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7 Health Tips for College Students

Stress, a poor diet, and partying are common to many students’ lifestyles. However, they are not conducive to good health. College-bound students leaving home for the first time are faced with making their own decisions about many things that affect their well-being. Here are some health tips to consider.

1. Eat a Balanced Diet

It should come as no surprise that eating right is at the top of the list of healthy behaviors. The adage “you are what you eat” is true. Your physical and mental resiliency depend upon your body receiving adequate nutrition.

Consuming foods with large amounts of sugar, salt, and saturated fats can compromise your immune system and lead to illness. It also can sap the energy you need to meet all your responsibilities. Your body requires nourishment to deal with the stresses of college life. Eating poorly can lead to obesity, sickness, fatigue, anxiety, and other undesirable conditions.

Most colleges and universities do not allow students to cook food in the dorms. However, you can keep your room stocked with snacks like fruit and nuts. This might help curb the temptation to order pizza or get fast food when you feel hungry.

Make good choices in the school’s cafeteria or dining hall. You have heard it a million times: Eat a balanced diet. That includes vegetables, fruits, whole grains, and protein. Make sure you have something from each food group every day. Ideally, the volume of vegetables in your diet should exceed that of meat.

This does not mean you have to survive on tofu and leafy vegetables, though you might be surprised by what you can do with such ingredients. Inevitably, you will eat some pizza, burgers, and fried bar snacks. These foods are linked to opportunities to make friends and socialize, which are important elements of the college experience. Practice moderation when enjoying junk food.

Be creative and find ways to eat your favorite foods in more healthy ways. Order whole-wheat tortillas and pizza crusts when they are available. Include vegetables in your pizza ingredients. Ask for low-fat white, rather than yellow, cheese; and choose chicken instead of beef or pork. Opt for baked, rather than fried, food.

Breakfast is important. You need an energy boost after many hours of not giving your body any fuel. Eat a bowl of healthy cereal or granola, or at least grab some fruit (and perhaps a whole-grain bagel) on the way out the door.

Drink water frequently, even if you are not thirsty. You may find that you feel better and eat less. Take it easy on the caffeine. While a little of this stimulant can be beneficial, consuming too much is counterproductive and potentially dangerous. The same is true of sodas and other beverages containing large amounts of sugar.

Your body needs a variety of nutrients, so don’t eat exactly the same foods every day. If you are trying to lose weight, be mindful of portion sizes but eat plenty of veggies and get enough protein. Never go on a crash diet. The weight you lose will probably return soon, and in the meantime you will have compromised your health.

2. Exercise

There are some other ways to ward off illness, boost energy, and stay in shape. One of the best methods is getting some exercise every day. Walking from your room to classes is not enough. Take longer walks, jog, ride a bicycle, go to a gym, or play a sport.

Between studying and socializing, you may not think you have time to exercise. All it takes is about 20 minutes every day, which is not that hard to fit into your schedule.

3. Get Enough Sleep

Many people do not appreciate the importance of sleep. You need to get at least seven hours of sleep per day. If you don’t, it will be harder to stay alert and focus on your studies.

Sleep deprivation may cause fatigue, headaches, and depression. Your relationships, as well as your grades, could suffer. If you are not getting enough sleep at night, try to take an afternoon nap. Avoid caffeine and sugar for at least a few hours before going to bed.

4. Take Precautions

College classes are in session during the winter, when the most illnesses occur. As a student, you are in close contact with numerous people. It is crucial to protect yourself from viruses and other infectious diseases.

Wash your hands often, especially after touching door knobs and other objects with which many people come in contact. This will keep you from catching most contagions. Get a flu shot, or choose an herbal alternative, to keep yourself from catching a bug. Obtain appropriate vaccinations. Take Vitamin C and antioxidants.

5. Cope with Stress

College life is stressful. Living away from home, dealing with new people, is hard enough. Studying and taking tests create additional anxiety. The college life challenges your mental, as well as physical, health.

Diet, exercise, and sleep are critical to managing stress. Take breaks when you feel overwhelmed. Switch from studying to playing a game or watching a video. Gain some perspective and relax. Spend some time outdoors every day. Find balance by connecting with nature.

Compartmentalize the things that cause you stress. Figure out what you need to do, a step at a time. Set priorities and short-term, attainable goals. Try to transcend the anxiety and look at things logically. Remember that your fellow students are having the same problems. Share your feelings with them, as well as with other friends and family members. Try meditation, yoga, or a hobby. Do not hesitate to speak with a counselor.

6. Avoid Risky Behaviors

Many college-bound students are excited about their new experience for the wrong reasons. They may be looking forward to partying and having sex. They are at an age when experimentation is normal, but it is vital to know how to stay safe.

Parties featuring beer or liquor are common on, or near, most campuses. You are likely to find yourself at such a party. If you are of legal age and choose to drink, know your limit to ensure that you remain aware and in control. Have a designated driver.

Illegal drugs also may be available. The obvious advice is to refrain from taking them. If you do decide to experiment, understand the effects of the drugs and the risks involved. Remember that what you are doing is against the law, and may result in bad decisions and unwanted consequences.

Another part of the college experience is dating. Some students meet their life-long partners in school. It is easier to find people with common interests in college than it was in high school. Students who make the decision to have sex should use protection, get tested regularly for sexually transmitted diseases, and go to doctors for exams and vaccinations.

7. Other Tips

If you smoke tobacco, figure out a way to quit. Your performance in school, as well as your health, may benefit from doing so. Find healthy alternatives to nicotine to provide the stimulation you crave.

Support your feet by wearing good shoes rather than sandals. You are likely to be doing a lot of walking, going to classes and moving around campus. Do not let aching or injured feet slow you down.

Give your back a break by minimizing the weight of your backpack. You don’t have to carry all your books, all the time. Do some stretching before heading out on a long walk or beginning your daily exercise regimen.

Communicate your needs to roommates. Coordinate times for studying and sleeping. Maintaining good relations with your roomies also enhances your mental health.

Resist excessive tanning because of the risk of getting skin cancer. If you do lay out, use sunscreen. Daily applications of aloe vera or other moisturizer help prevent skin from burning or getting too dry.

These tips can help you maintain mental and physical health during your college years. By eating well, getting enough sleep, exercising, and managing stress, you get the most out of the experience. Your relationships and grades will benefit.

5 Tips to Help You Cope with Deadline Stress

Throughout the academic year, students have to put in a lot of hours studying, researching and writing papers and essays. With deadlines always looming in the horizon, it is often natural for students to get stressed and panic. The tips given below will help you plan your time wisely and cope with stress successfully:

1. Plan and prioritize

If you organize and plan well in advance, you will be able to avoid stressful situations. Know what needs to be done, calculate how long each task will take and factor in all non-coursework related tasks that require your attention. Knowing how to set priorities is a part of good organization. Make schedules and timetables that will allow you to keep track of your time effectively.

2. Recognize stress

Recognizing the symptoms of stress will allow you to do something about it quickly. Unless you recognize that there is a problem and acknowledge it, you won’t be able to deal with it. Serious stress can lead to depression and can have many recognizable symptoms like blurred vision, increased irritability, anxiety, poor appetite, tiredness and difficulty in sleeping. If you notice signs of stress, talk to a friend or a family member. Talking about issues is often enough to relieve tension.

3. Sleep

A good night’s sleep has many benefits. Sleep allows the body to rest and recovers itself. Sleeping at least 8 hours each night will allow you to feel refreshed so you can work on your essay or your thesis with renewed energy. Most students stay up all night to cram for exams or to finish their essays as the deadlines gets closer but sleep is one of the best ways to avoid stress during an academic year.

4. Exercise

Another excellent way to prevent stress is exercise. Exercising provides a stimulating effect and when combined with a healthy diet, it ensures that the body and mind are better equipped to deal with stress. With time constraints, students are often tempted to avoid exercise but it can be a mistake. With good organization and planning it is possible to easily balance work with exercise as well as relaxation.

5. Learn to enjoy your work

One of the main reasons why students often get stressed is because they do not dedicate enough time to themselves. Having fun is just as important as turning in papers before the deadline. Studying doesn’t always have to be serious. Students can still be creative to make their time at university interesting and fun. While it can be a lot of fun to read and learn new things, it is equally important to socialize and meet new people. Put in some time each week to make new friends, discover their thoughts and opinions and build relationships since it will ultimately put you at ease.

While these tips will help you cope with stress in most cases, when you feel overwhelmed it is best to seek medical advice. Most universities today offer counseling and support that you can take advantage of.

Why You Need Cardio Workouts

Regular physical activity is one of the keys to staying healthy. Exercise is especially important for college students, who are often under a lot of pressure academically and socially.

To get the most out of exercising, it is necessary to elevate your heart rate and sustain it for at least 20 minutes. Activities that accomplish this goal are considered cardio workouts. They have been proven to relieve stress, as well as anxiety and other symptoms of depression. You might achieve greater confidence and emotional balance.

Cardio also aids efforts to lose weight and become more fit. These are goals shared by many college students, who typically eat a fair amount of junk food and perhaps drink a few beers. Cardio workouts can make you more resilient to illness, disease, and injury. Regular, intense exercise has been shown to reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease and osteoporosis. Another benefit is growing muscles without adding fat. Increased strength and agility have been attributed to cardio. It is an effective way to keep cholesterol and triglyceride levels in check, as well.

The average adult should take part in activities that provide about one-half hour of cardio per day, according to U.S. government health officials. You may choose from among numerous types of workouts.

In Your Room
The weather could make exercising outdoors difficult, and perhaps you would rather avoid the cost or social dynamics of a gym. Fortunately, there are cardio exercises you can try in the privacy of your dorm room.

Some workouts do not even require any equipment. They include running in place, jumping jacks, core-power yoga, belly dancing, aerobics, and climbing stairs. Other exercises recommended by fitness trainers and others are squat jumps, leaping into the air from a crouched position; burpees, jumping from a squat to a plank position, then jumping back and standing; “mountain climbing,” working the knees forward and back while in a push-up position; bear crawls, moving from a squat to pushup position, then walking the hands back and standing; and kickboxing, punching and kicking a bag, other object, or the air.

Many types of home-exercise equipment are on the market. You have probably seen the late-night Bowflex commercials on television. Treadmills and stationary bicycles are among the most popular kinds of equipment. Others include elliptical trainers, weight machines, resistance bands, and free weights. Some manufacturers give the impression that their devices can magically transform your body. Understand that you will see results only if you are willing to commit the necessary time and effort.

In the Great Outdoors
Exercising outside provides the added benefit of fresh air and sunshine. Running is one of the most common cardio techniques. Maintaining adequate speed for long enough distances can produce the elevated heart rate you need. However, running can be hard on your feet and legs. Alternatives that place less strain on the body are jogging, power walking, and hiking. You might want to combine periods of walking and running during an outing.

Other outdoor workouts include bicycling, golf, tennis, and playing in the yard with the dog or the kids. However, it could be difficult to achieve enough exertion for such activities to qualify as cardio. If it snows frequently where you are going to school, consider buying or renting cross-country skis, snowshoes, or boots. Just hiking through heavy snow is an intense form of exercise. Shoveling snow is also sure to get the blood pumping.

At a Gym
You might be unable or unwilling to spend money on expensive home-exercise equipment. Elliptical trainers, rowing machines, and other devices are also available at gyms and fitness centers. Because these facilities offer a variety of equipment, you can try various models to see which ones are right for you.

Many students who go to gyms find that they benefit from the advice they receive from fitness experts, other customers, and fellow students. Gyms are social environments, where people have at least a few things in common. They are all trying to improve their health and get into better shape.

You may be able to find a gym, spa, or fitness center that has a running track, tennis court, basketball court, or swimming pool. Some businesses require annual membership fees, while others let you pay on a per-visit basis. Take advantage of recreational facilities on campus, especially if you are at a large university where multiple options are available.

Before deciding which kind of cardio workout to try, have a good understanding of your physical capabilities. Consider not only your fitness goals, but also your age, health issues, strength, and mobility. Your gender may be another factor. For instance, authorities say aerobics, jogging, running, and using a treadmill are particularly valuable for women.

It is recommended that you tell a doctor or other medical provider about your workout plans. Get a checkup and some professional advice. You want to make sure that your exercises do not cause pain or injury. Warm up and stretch before starting, and initially do short workouts. You can make them longer and more energetic as your strength and endurance build. Don’t overdo it, or you may find yourself in worse shape than before. It’s a good idea to vary workouts, to benefit different muscles and prevent excessive strain on any of them.

Determine your optimal heart rate during cardio. Subtract your age from 220. Seventy percent of the resulting figure is the number of heart beats per minute you should strive to attain. This is the rate at which calories and fat are believed to burn most effectively.

Deciding upon the best kind of cardio workouts for you is the first step. The hard part is devoting yourself to regular exercise. You will not experience the results you seek without putting in the work. If you make the effort, better health and a fitter body may be among the rewards. You also might feel less stressed, more confident, and even happier.

Stress Zone: 8 Tips on How to Master the Demon

In many areas of life, stress is inevitable. For college students this can be a major problem since many of them are not prepared for what they will face. College is a whole new ball game, with a much heavier workload and additional responsibilities. Many college students have to find jobs on or off campus. Going to work, attending classes regularly and turning assignments in on time can prove to be too much for some people.

Even college students who are not working can be overwhelmed by their studies. Scholarship students especially have a lot of pressure placed on them to maintain good grades. The harder some students work, the higher their stress level gets. At some point, stress can become a health risk, and it can even lead some people to contemplate suicide. The following tips can help college students beat stress:

Learn to go easy on yourself

This might seem simple, but it is an important way to avoid stress buildup. Missed deadlines can happen to anyone, so do not panic, and try not to be angry with yourself. Instead, learn from it and try to do better in the future. Failing an exam or getting a low grade is also no reason to beat up on yourself. When you do not perform as well as you wish, take it in stride and try to do better next time.

Get enough sleep

Not getting enough sleep is something that many college students can relate to as they work to achieve their goal. Adequate rest is essential for good health, especially mental health. Lack of sleep can affect our moods, making us irritable and prevent us from dealing with problems in the right way. People who get enough sleep are able to concentrate better in class and they are generally more relaxed.

Have a good diet

Many college students eat a lot of junk food because it is cheaper or sometimes more convenient. The brain needs the right amount of nutrients to function properly. Try to have fruits and vegetables every day, and take a multivitamin if necessary. Eating whole grain foods is also a good idea for the college student. A body that is properly fed is better at dealing with stressful situations.

Socialize

Hanging out with friends is a great way to deal with the pressure of being in college. Sometimes it is good to have fun and to not think about the things that are bothering you. Even studying together as a group can be a fun activity and helps to make the workload easier. You can also look for clubs on campus that will allow you to spend time with other people in a setting that has nothing to do with the classroom.

Talk to someone

If you feel like you are under too much stress, it helps if you share this with someone. This person can be a lecturer, a faculty advisor or even a close friend. Sometimes it is good to get problems off your chest by talking. Communicating with others can help you to feel better, resulting in you feeling less stressed.

Look at your workload

It is possible that you are taking more courses than you can handle. This is an easy way to fall into the stress trap. It is s good idea to look at the courses you are taking and dropping one or two to make your coursework more manageable. It may even be necessary to sit out a semester to give yourself time to recuperate and get back on track. The important thing is to ensure that doing this will not put your credits below the number that you need to graduate.

Spend some time alone

While being with friends can be good, sometimes distance from other people is just as beneficial. It is a good idea to be alone for a while just to relax or to think about the problems that make you feel stressed. You might even come up your own ideas to help you manage your stress.

Exercise

Studies have shown that exercise promotes good mental health. Vigorous exercise improves blood flow, and can help to improve your mood. Some people actually go to the gym to relieve stress. At many colleges, gym membership is free or very reasonably priced for students.

Some people meditate to help to clear their minds and leave their stress behind. Others start to take music lessons or a new sport. Whichever method is chosen, the goal is always the same; mastering the demon called stress. If you fail to control this problem, it could cause you to fail in college and prevent you from reaching your goals.

A College Freshman Guide to Being Healthy

College life is a lot of fun, but for first year students a lot can happen. The change in environment and eating habits often results in ill-health for many college students. Being away from home for the first time, many students do not do a good job at first of taking responsibility for themselves.

Preparing for College

Before leaving home there are some things that you should do to help you cope with the first couple months of college life. Some of these will help you remain healthy and allow you to manage your new routine. Some of these are:

  • Going to your family doctor for a check up
  • If you have a health condition, get all the facts about your condition and treatment. You will need this information to share with the doctor or clinic at your college and if possible, get a referral to a doctor at your new location.
  • Make sure you get all your vaccines before going off to college. This will help to protect you from many avoidable conditions

Keeping Healthy While at College

Many freshmen either lose or gain a lot of weight. Gaining weight is especially easy as many of them start eating junk food. Not many freshmen want to bother with cooking or making an effort to eat nutritious foods. However, eating properly while at college is not very difficult. Ensuring that you eat properly just takes a little planning, which may involve doing the following:

  • Start your day with a good breakfast. Try not to go hungry during the day and make an effort to have at least three meals per day. Allowing yourself to go hungry normally results in overeating
  • Avoid buying and keeping junk food and unhealthy snacks around. If you have to buy junk food, avoid eating it late at night. For late night study sessions, fruits and vegetables are better choices for snacking.
  • Learn about portion sizes as this will minimize overeating.
  • Drink lots of water as keeping hydrated helps with concentration and will also help prevent overeating
  • Do not eat to relieve stress
  • Many young people at college drink, however, do this only occasionally if you decide to drink. You should definitely avoid drinking as a regular part of your everyday activities.
  • Take supplements if you are unable to eat properly

Other tips for remaining healthy while at college include:

  • Getting adequate sleep is a priority for everyone especially college students. This will help you perform better in class, and will also help keep your immune system working properly. Napping during the day if you have time is a great way to get more rest. You should aim for a minimum of six hours sleep each night.
  • Exercising and keeping fit should also be a part of your healthcare plan. Many colleges have gyms and it is a good idea to become a member. You can also do other things to stay physically active, including walking to classes and the library as much as possible.
  • Find ways to remain stress free. This can involve joining a social club or group and learning how to handle the pressure of exams.

It is also important to know where the medical center, hospital or other healthcare facilities are located. Also, tell your roommate or someone else in your dorm that you are close to if you have a chronic health condition. In dorms where many students share a bathroom, you should wear flip-flops in the shower. This way, you will avoid fungal infections like athlete’s foot.

Following these basic tips will help you avoid the Freshman 15 (gaining weight) and enjoy your first year of college. Once you develop these habits of healthy living on campus, your remaining years there should be less stressful. You will find that after a few months, it will become easy to maintain good habits in terms of eating, sleeping and keeping active.

Stress Management Tips for College Students

College life can cause a lot of anxiety. Students are living away from home, perhaps for the first time, which entails new responsibilities and challenges. Personal relationships and studying for exams also cause stress.

Experiencing some anxiety in college is normal. After all, you are dealing with an entirely new environment. It is important to keep stress from mounting by practicing positive thinking and healthy habits. Here are seven stress-management tips for college students.

1. Monitor Yourself

Be alert to changes in how you feel and act, as they may indicate unhealthy stress levels. You may find yourself becoming excessively angry or irritated about relatively insignificant things.

Muscle tightness, headaches, and an upset stomach are possible signs of anxiety. Other indications include fatigue, and a sense of being bored all the time. If anxiety or panic attacks keep you up at night, you know you are stressed.

2. Think Positively

Perception is everything. How you process information determines how you feel. If you constantly tell yourself that you are going to fail, expect to fail. Relax, take deep breaths, and visualize positive outcomes. Focus on your strengths and abilities, rather than perceived shortcomings. Simplify problems by logically determining what you need to do, step by step.

You may want to take part in some sort of religious or spiritual practice. Perhaps you have religious beliefs that can provide support and guidance. Some students are helped by meditation or yoga. Find some way to achieve the proper frame of mind that will allow you to be confident and emotionally strong.

3. Eat Healthy Food

In college, your mother is not around to buy, cook, and serve nutritious meals. It is suddenly your responsibility to do the shopping and meal planning. To stay healthy emotionally, as well as physically, a balanced diet is crucial.

Make sure that, every day, you eat vegetables, fruits, whole grains, and protein. Try to consume more veggies than meat, choose baked rather than fried food, and opt for chicken instead of pork.

Control your consumption of sugar, salt, and saturated fats. Eating hamburgers, pizzas, and deep-fried snacks is to be expected in college. These foods are common in dorm rooms, at parties, and in bars. Just practice some restraint. Limit how much bad stuff you eat at a time, and don’t do it every day. Have at least one meal a day that contains the basic healthy food groups.

If you try to survive on food that does not provide the nutrition your body needs, it will catch up with you. Fatigue, muscle aches, a lack of energy, anxiety, depression, and illness may result.

Eating right in college can be a challenge because cooking in dorms is usually not allowed. Make sure you have healthy snacks, like nuts and fruit, in your room. When you go to the cafeteria, or eat out at a restaurant, order vegetables and whole grains along with the meat and cheese. Even pizzas can be fairly healthy, when they have whole-grain crusts and veggie toppings.

Do not neglect breakfast. Your body requires some fuel to start another busy day. You may feel that you don’t have time for a full, balanced meal in the morning. But it takes only a few minutes to eat a bowl of whole-grain cereal or granola, with fruit.

Drink water throughout the day, while limiting your intake of caffeine. Too much coffee or soda, and not enough water, can cause physical and emotional symptoms.

4. Get Some Exercise

If you are not accustomed to exercising, you might be surprised by how much better it makes a person feel. A brisk walk or jog, tennis match, bicycle ride, gym workout, or other physical activity is good for mind and body.

You will feel your energy, strength, and perhaps even confidence rise. Exercise maintains a healthy weight and tones muscles, while relieving stress and anxiety. It is one of the best things you can do to tune your body and clear your mind. All it takes is about 20 minutes a day. Include exercise as a part of your schedule.

5. Get Adequate Sleep

A lack of sleep, over time, leads to all sorts of problems. Anxiety can cause, or result from, insomnia. Most people require at least seven hours of sleep a night.

Sleep deprivation may result in fatigue, headaches, and depression. This makes it harder for college studies to study, perform well on tests, and foster relationships. If socializing or other activities prevent you from getting to bed early enough, schedule naps in the afternoons. Don’t consume caffeine or sugar before going to bed.

6. Take Breaks

The hectic pace of college life can leave you feeling anxious or stressed. Give yourself a break every day by finding a quiet place to be relaxed and alone. Go outside to appreciate nature and gain perspective on things that may be troubling you. Get away from academic pressures by socializing with friends and joining student clubs. Take part in sports and other recreational activities.

7. Reach Out to Others

You don’t have to face everything on your own. Other students are going through the same things you are, so share your feelings with your friends and roommates. You might be able to help one another find solutions, or at least have the satisfaction of knowing that you are not the only one experiencing difficulties.

Take advantage of other resources, like older students and your resident assistant. Have conversations with your parents and other adults whose advice you trust. Do not hesitate to visit with college counselors. That’s why they are there.

College is one of the most important times in your life. You have new experiences, make friends, learn new things, and grow into adulthood. All this can be a bit overwhelming, resulting in anxiety. You can control and manage the stress by following these tips.

Staying fit

Living on a student budget is no reason to forego your health and fitness level. Finding free fitness options can actually be a great way to create lifelong healthy habits, make new friends and relieve the regular stress associated with college life.

When beginning a new fitness routine, remember that you want something convenient and fun. If something isn’t working for you, don’t be afraid to move on to the next option.

Hit the local library

Check your college library for books and DVDs with fitness routines; and if you can’t find any you like, head to a nearby community library where they’re likely to have a good selection. The best part about using the library is that you can regularly change up your routine. You can make copies of routines you find in books and create a binder, alternating routines every few weeks. With DVDs, you can select a new one every week.

Head for the pavement

Running outside will always be free. Get a group of friends together and consider starting a running group so everyone stays motivated. You can run through your campus or find a local trail. Keep things interesting by selecting a new path or location each week. If you live by hills or mountains, try challenging yourself with uphill runs to mix things up.

Find your faves on YouTube

100 hours of video are uploaded to YouTube every single minute! Using search terms like “dorm room workout” or “body weight exercises,” you’ll find some great routines that can be done in the comfort of your dorm room or outside. Subscribe to your favorite channels and keep your eyes peeled for fresh content. You could even consider making your own, which may increase your motivation and keep you excited about working out.

Find free workout websites

Similar to YouTube, there are now several fitness sites with videos that are completely free. The great thing about these is that you don’t have to sift through unrelated videos to get to what you want. If you enjoy yoga, try DoYogaWithMe.com. If you want to try out some new body weight exercise routines or interval training, try FitnessBlender.com. ToneItUp.com is geared towards women and provides new videos regularly as well.

There’s an app for that

The number of fitness apps grows every single day. If you have a smart phone, you can take advantage of free apps that provide interval timers, workouts, workout tracking and more. Checkout Workout Trainer, Nike Training Club and Daily Workouts Free to start. Or, just search keywords like “fitness,” “workout” and “exercise” to get started finding your own. Create a section on your phone just for these apps and try to rotate between them each time you exercise.

Start your own team or league

Many colleges have intramural sports teams but sometimes it costs to play. Start your own league or team with a group of friends. If you all work together, you can create flyers to hang on boards around campus, create a Facebook group, or even a free WordPress site to spread the word and keep track of interest.

Try it out

Many gyms and studios with fitness classes will let you come for one week free, or let you try one class for free. You may only get one week or one day, but depending on how many gyms and studios there are around you, it could take a while to use up all your freebies. This is also a great opportunity to figure out what you really like. Maybe a yoga class really appeals to you, or maybe you enjoy more dance or weight training. Once you figure out what kind of classes you like use that knowledge to find other free resources online or at the library as mentioned earlier.

If you have a little extra to spend

If you’re willing to spend a small amount of money, sign up with sites like GroupOn and Living Social which offer discounted passes to local studios. You can also purchase used fitness DVD’s online at Amazon and sell them back when you’re ready to try something new.  Last but not least, ask if your local rock climbing gym, yoga studio or golfing green offers student discounts.

There are plenty of opportunities for you to stay fit and have fun on a student budget. The most important thing is to do things you enjoy. Don’t be afraid to try new things until you find your niche.

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