10 Ways to Lose Weight during the School Year ...

Lots of readers have been asking about the best ways to lose weight during school year activities, and with good reason. The amount of work you do in high school is crazy, since your teachers are preparing you for college. Add in extracurricular activities, spending time with your friends, and part time jobs, and it's a wonder you even have time to sleep. Once you get to college, it's even worse. You may spend less time in classes but you have to spend more time studying and writing papers. It's hard to find the time for health, let alone learn about all the ways to lose weight during the school year. As it happens, however, in addition to some truly effortless fixes, there are also ways you can stay fit while still doing the academic thing. Here's everything you need to know about how to lose weight during school!

1. Set a Schedule

One of the most fundamental ways to lose weight during school year activities involves setting a schedule for yourself. Whether you're in high school or college, free time is practically nonexistent. As a result, even though it may be the last thing you want to do, you need a set schedule. If you don't have one, you'll never find the time to exercise or plan healthy meals. Make time for your schoolwork, your homework, your free time, and your fitness time. No, you don't have to sacrifice fun times with your friends, just make sure that you regularly set aside a block of free time devoted to exercise.

2. Choose Gym

In the later years of high school and certainly in college, gym is no longer a requirement. This can be problematic only because, in many cases, gym class provides the only opportunity many students have to exercise and be active. One of the most surefire ways to lose weight during the school year is to thus choose gym as an elective. If you have the time and the inclination, you'll have the opportunity in high school or at university to continue taking gym. You may only get to play a team game or walk the track, but you're still doing rigorous activities. If you simply don't have time to work out, this is an excellent way to keep fit.

3. Hit the Field

There are a lot of extracurricular activities that give you the opportunity to stay fit and, well, active. As you'll see, I'll talk about some of them in detail, but I also want to talk about how generally beneficial it is. Whether you're part of a team, take an extracurricular that lets you get some exercise outside, or simply make use of your school's track or football field on your own time, I urge you to do so. Just taking a daily walk around the track with your friends is a great way to exercise regularly. Since middle schools, high schools, and colleges all have facilities open to students, make sure you take advantage of them!

4. Take up a Sport

That being said, sports present excellent ways to lose weight during the school year. There are dozens, from team sports to individual activities, depending on your interests, your skills, and your preferences. So, you might choose volleyball or softball, soccer or lacrosse, swimming or track, or activities like cheering or color guard. There are endless possibilities, as well as endless benefits. In addition to getting lots of exercise, you'll be learning teamwork, making friends, and activities like these look fantastic on your college resumes!

5. Play an Instrument

Speaking of the color guard... This one might sound weird, especially if you've read about other ways to lose weight during school year activities. Other lists focus on many of the things I have mentioned and will mention here, but you know, I never see anything about band. If you play in the band, whether it's concert band, jazz band, or marching band, whether you're woodwind or brass, part of the drum line or a member of the flag corps, you will stay fit. Marching band is arguably better because you're outside, doing drills, learning routines, and marching up and down the field, but even sitting in a concert classroom is beneficial. You'll learn excellent breath control, you'll make your lungs very healthy and happy, and that helps with exercising as well. You'll have better capacity, and you'll feel that in other areas of your life.

6. Ditch the Cafeteria Food

Naturally, the food you eat plays a huge part in how much weight you gain or lose. Regardless of weight, the food you eat affects your overall health as well. Cafeteria food is just awful for you. It's full of bad carbohydrates, it's fattening, and it makes you feel sluggish. If you've ever eaten a huge slice of pizza at noon or grabbed a hamburger from your college cafe, and then struggled to stay awake in your next class, you know what I'm talking about here. It's far better to bring your lunch or to at least make healthier choices. Pick a salad or one of the healthier sandwich options. I know that heat lamp pizza is tempting, but you'll pay for your cheesy transgressions in any number of ways.

7. Eat Several Meals a Day

It's hard to eat healthy at school. Eating five, six, or even seven small meals a day is well nigh impossible. It's easier in college than it is in middle or high school, but it's still possible there. Even if you eat an apple and a slice of cheddar or a carton of yogurt between classes, you're doing well. Trying to get all your nutrients in three huge meals just doesn't work well for everyone. Your metabolism, your energy, and your general health benefit much more from smaller but more frequent meals. Which brings me to...

8. Exercise Portion Control

Portion control is so important, especially at school. School lunches are hefty. Yes, you get to choose what you want these days, at least in most schools, but you still get enormous portions. Those frequent meals depend on smaller portions; the idea is to get just the push you need to take you through the next few hours. By eating the correct portions, you're also teaching your body not to overeat. You're training yourself in a healthier way, so you won't get hungry as often and you'll have more energy throughout the day.

9. Cut out the TV

Watching TV might not seem like a big deal, and trust me, I'm not telling you to stop watching it completely. What I mean is that you shouldn't watch television while you're doing your homework or studying for a test. Not only does it distract you from what you need to do, but it's more tempting to sit there and snack on something at the same time. You might not even be really hungry, but munching on chips or popcorn is common while you're watching your favorite shows or movies. If you still get hungry while you're studying, turn to healthier options like raw fruit or vegetables, whole wheat crackers, and things like that.

10. Talk to Others

The best way to lose weight during the school year is to be open. If you're having trouble finding the time or the motivation to exercise, be active, and get fit, talk to people. Discuss your problems with your parents, your guidance counselor, the school nurse, or your friends – many of whom probably feel the same way. With your friends, especially, you can actually motivate each other in healthy ways, by cheering each other on, offering helping hands, and getting active together.

I really hope you can adapt some of these ways to lose weight during school year activities to your lifestyle. A lot of them are actually really fun, and the others won't require much effort on your part. Whether you're trying to stay fit for your health, to look your very best, or to get rid of the freshman 15, these ideas and activities should really help. Do you have any other tips on how to lose weight during school?

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