5 Ways to Stay Healthy at RIT

With the holidays coming up, RIT students and faculty returning home for Thanksgiving are ready for some home-cooked meals and relaxing before the few weeks before finals. The last few weeks can be quite hectic! Sometimes students who are surrounded by constant classes, studying, homework, meetings, and maintaining a relative social life, can forget to retain a healthy lifestyle. Some students don’t believe in the need to develop healthy living styles now – but eating ramen and microwavable mac and cheese while pulling all nighters may have severe consequences to your health. Developing healthy habits in your life as a college student will only make it easier to stay healthy throughout your life. Here are five tips to stay healthy at RIT!

1. Exercise – There are plenty of ways to get exercise on campus and walking the quarter mile every day is a good start. However, the Wiedman Fitness Center in Hale-Andrews Student Life Center offers a seven day schedule to all RIT students. Even just working out for half an hour a day could improve your overall health! Hale-Andrews also offers a five multi-purpose courts, a dance and aerobics studio, an elevated 1/8 mile running track, conference and classroom space – you can even go for a swim in the Judson/Hale Aquatics Center! Check here for the hours to all the facilities provided around campus including Wiedman Fitness Center, the Judson/Hale Aquatics Center, the Red Barn, and more!

2. Eat right – Probably one of the easiest ways to stay healthy and yet a bit difficult in the life of a busy college student. You might not realize your intake of food and how it’s affecting you! A lot of college students fail to eat right – why else would everyone know the definition of the “freshman 15”? Even after freshman year, some students still struggle with maintaining a healthy diet and RIT has many healthy options at every corner of its food and dining services.

Though there is always a large availability of food here on campus – Gracie’s, The Commons, and more –  with the help of RIT’s Dining Services’ website, students can see the vast majority of healthy options that their college has to offer – with even more guidance on nutrition labelling!

3. Get on a good sleep schedule – All nighters are quite common on a college campus. Seeing students walking to class half-asleep is no fun, and teachers don’t want you to fall asleep in their classes (but some of us have done it!) All nighters are tempting when cramming for a test when the stress and anxiety levels are running high. That weekend to celebrate, you might just go stay out late until the early morning hours having fun with your friends. The goal here is to try to not make that a habit. Sure we all have like to have fun and we all sometimes have to cram for a test, but trying to make a decent sleep schedule is hard for a lot of college students. Students aresaid to need at least seven to nine hours of sleep at night. You might be thinking that there is no way you’d ever get that much sleep based on your homework and cram sessions, but sleep deprivation can lead to decreased brain function, fatigue, headaches and weight loss or gain. Losing out on a good night’s sleep is never the right answer! Instead, try to stay on a schedule by avoiding caffeinated drinks before bed. Keep track of the hours you sleep with an app on your phone which can help you regulate your nightly routines. Best of all, even if you’re feeling tired during the day – check out RIT’s own Nap Map to find out the best place on campus to take a short power nap to help you get through the day!

4. Hydrate – Drink your water! It’s a sentence we’ve heard plenty of times yet many choose those caffeinated and sugary drinks to fuel them throughout the day. However, water replenishes your body – keeping you more focused and energized throughout the day. All of that sugar and caffeine can wear your body down, making it more difficult to focus and stay awake as it only gives your short bursts of energy. Drinking water will improve your overall health and keep you moving throughout your day so find a reusable water bottle and take it to class!

5. Relax – Probably the most difficult thing to do as a college student. Relaxing never seems to be an option but the truth is, is that you need to take moments to just breath. Taking breaks and having downtime is essential to staying healthy. If you’re stressed from studying, take a moment to read a book or hang out with your friends, even take a nap! Stress management is like time management – just another thing students learn as they grow. Stress and anxiety is a major problem in young adults and especially college students, which can be detrimental to your health. Take a moment in every day to just step back and breath! Find ways to help yourself relax – it can do wonders for your physical and mental health.

Happy Fight Procrastination Day

With all of the great facilities, activities and events RIT offers, it is easy to get distracted. However, procrastinating student responsibilities can leave you feeling disappointed at the end of the semester.

Here are six tips to help you resist the urge to procrastinate:

Make to-do lists

Making lists in advance will help you organize and manage your workload.

Set deadlines for yourself

For long-term assignments, plan ahead. Decide what you want to get done by a certain time and stick to your goal.

Study in an environment with minimal distractions

If you have a lot to get done, avoid doing work with friends. Put your phone away and pick a spot that will help you stay focused, such as a quiet spot in the library.

Treat yourself

Don’t pass Ben and Jerry’s, stop to get yourself a cone when you finish your work or achieve your goal- reward yourself.  

Get enough sleep

Pulling an all-nighter is not the answer to your procrastination problem. Without the proper amount of sleep, you have an increased risk of getting sick, making poor judgments, and forgetfulness.   

Plan ahead

Make plans for doing activities ahead of time so your last minute plans won’t get in the way of your study time.

Still feeling unproductive? There are many resources on campus to help you stay on track. Everyone has different academic needs. Therefore, it is important to find help at the right place for you. The Multicultural Center for Academic Success, the RIT Libraries, the Writing Commons, and the Academic Support Center are only a few of the options you can turn to on campus for assistance. Here is what Cha Ron Sattler-Leblanc, the Senior Director at the Academic Support Center, had to say regarding procrastination:

Services the ASC Center offers to help students stay on track for academic success

When you walk into the ASC Center, you’ll meet with one of our peer or professional coaches who can support you with custom strategies as well as accountability to put those to practice, and refer to other campus resources if necessary.

The ASC also provides, at no additional fee, academic success courses such as Insights on Success and Applied Study Strategies.  These courses can develop and strengthen your skills and support their implementation and practice over a term – a great investment in your academic career! (Did I mention, no additional costs?)

The Academic Support Center offers a number of different supports to help you STOP procrastinating!  Check out some of our great resources on time management over at ASC On-Line. If you NEED a break, these short videos can give you some great information and get you back on track.

We also offer a number of great tools in our study tool kit. Stop by the ASC (above Artesano’s) to get a copy or print off what you need here!

Why fighting against procrastination important

Procrastination is normal – but we need to recognize when it’s problematic.  Our brains and bodies need a little recovery time every now and again.  Be sure to pace yourself (and learn better planning skills!). You’ll find that by scheduling in a few reasonable, quality breaks, you’ll be in a better state of mind to get your work done.  You’ll have LOTS of opportunity to discover how you learn best in the coming years.  Perhaps it’s less about fighting procrastination and more about learning how to plan and manage!

How to avoid procrastination in your own life

Take control of distractions.  Consider all the alerts in your life: Necessary?  Put your phone on airplane mode, turn off the alert on email, and find some extensions for your browser to remind you to stay on task and keep you off social media.  I use one that’s too profane to share here, but it’s a great reminder for me to stay on task and recognize when I’m looking for a break – and choosing more effective ways to take those breaks.

And while this sounds counter-intuitive, if you have a ton to do, schedule a break.  Use a timer to stay on task and then use a little break or reward to give yourself some time to recover (if necessary, set another time to get back to work).  While we all have those times where we just have to hammer due to our bad judgement – take a little time to reflect, learn and do better next time. (And come talk to us at the ASC, and we’ll help!)

It’s easy to get caught up in a circle of procrastination, but if you fight against it, your life as a student will be a lot easier. Start your semester right. Happy Fight Procrastination Day Tigers!

 

Check out the ASC website for more information!