What Does It Take For A College Student To Stay Healthy?

What Does It Take For A College Student To Stay Healthy?

Are you concerned about gaining the Freshman 15 and becoming an adult?

There you are, transitioning from having to show up to gym class in grades K-12 and now you are in college and all you take are regular classes. Gym classes aren’t a requirement anymore, so you feel relieved. Why did most students not appreciate gym when they had to take it? Usually, the answer was because they were lazy and it was not necessary. They were and are wrong.

What incoming freshman should know about health: physical activity needs to be ingrained in your brain ALWAYS AS REQUIRED.

You need to take it upon yourself to use your free school gym, or sign up to an affordable gym and GO, or else you really WILL gain the “Freshman 15.” It may be an ongoing joke, but it is taken from something that must seriously be noted. You need to learn how to take care of yourself now, without an adult breathing down your neck.

Finally, in college, you have freedom. Some of you have money your parents still give you because you are their baby, or you already have a part-time job you can support yourself with. Regardless, you use that money towards needs during a long day, such as meals. You would be surprised how many people actually DO eat healthy, but it comes at a price. You are looking at a $7 salad when you are only given $10 for the day.

Junk food may seem appealing when you look at your budget. So now, not only are you in college and must learn to take care of your body physically, but you need to somehow become financially independent. Maybe you can only be a part-time student because you need a full-time job to support your healthy eating habits, as well as your living situation, if you don’t have the funds.

Growing up is hard, especially if you feel like there was no real transition time between your senior year in high school and freshman year of college. Maybe like some people, you are lucky and your family pays for everything and supports you. I am not rich, but I was supported during that transition. I couldn’t afford to dorm but I was able to buy my meals. Also, I worked a little so I saved that money. Honestly though, bringing healthy food from home is the best option, so that your hunger doesn’t tempt you to buy unhealthy food.

Not only do you need to take care of your body physically and yourself financially, but you need to take care of your mental health and well-being. Believe it or not, sleep deprivation, even for a short period of time can break your nervous system. If your nervous system breaks, anxiety and depression, as well as other mental illnesses, will be developed. So make sure you have 7-8 hours of sleep each night (or the basic amount you need to function normally, which differs for each individual).

If a student works and goes to school, maybe 7-8 hours of sleep is impossible, but try and compensate for it by taking study breaks and short naps when you can. I personally worked and went to school last year, but it only made me procrastinate less and plan out study time. It actually helped me use my time wisely. Sometimes, I felt that sleep was more important than anything so I would just go to sleep and set up a time in the morning or in breaks to finish my assignments.

Mental and physical health are at the top of the list of what a college student needs to have. Achieving great grades is important as well, so make time to study and try to learn the material on your own. Your professors will not help you and guide you as much as your former teachers did. In my experience, even if the teacher was nice, the tutoring sessions still didn’t help me do my best on the test. The review sheet did not help me do well on the tests either. So, you get lucky with the professors and you are good. If not, you have learned what you need to do and there is always next semester! Health is a complicated topic, but if you learn to tackle it step by step, you'll be alright. It is a part of growing up, and remember, we are all in the same boat!

Cover Image Credit: Tirachard Kumtanom / Pexels

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36 Thoughts I Had Prepping For A Bikini Competition

Many of these thoughts happened in one day... Multiple times a day.

I am competing in my first fitness competition soon, and let me tell you, it has not been easy. These athletes are no joke. From cutting down calories to controlling cravings to insane workout regimens, these past 8 weeks have not been easy. I am nowhere that I wanted to be at, figure wise, but, this just motivates me for the future. Enjoy some of my daily thoughts during this prep period.

1. I got this.

2. That suit costs how much?!

3. Wow, I really want a burger

4. I want chocolate.

5. I want a donut.

6. I NEED coffee!

7. I don't think I can eat healthy for 8 weeks

8. You're supposed to spray tan nude?

9. How many days out am I?

10. Do I have to do cardio today?

11. I need a nap.

12. How TF do I pose?

13. How is my body supposed to bend that way when I pose?

14. Wow, she has a really nice butt.

15. She's my competition?!

16. I can only have 1200 calories today, that means I have 200 left and it's... 2 p.m.

17. I'm going to be so cranky near the end of this.

18. How dark am I going to be when I get a spray tan?

19. Wow... that's dark.

20. I need to cut down on carbs.

21. Literally, everything I eat has carbs.

22. I love carbs.

23. I wonder what my boyfriend will think when I compete.

24. I wonder what my parents will think...

25. Am I crazy for doing this?

26. Don't answer that.

27. My butt is going to be exposed to so many people.

28. What is a macro?

29. Is there an app for tracking that?

30. Woah, there actually is.

31. Am I done with this yet?

32. I already know what I'm going to eat after the show.

33. Is it show day yet?

34. Can I eat yet?

35. I'm never doing this again.

36. I really want to do this again.

Cover Image Credit: 123rf

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You Should Be Sensitive To Your Need For Depth

How often do I give my lungs the air they’re fit to be filled with?

Shallow breaths.

The deeper I breathe, the more aware I become of the shallowness of my ordinary breath.

I am constantly running on too little oxygen. I have made myself into an anxiety-ridden machine, always shuffling from thing to thing, always moving from thought to thought, worry to worry, meal to meal, assignment to assignment. My cells tremble with the need for a profound inhale.

The deeper I breathe, the more aware I become of my need for the depths.

How often do I give my lungs the air they’re fit to be filled with?

It takes the deep ones, the eight-second inhales, to break apart the knot in your chest. It takes a longer moment to slog through the mess of what’s inside. It takes a step into vulnerability to stop the dehumanizing the world would like to do of you.

I am convicted of a great brokenness that the whole of humanity feels somewhere deep inside of themselves. Being alive is terrifying. There is so much we don’t understand. The confusion and fear crawls out with fangs, in the dead of night, in the chaos we’re caught in during the hectic moments— the times where existence doesn’t make any sense and why are we here and why am I doing this?

I think we have to be honest with ourselves that all of us get scared of being alive sometimes. Existence is scary. There’s so much we don’t know. I love Christ deeply, but I hope people know that even with the hope and assurance I have in faith, I get scared too. Life is not a thing to be made sense of, even with what we do know.

In these moments I pray, I breathe. Breath is such a beautiful thing. How miraculous is it that your lungs were made in a way that can calm your entire being in seconds, flat? How miraculous is it that every time you are steeping in your fear and failure, you get out eventually?

You’re here.

You are resilient. You can breathe. You can take breaths that sustain and regenerate you.

It is about going beneath the surface-level of yourself. It is truly a disservice to yourself to skate upon the periphery of who you are and what you’re going through.

Take a deeper breath today. Fall deep into your humanity today. Acknowledge that existence is scary, and let that fear and confusion take you to a place of deeper questioning and emotion and spirituality.

We, as part of creation, come from the deep. In Hebrew, from Genesis, that’s tĕhowm, the deep, the abyss, the waters. Returning to the deep, to the depths of who you are as a human, requires knowing who you are and where you come from. That seems daunting.

I take a deep breath and breathe in the knowledge that existence is far more than the eye can see.

And then I go in pursuit of answers, knowing full well they will never be completely answered in this lifetime.

Cover Image Credit: pexels.com

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