With less than three weeks until finals are over, you’re probably looking forward to driving to your childhood home, tossing your bags in your room and settling down for a home-cooked meal. You can already smell the aroma of freshly baked chocolate chip cookies, and you forget about everything else such as finals, projects and grades.
It’s easy to fall into temptations of indulging foods and excessive relaxation over winter break. However, most college students want to find ways to stay healthy when they go home for break.
Steve Wirick, assistant professor of exercise science, said, “To eat healthy over break (and any time, for that matter), fill half your plate with vegetables at every meal. The fiber in vegetables will make you feel fuller longer, plus they are packed with the necessary vitamins and minerals we need in whole food form where they are absorbed by our system properly.”
Balancing a healthy diet, getting good sleep, staying hydrated and working out are all components of being healthy.
Taylore Baker, senior nursing major said, “It all starts with your diet. If you don’t eat healthy, it’s almost pointless to work out.”
But what happens when you want to feast and enjoy a good Thanksgiving meal?
“I’ll give myself two days to break away from eating healthy,” Baker said. “Thanksgiving morning I will run a 5k and that will allow me to eat a lot during Thanksgiving.”
While it is not necessary to run a 5k race on Thanksgiving morning, a jog to boost your metabolism before eating a large meal can help you stay fresh and enjoy a meal without feeling guilty from consuming too much.
If exercise equipment is not available, what should you do? College students that are concerned about the cost of joining a gym or have no transportation can simply do it at home.
“Performing body weight exercises like squats, lunges, push-ups, and core strengthening moves can be a very inexpensive way to work out over break,” Wirick said. “There are many apps that can be utilized for in-home fitness training.”
Remember, it’s called a break for a reason, so have a break in the right way and find ways to be healthy that involve having fun.
“Don’t do the all or nothing diet,” said Joyce Byler, wellness director. “Have a snow ball fight, go sled riding, do something active outside. Make plans with your friends by finding ways that are active, such as going on a walk rather than sitting down and having a latte.”
As finals week draws near, remember that winter break is around the corner. Don’t forget the hard work you’ve already put into the semester staying fit and eating healthy. Take some of these easy tips home with you, and most importantly, enjoy your break.
Tyler Newhart is a contributing writer for The Aviso AVW.