Many freshman are terrified of the one thing they were told that they would be guaranteed to gain… the freshman 15. Preventing the horrifying trend that is freshman 15 is easier said than done. Late nights studying, partying and Netflix binging all can lead to some very unhealthy habits, triggering inevitable weight gain. It’s many peoples desire to stay fit throughout their university days. However, googling ‘life hacks to getting in shape’, isn’t exactly the route you want to take when you’re serious about changing your lifestyle to a healthy one. The real ‘trick’ on how to get in shape at University is that there are no tricks or life hacks. A healthy diet, daily exercise, time management and determination are the four ‘tricks’ to getting fit in university.
1. Eating the right foods
Though it can be considered a difficult task to begin with, maintaining a healthy diet as a university student can seem even more far fetched. There are many opportunities to satisfy your junk food cravings; whether it be after a long night out on the town, to the food being served in your cafeteria, there always seems to be more of a favourable time to indulge in your favourite snack food.
Maintaining a healthy diet is not as hard as it seems, it just takes a little more effort. Try to avoid all the fast, greasy, salt and sugar filled food. Though this may seem like the only on-the-go option, its not. Meal prepping can save lots of money in time, if you prep your meals for the week, packing your food for the day the night before. When it comes to your schools cafeteria, go for the healthy alternative. Every school has food options in order to lead a healthy lifestyle, its just about searching for those options, and ultimately selecting them. There are many resources on how to get in shape, apps such as ‘My Fitness Pal’ allow you to track your macros throughout the day. Counting the percentage of proteins, carbohydrates and fats you should be consuming on a daily basis in order to reach your fitness goals. Diet plays an important role, whether you want to build muscle or just get toned. What you eat is (if not equal to) more important than the time you are putting in at the gym. Thirty percent gym, seventy percent diet; ab’s are made in the kitchen, not the gym.
2. Hit the gym
Now, you don’t have to be going to the gym for multiple hours a day. However, in order to build muscle and burn calories, the average adult should take part in 30 to 60 minutes of exercise AT LEAST three times a week. This activity can be completed easily weekly. Walk to your desired located versus driving, join an intramural sports team, take a fitness class at your schools athletic centre. If you’re wondering how to get in shape, it is important to maintain an active lifestyle, as not only does it boost your metabolism, but also can help reduce your chance of developing several diseases such as: diabetes, high blood pressure and heart disease.
Engaging in regular exercise helps you keep/get fit, but it will also improve your overall quality of life. When starting your fitness journey, it is important to not place too much importance on that scale. Muscle weighs more than fat, and when you are trying to get fit, the main goal is to replace the fat with muscle. Not only will this boost your resting metabolism rate, but will also transform your body into a working machine.
3. Time is not an excuse
Many people love to use the classic excuse of “I just don’t have the time”. If you’re wondering how to get in shape, you will always have time for the things you want to have time for. If there is want/desire put into something, time will be dedicated to it. If unhealthy eating is the your weak point, meal prep. If you don’t feel you have time to exercise, find a time during the day to complete some form of exercise; even if that means waking up earlier in the day. In order to get/stay fit, the time must be put towards it. Find a way to get it done.
4. Be patient and don’t loose that motivation
Starting any fitness journey at any time in life if difficult. No matter what your end goals are, it is always important to keep them in mind. Motivation comes and goes, but even when there is no motivation left, you have to keep working. Be determined to meet your goals.
These goals don’t have to be large end goals, set small daily or weekly goals for yourself. These goals can consist of anything like: walking to work 3 times in a week, each 5 serving of fruits and vegetables in a day, drink eight glasses of water every day for a week. Try little things in order to keep yourself motivated. Put your fitness goals as your lock screen on your phone, make a check list of healthy habits you must complete in a day. No matter what, always keep moving towards your desired results. Everyday is a new day, taking small steps forwards each day is better than standing still.