By now, everyone is getting the winter break blues. A new semester has started, which can be a challenge for any returning Goucher Gopher. Another challenge that sneaks into the life of a college student is eating healthy. When I started my freshman year at Goucher, my diet was extremely disorganized. However, after traveling through the Middle East over the summer, I have realized the importance of maintaining a healthy diet.
During my time overseas, I decided to become a strict vegan. This diet eliminates all animal byproducts – meat, eggs, dairy, you name it. Of course, you don’t need to be a vegan to be healthy. Putting on that college weight can easily be avoided, as long as you make the right choices. Sometimes these choices are easier said than done, but they’re not impossible.
This column will be packed with easy to make recipes, tips, and valuable information on health. This can range from the newest abdominal workout to easy, fresh snack ideas. To perform at your best in college, a healthy diet is a must.
At Goucher, both Huebeck and Stimson have healthy and unhealthy foods to choose from. Stimson does have a salad bar, but in general, more unhealthy options. On the other hand, Huebeck, usually seen as the “more healthy” dining hall, does serve macaroni and cheese every once in a while. Overall, your body needs food that can be digested properly and not clog the one and only “machine” you have for your entire life. Eating fried chicken or pan pizza bread is not necessarily the best way to fuel this machine in the long run. However, every once in awhile, it’s good to relax and have that piece of pizza. If you aim for a diet full of whole grains, lean meat, fruits, and vegetables, a piece of pizza or a slice of cake definitely won’t hurt you.
Along with a healthy diet, regular exercise will also help with the coming-back-to-school blues. A lot of college students are pressed for time, right? We all know that feeling. Exercising everyday, even by just taking the long way to class, is extremely important. If you can’t get on the treadmill or go on a walk, a jump rope is the perfect substitute. It aids in weight loss, increases your muscle tone, and supports your cardiovascular system. I always take a jump rope with me when I am traveling. I start jump roping in the middle of the airport if I haven’t had my fix of fitness for the day (you think I’m lying, but I’m not). Skipping rope doesn’t skip working out. Try it. Here is an easy exercise to get started:
This workout can burn about 135 calories in ten minutes. It’s called the Figure Eight, and is fantastic for your core abdominals and legs. Stand with feet shoulder-width apart, grasping the jump rope handles together with both hands in front of your body. Trace a sideways figure eight, moving from right shoulder to left hip, then left shoulder to right hip. Shift weight from right to left as you move your arms across your body. Do this for ten minutes, and don’t give up! And when you’re done, don’t forget to give yourself a big pat on the back.