Staying on Track over Spring Break
Jan 31, 2017 12:46PM
by Rachel FeidelmanThough it seems like winter just started the other day, warm weather is right around the corner. With warm weather comes vacation and with vacation comes relaxation. What many people fail to recognize is that vacation does not necessarily need to be associated with unhealthy behavior. Though daily routines are disrupted during time off work and school, is it still possible and highly beneficial to maintain a somewhat health-conscious lifestyle throughout breaks, both physically and mentally. A happy medium is easily achievable and it takes minimal effort to do so.
Firstly, remember that physical activity does not necessarily mean going for a run or hitting the gym. Instead of using these somewhat chore-like activities to get your exercise in, consider playing a sport with family or friends, walking along the beach or swimming. While you may not be drenched in sweat by the end, these activities will still increase your heart rate and probably work muscles that are typically ignored.
Vacation is a time to indulge in foods that you may not enjoy on a daily basis. However, modification is key. It is okay to eat dessert or drink high-calorie cocktails, but try avoiding overconsumption. By devouring multiple portions of unhealthy foods, it’s possible that your body will adjust to these habits and it will be more difficult to get back on track when vacation is over. This may also cause feelings of illness during your time off, which is no fun at all.
In addition to staying physically fit, mental health is equally, if not more, important to maintain during vacation. Time off is meant for recharging and taking a break from the stresses of daily life, so make sure to use it for exactly that. Stay away from work emails and calls, catch up on sleep and try to limit social media usage. Instead of worrying about how many likes the picture you just posted got, leave the phone in the hotel room and go out and have fun.
Rachel Feidelman is a junior at the University of Maryland, studying journalism and economics. She is also an editorial intern with Natural Awakenings.