization from women and men about why you weren't "chosen."

But being the girl without a boyfriend is only a problem if you let it define who you are. And while I am bad at many things, including getting a boyfriend, I am aware that there is so much more to me than that. My real friends believed this too, and this helped me realize that the most important thing I learned was being single anything to overcome.

Through the years, I've seen girls break who they are to shove themselves into the puzzle piece that fits with the boy they want. I've watched girls give up fun evenings because they had to find a date, which forced and complicated an otherwise fun night. But I've also watched girls grow in relationships and become more trusting through the supportive nature of their relationship.

I have never learned how to unlock a boyfriend. But that isn't the point. I've learned the true place that romantic relationships play in any life, which is an accessory. They, by all means, can make you happy and improve your life, but they are not a necessary part of who you are. You are not more or less of a person when you are with someone else. You can be whole on your own. Life isn't about finding prince charming; it's about living your best life, and maybe you'll find someone who wants to be a part of an awesome life you've already begun building.

Thanks for reading,

Your friendly neighborhood single girl

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