As college students, more is expected of us than older generations would like to acknowledge.
We are expected to know exactly what we want to do for the rest of our lives, take the correct courses needed, do exceptionally well in all of these courses, be involved in extracurricular activities, make friends, have a job or internship, and if our heads weren’t spinning enough, we have to stay fit and make sure we are eating the right things!
Because we are completely stressed out with schoolwork, going to the gym can be the last thing on our mind, never mind cooking a healthy meal for ourselves.
Cooking also includes taking time out of your already beyond hectic schedule and grocery shopping for the right foods. It also doesn’t help that the healthier food options like fresh fruits and vegetables, gluten-free and organic items are usually the more expensive items at the store.
It seems like a hassle to be healthy while working towards a degree, but I think we really need to put more emphasis on it.
Sometimes I feel so overwhelmed with schoolwork that I start saying to myself, “How can I possibly make it to the gym today?” But recently, I started to change my thinking.
If our bodies aren’t healthy and we aren’t fueling them with the right foods, how are we going to have the energy to continue on with everything else we need to do in the day?
I found that finding workouts that you actually like doing is the key. If you hate the workout you’re doing, you’ll always come up with any excuse in the book to not actually go and do that workout. I tried a cycling class for the first time last fall, and I was nervous that it was going to be too advanced for me. I went to a class and I fell in love with it.
Now, every semester I try to find out which class will fit my schedule. This semester I go every Wednesday.
It has become a time not only for me to really push myself, but to also forget about the pressing work I have to do. If I can’t make it to the gym any other day that week, I know I will make time for cycling. I put it in my schedule as if it was an actual class I was taking to make sure I get myself there every week.
Being healthy does not mean being skinny; it’s about feeling good in general.
This could result in getting sick less often, a stronger body and a healthier state of mind. Stress, anxiety and depression are extremely prevalent in college students. It is a time where everything is changing and life seems as though it is moving 1,000 miles per hour.
We are also trying to figure out ourselves and what we want to do with the rest of our lives. While all of this is going on, it is really important to take a minute for yourself, whether it’s just reading a book you enjoy, going for a walk, having a coffee with a friend or visiting family.
It’s important to take a step back and give yourself a chance to breathe. We work really hard and it can be a lot on our bodies and minds.
Above all, I personally think college students need to take the time to focus more on their physical and mental health.
Making this a priority and putting it into our daily routine is a positive step towards making it a lifestyle.
We may feel like we are drowning, but we always need to remember to focus on keeping our bodies strong, healthy, relaxed and ready to take on the day.
Breanna Connell is a fourth-year student. She can be reached at BC810217@wcupa.edu.