Healthy college living on a budget: Tips that won’t break the bank!

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Initially, hearing the word “healthy” or terms like “staying fit” can be scary for many people, including busy, stressed out college students. However, it is important to keep in mind that having a piece of fruit won’t be the end of frugality. There are a few basic steps that anyone can take in order to start living a healthier, happier and more rewarding lifestyle.

Instead of paying an arm and a leg, stretch them!

A popular misconception is that working out and staying physically and mentally fit can cost a ton of money, however, this is far from true. In fact, you can do all of these and more for virtually nothing.

There are many quick and fun exercise activities out there including squats, jumping jacks and the classic jump rope. Squats are the perfect option to build leg muscle and tighten the buttocks, and both jumping jacks and jump rope are fun nostalgic ways of getting the heart pumping and circulation flowing.

Another one of these activities almost every college students engages in every day and probably without noticing is walking! According to WebMD if you walk four miles a day four times a week, you can burn about 1,600 calories, or nearly half a pound a week.

With all of the ripping and running that college has students engage in, every student is most likely walking four miles a day, but can you imagine if more initiative was taken in between?

Instead of taking the elevator, try the stairs. Take a deep breath and stop to smell the flowers around campus. Instead of hopping on the shuttle, walk to class…if the weather permits of course!

Saving a dollar, while saving time

Taking out time to care for our bodies can seem impossible while juggling homework, tests, jobs and personal lives, but it is possible! Regular exercise can boost our mood, build our immune system, clear our skin and even help us rest better. Which college student wouldn’t want that?

Adding in 30 mins of physical activity a day in between standard daily movements you can break the mold and create a method to the madness of college life.

A great way to keep on top of it all is scheduling and organization. Whether you use a traditional planner, an alarm or a calendar reminder on your smartphone, you can do it all while saving a dollar and saving time.

The first step is to gather your thoughts, work schedule and know what you have to do. You can organize it for the next couple of days, the week, the month or the entire semester. Once you finish this step, prioritize.

If possible keep, your work days separate from your class days and put what is most important at the top of your “to-do” list and don’t sweat the small stuff. Once you have figured out your work and class schedule you can start small and build your way up.

Pick two days out the week that works best to engage in 30 minutes of conscious physical activity. Before you know it, with all of the constant calendar reminders you previously set blowing up your phone, two days will increase to three and so forth.

Once you get the hang of your new schedule, venture out and visit the Georgia State University recreational center. Take advantage of the fun and free exercise classes offered to students throughout the year like Zumba.

Being healthy doesn’t mean bland

Being healthy doesn’t mean that food has to be tasteless, boring or pricey. In fact, it can be fun, quick and inexpensive.

The classic smoothie is a perfect example. You don’t need an expensive juicing machine, all you need is a standard blender, a couple of your favorite fruits and veggies, and a healthy liquid base.

The great thing about a smoothie is that depending on what you put in it, such as potassium filled bananas or yogurt, you can stay full for the first half of the day. This delicious liquid concoction can be completed and consumed in a matter of minutes while saving you a pretty penny and valuable time.

Although the road to the pinnacle of health can be rugged, it’s a journey worth taking and when you stick with it, it will all become second nature. So, in between those late night pizza parties in the library and ice cream with friends, don’t forget to do the little things that count!