College can be one of the best times in life. Most people learn many things during college, both academically and personally. One of the defining factors of college, though, is the college lifestyle. The ability to make your own schedule, sleep in until the afternoon, party all night (or all afternoon), and eat whatever you want can often lead to tons of fun. It can also lead to pretty poor health. That’s why, once you hit the real world, it’s essential to lose that college mindset when it comes to your physical health. Here are the top four reasons why:
1. You are exactly what you eat.
You may have been able to get by in college by eating Ramen noodles, pizza, canned soups and fast food, but this kind of eating cannot be sustained for too long. No matter how high your metabolism or how in shape you feel, when you provide your body with nothing of substance, it does not have the means to regenerate and create healthy cells and muscle fiber. This will not only lead to an increase in fatty tissue, it will lead to a decrease in all-around health. While you may have thought about you food and drink choices as simply part of the party during college, now is the time to realize that what you eat determines exactly who you are and what type of lifestyle you are deciding to maintain.
2. You can’t cram for physical fitness.
College is full of all-nighters. Instead of breaking up goals and spreading them out over a few weeks or months, college students are apt to wait until the last possible minute to start the work that needs to be put in. While this can fly on a college exam and ultimately lead to perfect grades, this sort of mindset will never work when it comes to fitness. Fitness is not something that can be achieved over night. It takes daily choices and a huge amount of consistent work to be able to achieve a fitness goal and then sustain that goal. In fact, fitness is a lifestyle. It is not possible to achieve it on the fly and then move on.
3. With responsibility comes reward.
In college, many students can become locked in a bubble between totally adulthood and childhood. While most of a college student’s decisions are up to him, he is still functioning within a school system and often on the dime of his parents. That’s why true responsibility is a hazy thing in college; you can make it through without being all that responsible at all. When it comes to fitness and health, however, you will only reap the rewards by going about it responsibly and with dedication. The only person in control of the way your body looks and feels is you. So, it’s time to stop placing responsibility or blame on anyone or anything else. If you take responsibility for your own body, you will be able to reach your goals.
4. Sometimes you have to keep a disciplined schedule.
One of the most distinctive elements of college life is an ever-changing, flexible schedule. Students have class times throughout the day and a varying amount of extracurricular responsibilities, but, aside from that, they are free to go about their days as they please. This often involves sleeping in, sun bathing, watching movies, impromptu football games, and the like. But, after college ends and graduates are holding down 9-5 jobs, the need for a more disciplined schedule comes into play. One of the main troubles people have with staying fit is finding the time. If you are not absolutely disciplined about getting to the gym, you will not see much progress. In this sense, leaving the free days and nights of college behind is really important. Making an exercise schedule and sticking to it is essential for success.