Nicole Eisenberg>Freshman>Business>University of Maryland
Everybody looks into the mirror once in a while and does not like what they see. Unfortunately, thousands of teens every year take this one moment to heart, and let their subsequent decisions run their lives.
SADD, Students Against Destructive Decisions, explains that approximately “One percent of female adolescents suffer from anorexia, …[and] 1 to 2 percent of late adolescent or adult women suffer from bulimia.” These astounding numbers do not even include the male component of our population that is struggling with eating and dieting disorders.
This time of year is especially hard when it comes to dealing with insecurities, because everyone is thinking about Spring Break and how they want to rock a new teeny bikini or some six-pack abs. Ashley, a freshman at the University of Maryland, College Park, explains that it is during the February/March time when you begin thinking about getting in shape for bikini season, but her friend, Miera, explains that it all starts as far back as making your New Year’s resolutions.
Regardless of when you begin setting your goals, you do not need to take extreme and unhealthy measures to reach them; simply make minor adjustments to your lifestyle. These adjustments should not be considered a diet or a workout regime; they should just be part of your daily life.
To keep your body in tip-top shape (whatever shape you may be) inside and out, author of Chill Out and Get Healthy, Aimee E. Raupp, M.S., L.Ac., explains that you need to be eating everything in moderation. This means that if once in a while you absolutely need a sweet (go for Snackwell’s Devil’s Food Cookies for a healthy chocolate fix), it is okay. However, most of the time you need to be eating and enjoying healthy, pure, non-fried, body-fuel foods.
If you’re too busy to hit the gym, get creative about keeping in shape. Next time you’re walking to class, walk briskly. Walking across campus for 20 minutes while holding a heavy backpack is great exercise, especially if you have to walk up any big inclines. If you can spare the time, make trips to the gym in between study sessions. Just avoid working out for excessive periods of time: working out too much can actually be detrimental to your body because it goes into survival mode and stores fat.
Also try to get seven to nine hours of sleep every night. Sleep is when your body gets a chance to focus on repairing itself. If you run yourself ragged and do not sleep, your body will not have this restoring time and will not be able to function as well.
Finally, surround yourself with the people who make you smile and make you happy to be yourself. If you are happy in general, you will begin to be happier with your own body!