From College Student to Full-Time Employee: How to Stay Healthy

(image via Toon Pool)

About a month ago, I graduated from college and began working at Oldways full time. Entering the “real world” is really not as scary as adults want you to think. Transitioning from a long-term intern to official employee has been both fun and educational. Besides, as long as I don’t have to write any more 15-page term papers, I have no complaints.

My only real struggle as an official adult so far is finding time to exercise. I went from essentially being able to arrange my class and work schedule in any way I pleased, to being busy literally all day Monday through Thursday (thankfully I have Fridays off until September. A big shout out to our office summer hours!)  Sure, I could just give up on exercising during the week but I worked hard to get in shape over the last few years, and I don’t want to lose that.  So, without any further ado, here are the three best pieces of advice I’ve been given to help me transition to a busy and fit working girl.  (Thanks, Mom).

  1. Create an exercise routine you can stick with. Motivating yourself to actually work out is hard enough, so make it as painless as possible. My morning commute takes several hours via public transportation, so my alarm goes off at 5:45 a.m. That’s about four and a half hours earlier than I want to be up. So let’s be realistic here – there is just no way I am getting up any earlier to run. I might be able to force myself to go for a few days, but soon enough, I’m going to start skipping workouts. So instead, I run after work. That’s not exactly what I want to do after a long day in the office, but for me, it’s more bearable than lacing up my sneakers at the crack of dawn.
  2. You have to make time to exercise. Sure, we’re all busy. Between working 40 hours a week and the additional time spent commuting, I could easily make excuses (and okay, sometimes I do). But there are always at least 30 minutes each day that I can designate for exercise. When that time arrives, I do it no matter how hungry or tired or lazy I am feeling, and I'm always glad I did.
  3. Find little ways to turn your daily routines into physical activity. I try to stretch at my desk or take walks on my lunch breaks whenever I can. This also includes things like taking the stairs instead of the elevator, housecleaning, and dancing around the room to your favorite song. Every little bit helps!

Remember that the Mediterranean Diet Pyramid features daily exercise, and that’s just as important as eating a healthy diet. So no matter how busy you are, find a way to get some sort of physical activity.

And please, feel free to share some of your own tips with us! Trust me, I need all the help I can get.

- Chrisanne

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