College places a lot of pressure on students, from the transition to the work load and the fear of not graduating on time. Most young women begin to experience a slower metabolism by their senior year, while men start to gain weight after graduation. These physical changes cause these young adults to have difficulty in staying in shape.
Many college students gain around 10-15 pounds by the time they graduate. Some, unfortunately, gain more than that. Only a few of them are lucky enough to stay in shape throughout their college life, while there are some who lost weight due to stress. The challenge is to learn how to incorporate a healthy lifestyle into an extremely demanding schedule.
The pressure to look great despite the stress causes students to try out weight loss “short cuts.” These include diet pills, slimming teas, and worse, drugs. Luckily, this article has all the tips you need to stay healthy throughout your college life and beyond. These recommendations are achievable, even when you are busy, so read on and get to learn about how you can stay fit in college.
Eat Healthy Snacks in Between Meals
Snacks are okay, as long as they are healthy. It is important to have a healthy snack on hand that you can eat every three to four hours. This will help you avoid bingeing. Make sure that the serving size of your snack is just enough to keep you feeling full until the next important meal.
Eating meals every three to four hours of the same serving size will just make you gain more weight. Eating at the right time and amount will boost your metabolism. This causes your basal metabolic rate, which is the number of calories that you burn at rest, to increase.
Keep Healthy Snacks in Your Dorm
Stock up on healthy snacks like fruits and vegetables, trail mixes, and granola bars. This will reduce your likelihood of consuming unhealthy foods. With all the right food in your apartment or dorm, you can even bring a few snacks to eat in class to keep you satiated. Make sure to avoid fast foods, campus convenience stores (unless the choices are healthy), and vending machine. In return, you will save more money.
Always Eat Breakfast
Studies show that eating breakfast will keep you from overeating during the day. Loading up in the morning will leave you more satisfied and filled than doing it later in the day. Weight gain is more common among people who skip breakfast because they are more likely to feel famished later and succumb to overeating. In addition, eating a hearty breakfast will boost your brain activity and allow you to perform better in school. You will have some blood sugar boost needed for memory enhancement.
Ditch the Alcoholic Drinks
A serving of beer can contain about 150 calories or more. When you drink five more servings, then you can easily consume 1,000 empty calories. Many alchohol drinkers tend to munch on unhealthy snacks as they drink, which is the perfect combination for weight gain.
You also have to consider the impact of overdrinking as it can leave you skipping a gym session the following day. Many students will not give up their social lives that usually come with a night of drinking. If you want to cut on calories but cannot skip some social drinking sessions, then planning ahead would be crucial to avoid packing up the pounds.
Stay in Shape with Friends
Not all people are capable of keeping themselves motivated to stay in shape, even without support from friends and family. If you are the type of person who easily feels discouraged, then you will want to grab a buddy to workout with you. This will increase your chances of sticking to your fitness program. It would also pay to ask your family to support you through your fitness and college journey. You can choose to celebrate your progress once in a while to make you feel more motivated.
Drink More Water
Water contains zero calories. You drink as much water as you can without feeling guilty. Your body needs to stay hydrated to keep it functioning well. It is important to drink enough water daily to ensure your metabolism stays efficient. The best way to stay hydrated during the day is to bring a bottle of water to school. Drinking water also makes you feel fuller and prevent you from overeating. You get to have better skin, too, as a bonus.
Join Sports Clubs
You can joint sports clubs to stay in shape and get to train with your schoolmates. Many of these clubs are not demanding, so you can choose to participate in their practices without competing. They normally just ask for a one-time club fee. This is just like paying for a gym membership, but you get to workout in the campus with a coach.
Manage Stress Well
Stress is normal in college. However, an increase in your stress level will cause you to do unhealthy things, like binge eating. It will also leave you feeling sluggish and irritable throughout the day. Your body releases a type of hormone that increases your feeling of hunger because it keeps on demanding for energy.
The tendency is to lead you to consuming brain-pleasing foods like chocolates and other sugar-rich foods. This will lead to more stored body fat and weight gain. One of the best ways to manage stress is to workout regularly to encourage your body to release the happy hormones called endorphins.
Get Some Beauty Rest
You are more likely to binge eat when you are tired. Sleep deprivation also disrupts your metabolism, making you gain more weight in the process. Your hormones play a role when you lack or have enough sleep. A hormonal imbalnce happens when you are tired and sleepless, causing you to eat more. Make sure to get at least eight hours of sleep. If your schedule is extremely demanding, aim to get at least six to seven hours.