Like most girls, when I was young I participated in many activities such as soccer, dance, golf and tennis. As I got older, I narrowed it down to dance and tennis, and when I reached high school, I started focusing more on my studies. Tennis was my only source of exercise, and there were many days that I didn’t even play due to the weather or lack of access to a court.
I realized that not exercising each day, combined with not eating healthy, was causing fatigue, blemishes and moodiness. My energy and confidence were at an all-time low. At this point, I decided to make a workout schedule that would fit in with my school work, extracurricular and social life. I now go on walks, do yoga, run, go to the gym, and anything that is fun and easy.
Exercise is only part of the equation. Not eating healthy is like putting the wrong kind of gas in your car; it just doesn’t work properly. For breakfast, I have a favorite strawberry banana smoothie that I can have while I’m getting ready in the morning. I take my lunch to school every day and make sure I pack some fruit. At dinner I eat a wide range of foods and always have a salad because it’s an easy way to eat veggies. I drink milk and lots of water but never soda because of the sugar (10 teaspoons in the average 12 ounce can!). When I go out with my friends, I’ll splurge on whatever junk food everyone is having, but I don’t worry about it because I’ve made healthy choices during the week.
Although it’s tempting to check out social media instead of going on the treadmill, I always feel better when I’m done. I’ve noticed that I have more energy, my skin looks better, and I’m happier. Although I am not a size 0, I am healthy, happy, confident, which beats trying to meet society’s “standards” any day. By maintaining a well-balanced diet and exercising daily, even if it’s just a walk around the neighborhood, I can be in good health and will build good habits for college and beyond.