KEEPING FIT AS A STUDENT
Keeping fit and healthy at university can be more of a challenge than the actual degree. But fear not, I bring good news. There is hope. So, let me remind you of a few things to help you get through those 3 or 4 years of heads down, grades up!
Firstly, remember we are all in the same boat.
When I first started university, I had convinced myself other students will be on top form with everything. But we’re human. At the end of your full day, the last thing you want to do is hit the gym. Don’t even get me started on the off-peak memberships. As well-intentioned as they are, they are far from reasonable. No student wants to spend their lunch time at the gym, for two reasons; they’re too being eating or studying. Instead of beating yourself up that you’ve not yourself a snazzy gym membership card, walk to your lecture. Besides, fresh air is so under-rated and you’ll meet more people along the way too.
Secondly, societies are your new best friend.
Most Universities will have societies, some more than others. As a Fresher myself, I worried I wouldn’t be able to keep up my ‘health and fitness regime’, or just that my ‘just about acceptable level of health’ would soon deteriorate, given the student meals we force ourselves to indulge in. But – and this is a big but – you would be surprised how many societies you can join that will keep you active. I won’t say that all Universities have football, running and hockey societies, because they don’t. But there’s always the yoga or dance ones to keep you on your feet. If that’s not your cup of tea, and I believe there are actually ‘tea drinking’ societies, then I’ll let you into a secret; laughing for 15 minutes burns up to 40 calories. So if pushing yourself out of your comfort zone in first year all the way to Bhangra Dancing Society doesn’t entice you, then relax. After all, they do say “a laugh a day keeps the doctor away”. Plus, a website made to help de-stress students recently gave me a link to a funny YouTube video, so laughing must really release those stress emotions.
Thirdly, as a fellow food lovin’ student myself, I understand the stresses of ‘maintaining a healthy balanced diet’ at University.
If they expect us to sit it out in the library for hours on end, they need to realise that students need a sugar rush. So, I wholeheartedly admit that the chocolate chip cookie is a lot more appetizing than the 70p banana from the market. But, as I mentioned the dreaded comfort zones earlier, try it. It might not hit that sweet toothed craving to make you start that dissertation chapter, but I guarantee it will work like magic in another way. It’s a million miles healthier, probably a lot cheaper, and it will keep you going longer.
So don’t stress; I realise telling student not to stress is like telling water not to be wet, but it’s true. Try to get your five a day, find a new (or familiar!) society, and breathe. I promise you’ll be fine, and I’ll see you on the other side… graduation!