Second of classes today - well technically first because my Mondays are free. To kick off my senior year (woo!), I wanted to do a little rundown of how to eat healthy while you're away at college. I was a victim of the dreaded Freshman 15...which I thought I was going to avoid because I exercised almost every single day! Now I know nutrition plays a big factor in keeping your weight healthy - no matter how much you try to run it off. But back then, I ate freely and whatever my heart (more like stomach) desired. Some here are some tips to help you get back into shape or stay in shape through healthy eating!
1) Fill up on fresh greens and vegetables first! I know I know...the temptations of the all you can eat dining hall food. I remember eating pizza, burgers, burritos, those darn sweet potato fries, brownies, ice cream, etc for lunch/dinner. I ate until I was full, and then I would have that guilty feeling in my stomach...sooo I would haul my ass over to the gym to get on the elliptical or treadmill for 1 hour. Then I'd tell myself "never again," but end up doing the whole cycle over again. Eat. Feel guilty and fat. Cardio. But now, the first thing I do when I get to the dining hall is grab 2 plates of salad and veggies. One plate full of colorful veggies and one plate full of greens and salad toppings (no creamy dressing/croutons please!). And then if I feel like I need to eat more, I grab one serving of something I'm craving with more vegetables on the side. I felt that the more and more I ate vegetables, the more I craved them. And no more feeling guilty!
2) Stock up on fruit and veggies in your dorm or apartment. If you live in a dorm, go out and buy fruits such as bananas, apples, peaches, oranges, clementines, etc - something that doesn't necessarily have to be refrigerated and easy to eat! For the veggies, you can go for cucumbers, carrot sticks, those sweet peppers that are so darn good (I get mine from Costco), tomatoes, etc. I feel that having these options in your room or kitchen encourages you to eat healthier because you don't want these things to go bad or you just see them sitting there staring back at you! If you have a fridge and kitchen, you have so many more options because you can go out and buy any kind of fresh produce!
3) Going out with friends. This is probably one of the toughest because of peer pressure or your junk food cravings kick in as you read the menu full of fried, greasy foods. And if you're 21, you have the urge to buy a drink for yourself while eating dinner or while just grabbing quick and dirty bar food. My biggest advice when you're eating out with friends is that you don't HAVE to eat everything on your plate! I like to eat some healthy snacks before I go out to eat - especially if I'm not sure whether or not the restaurant is going to have healthy options. Enjoy your time out with friends, eat slow and talk with them. You'll be full before you know it and when you look down at your plate, you'll see food left over. If you're still hungry, have a couple of more bites. If not, get it boxed and have it for lunch the next day!
4) Pass up the soda, sugary juices and energy drinks. Do I really need to elaborate on this?
5) Carry around nuts, hand fruit, handcut veggies. These will help you with those in-between-classes cravings so that you don't get to lunch or dinner with such a ravenous appetite.
6) Carry around a water bottle and re-fill it often!
These are some of my tips based on my personal experience! I really think these small changes would make a big difference..switching out processed snacks for yummy fruits and veggies. You'll soon learn to enjoy healthy snacks as you begin to feel better about yourself! I will be posting more on some of my favorite workout moves to do if you can't make it to the gym or is short on time!
Halfway through the week already!