How to be Healthy When You’re a Student

Work, school, study, repeat

With it being the third week of fall semester, my days have been full. Trying to balance being a student, a part-time employee, and having a social life is nothing short of challenging. Maybe I’m the only one, but one of the first things that I sacrifice when life gets hectic is taking time for myself and focusing on my health. When I have to be at work at 7 it’s hard to eat a filling, healthy breakfast unless I wake up extremely early. Then only have an hour between work and class makes it very difficult to pack a lunch and usually leaves me grabbing something quick. Not to mention, with a packed schedule that demands late nights, early mornings and focus for school work, it’s very easy to become best friends with caffeine. Oh, and working at a coffee shop doesn’t help very much.

Can anyone relate?

For a second there I forgot to spend any time working on myself, and I’m the type of person that if I continue to forget about bettering myself for more than two weeks I start drowning. I won’t even notice it sometimes until subtle things become apparent and I have to stop and realize that the cause of them are from neglecting certain aspects of my life. You guessed it, the first place I see a negative change is my skin… whether it’s from stress or cheating slightly in my diet, I notice direct correlation with breakouts.

Just this past week I looked in the mirror, and all at once, realized wow, when was the last time I did something for me? Mind you, I suddenly became aware of this because of a breakout that gave me a flashback of the years I struggled with acne. I slowly had been losing sight of my health and skincare roots. For the first time I felt as if I could relate to everyone who’s told me their countless excuses as to why they don’t eat a clean diet- “I’m too busy” “I work too much” “School is hard and I can’t worry about that” “My schedule doesn’t allow for me to eat good”. So, if you’re in the same boat as me, rowing down a fast-paced river with lots of rapids, I want you to know that you can still eat clean, but don’t stress about being perfect.

My best tips to live healthy while being busy

1.Make the best possible choices

It’s okay that you’re not super woman and don’t have time to meal prep every single meal seven days a week, and it’s okay that you want to sleep in the extra thirty minutes instead of cooking a full breakfast spread. I understand that life is busy and unpredictable and sometimes you don’t want to worry about working a full day and then coming home to cook dinner. However, what you do have control over is choosing healthy restaurants to get takeout from, and picking the best options when it comes to food. Opt for gluten free whenever possible (almost everywhere should have at least one option nowadays), ask for the dairy free option, and try to go away from processed, sugary foods. Start ordering coffee with honey instead of a sugary syrup sweetener, or switch out cream for an alternative milk like coconut.

2. Have healthy snacks on hand

Trust me, I know how tempting it is to eat the quickest thing while you’re running around town doing errands, studying or find yourself hungry at work… but one of my best recommendations is to always keep quick, healthy snacks on hand for those times when you’re in a pinch. Some of my favorites are RX bars, macro bars, lara bars or perfect bars. Fruit, or trail mix is a great choice, or even hummus and veggies is simple to pack as a snack. Instead of getting fast food, plan ahead and stock up on healthy food when you’re at the grocery store, so that you have healthy options within reach.

3. Drink water

Of course this one should be a no brainer, but for some reason I know that when I’m non-stop busy, I forget to stay hydrated. There are so many benefits to drinking water it’s crazy: clearer skin, increase energy, flushes toxins from the body, aids in weight loss (just to name a few).

3. Get healthy sweets

If you’re anything like me I have the biggest sweet tooth, like ever. So, I think I would die if I didn’t have healthy sweets available to me. Sometimes we need to be rewarded- whether it’s for a hard day at work, or school, or  you’re on your period, or maybe you just feel like eating chocolate and watching the office… you deserve it. But instead of indulging in overly sweet, fake, or processed sugars I recommend opting for the alternatives (and yes, they still taste great, I promise!).

Chocolate: Lily’s Chocolate, Evolve chocolate

Simple Mills cookies– these are the best cookies ever- sweetened with coconut sugar, grain free, and freakin’ delicious

Coconut Bliss ice cream: better than regular full dairy ice cream… this stuff is addicting and only sweetened with agave nectar. What the heck!

4. Invest in yourself

Take time for yourself. Take a bath, put on a face mask, watch your favorite show or listen to your favorite music, light some candles and remember your worth. I find it much easier for myself to stay in a healthy mindset and continue to pursue goals when I practice self care. I love to read the bible and write in my prayer journal. We have to remember to love ourselves and be kind to our bodies because they’re the only ones we have. Don’t be so hard on yourself: it’s okay if you eat chocolate or have something other than a salad, just listen to your body.

5. Be thankful

Count your blessings. From personal experience, I know that I am most happy and healthy when I remember to be positive and have a grateful heart always. If you let negativity creep in it can be easy to lose sight of health goals and caring for our bodies- inside and out.

thank you for the support, and thanks for following me.

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read my previous blog post: The Unknown

 

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