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I don’t know about everyone else, but autumn tends to be my favorite time of the year. There’s something so irresistible about staying inside and cozying up to the fire, surrounded by pumpkin spice lattes, cinnamon cake pops, and warm apples and ice cream- just thinking about it makes me giddy with excitement.

What’s not so exciting, though, is the 15 pounds I’ll gain  before Halloween starts (oh no!).

I’ve been active my entire life – I played numerous sports in school and still continue to run and go to the gym on a daily basis. However, this has not made me invincible to the autumn and winter goodies that seem to pack on a little extra on my stomach. Of course, there’s nothing wrong with gaining a few extra pounds around the holiday season – it’s bound to happen! However, it is important to stay healthy throughout the fall semester no matter how cold it can get. With midterms coming up, I understand how hard it can be to maintain an active lifestyle while juggling a job, school, and other obligations and activities, all on the same plate. Here are some helpful, easy tips to get your blood pumping a little extra throughout the week!

  • Park further from your next class. It’s a bit easier to get a few more steps in when you’ve got a work a little extra. Try parking in the lot across campus or getting off on an earlier bus stop. Not only is this stress-free, it’s also cost-effective.
  • Take the stairs. Not only will you eliminate the awkward glances inside the elevator, but you’ll also get a short burst of a workout while climbing the stairs, which activates your quads, glutes, and hamstrings.
  • Make a plan and stick to it. It’s easy to forget something if it’s not in writing. Try writing down a set number of workouts you want to do each week, and check it off once it’s done. It doesn’t have to be extreme or overboard – it can be as easy as one 15-minute workout every Wednesday and Friday!
  • Take a morning walk. Autumn is the perfect season to squeeze in an early morning stroll. It’s not too hot and humid like summer, and it’s not too cold and frigid like winter. Wake up a few minutes early and step outside for a good start to the day.
  • Don’t stress. Everything takes time, so relax! There’s nothing wrong with scarfing down a bag of cookies on a rainy Wednesday while doing homework (speaking from my own experience), as long as you feel good doing it! Believe it or not, stress can actually lead to weight gain! It releases a hormone called cortisol, which in turn lowers your metabolism while simultaneously holding on to fat.

Most importantly – have fun! Nothing is that serious, and nothing is that deep, so enjoy that eggnog and run those miles. Happy learning!

Annika La Vina

My name is Annika La Vina (pronounced like Monica without the M). I am 20 years old, and I am currently a new student at MC. I love all kinds of sports and am super into fitness - catch me running on the side of Rockville Pike on a sunny day! In addition, I love reading and writing and have been an avid writer since elementary school. I dabble in all kinds of major writing forms - fictional, academic and now, blogging!
After high school, I traveled and worked around the world for two years. It was terrifying and exhilarating at the same time, but most of all, it was rewarding. Not only did I experience new cultures and meet tons of people, I also realized several things about myself - the most important being that I needed to go back to school.
It’s frightening - super frightening actually - to embark on a new stage in life. However, you’re not alone. Join me in my newest, weirdest, scariest, most exciting adventure yet - college!

This Post Has One Comment

  1. Annika, I couldn’t agree with you more. I love fall and the nip in the air along with everything pumpkin flavored (you’ll go crazy at Trader Joe if into pumpkin!) and Halloween and Thanksgiving. The cooler air is a motivator to crack down, snuggle up, and get some studying done. Far fewer distractions than summer! Best of luck this semester!

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