University life opens new and exciting opportunities for young adults. However amidst all of the inevitable late nights, midnight binges and takeaways, students may quickly find themselves gaining unwanted weight. This is a nightmare for those who have aspirations to build an outstanding physique to go with their degree. Thankfully this can be turned on its head by following some advice that I wish I had come across before starting university. Read on for 5 Top Physique Hacks for Uni Students!
1. Think outside the box
Search through most traditional bodybuilding websites and more often than not they’ll tell you that the best way to build muscle is through a combination of hard work in the gym and eating lots of chicken breasts, whole grain rice and drinking lots of protein shakes. While this may be true to some extent, it can often prove expensive. Although they may be the less glamorous options, store brand peanut butter and tinned fish are great ways to get extra protein into your diet without spending big.
Many gym goers train extremely hard and have fantastic diets but their lack of sleep hinders progress. University social life can lead to late nights followed by early morning lectures, leaving less than optimal time for growth hormones to be produced and for muscles to repair themselves. You’ll be pleasantly surprised at how energised even a 45 minute nap before training can leave you feeling.
3. Use your free time wisely, try different things and enjoy your training
The truth of the matter is that occasionally at university (especially in your first year) you will have absolutely nothing to do. If you’re serious about training long term, use this free time to explore different options. If you’re used to training with weights why not go along and try out a boxing class? Not only will your body react differently to new stressors but you may find you enjoy the variety and develop other core abilities like stamina, balance and hand-to-eye coordination (Bruce Lee for example was a Cha Cha Dance Champion!). This is of the utmost importance if you plan on training for the rest of your life.
4. Find a training partner with similar goals
Whether you are a bodybuilder or a marathon runner, having a training partner with similar goals can only help you improve. I am of the belief that you never truly train your hardest unless you are in a competitive environment. Training with others also forces you to embrace philosophies you may otherwise not have considered solo. And while some days at least a few among you would rather be watching Netflix, the likelihood is that a good training partner will encourage you to get to the gym lest you get left behind.
5. Never become discouraged
Throughout your training lifetime you’ll often wonder if the healthy eating is worth it or getting teased by your friends for opting for an early night in rather than a night out. While it is imperative to find a balance between your goals and having a bit of fun (especially at university) it’s equally important to remember that long term rewards always beat immediate gratification. And while training may not always be fun (though it mostly can be if you get creative about it!) it will always be rewarding.
So there you have it, 5 tips that can help you meet your physique goals even while you’re at university. Don’t make any more excuses and don’t hold yourself back!