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How to Stay Healthy at College

College students are constantly sitting. Sitting in class, sitting at meals, sitting around the dorm, sitting in the library, and sitting at bars. The easiest way for college students to avoid the dreaded Freshman Fifteen is to take advantage of the easy opportunities they have to be active.

1) Don’t Sit in a Car

As tempting as that ride to class may sound, the walk will be much more beneficial to your health and to any attempts at weight-loss. Walking to class, between classes, and everywhere else on campus will help burn off that extra bag of chips you had while studying the night before. Most college campuses are designed to make walking easy, so this lifestyle change can be undertaken quite easily. Put your iPod on before you head out, and you may find you even enjoy walking.

2) Don’t Sit at the Bar

Why sit at the bar when there is usually an option to get up and dance? Sure, everyone looks like an idiot doing it, but it’s an easy, and fun way to burn off some extra calories. However, if you are going to sit at the bar, choose the light beer that has fewer calories.

3) Don’t Sit Around the Dorm

The next time you and your friends decide to combat your boredom by popping in a DVD or settling in for a long afternoon of trashy TV, get out some athletic equipment instead. Bring your baseball or softball gloves to school with you and play catch for an hour. Get out that soccer ball that’s been ignored and kick it around for awhile. Find a Frisbee – if you don’t have one, someone in your dorm must – and toss that around for an afternoon. When the weather is bad, find some friends and have a dance party, or pop in an exercise DVD or look up some exercise routines on YouTube. Make exercising fun – the gym isn’t fun, that’s one reason people hate going.

4) Don’t Sit Around Alone

Join an intramural sports team. Depending on your school, it should be fairly easy to find a team that fits your level of ability and enthusiasm. Having a set game, and sometimes practice, schedule, will make it a lot easier to exercise. Knowing that others are depending on you to show up means that you will show up to these games and practices a lot more reliably than you will go to the gym.

5) Don’t Take the Easy Way Out

Most buildings are now equipped with elevators or escalators, but that does not mean you have to use them. Take the stairs. This simple extra step will add muscle to your legs, and increase your overall stamina, especially if you are walking to class and around campus. It may be tempting to just press the button and stand there in the elevator if you have a backpack full of books, but actually using your muscles is the best way to get fit.

Staying fit is one of the best ways to keep up your energy and be able to function through the college years. If you stay active, you will avoid the freshman fifteen without having to constantly count calories or miss out on fun because you’re in the gym. Keeping up an active lifestyle is the best way to stay fit and to keep your body at the healthy weight at which you entered college.