How To Balance Student Life with a Healthy Lifestyle
- Ditch the All-Or-Nothing approach
I think there’s a huge misconception that you have to be EITHER a green juice-loving, anti-alcohol, 7am spin class and a full day of lectures kind of person, OR a party animal. The truth of the matter is you can do both, and you’ll probably be your happiest and healthiest you in doing so. It’s only in my final year at University that I have embraced balance: most of the time, I would wake up early, go to the gym and head to Campus for lectures, but some days, I lay in, skip the gym and go out for drinks with my friends, ending the night with an extra cheesy take-out pizza. In taking this balanced approach, I never feel like I’m going off track with my academic or fitness goals, or that I’m doing the opposite and depriving myself of a good time. Once I’ve let my hair down and enjoyed a night out with the girls, I wake up and smash a gym session and have a productive day of deep work the next morning.
- Schedule in your workouts
I consider my training as a commitment to myself. I wouldn’t cancel an important commitment with anyone else, so I don’t do that to myself either. Working out is my “me” time: it brings with it both physical and mental benefits and it improves all aspects of my day from concentration to sleep. By scheduling in your workouts, you make sure they happen!
- Meal prep
Not only is this cheaper than eating out at any available opportunity, it is also much healthier. You have control over what you put into your food. Rather than being full of additives and hard-to-pronounce ingredients, you can pack your meals full with veggies. This also saves time: if you batch-cook a spaghetti Bolognese at the beginning of the week, that’s several dinners ready to go. If you find the idea of prepping whole meals unappealing, you could individually prep the ingredients: you could roast some chicken and shred it up, ready to add to a salad for a quick and easy lunch. There are so many benefits to meal prepping, it’s definitely something to try.
- Get into a good morning/night routine
This doesn’t have to be excessive, even just a few things you do every morning or night, that gives your body cues that it’s time to wake up or go to sleep. I love journaling when I wake up because it gives me space to vent whatever is on my mind before I start the day. Before bed I’ll make a herbal tea and dim the lights in my bedroom to make sure the environment is optimal for sleep.