The following is a guest post by the Primal college kids Max and Josh. You can visit their blog at CavemanCollege.com. If you are in college or plan to be soon then this is a must read. Enjoy!
Often times people think living a Primal life in college is a hard thing to do, whether due to the hectic schedule, poor food options, or other excuses. But the simple fact is, it’s easy to get your life on the right track today! We came up with 10 easy tips for you to start getting your life on the right track.
1. Every Meal can be Made Primal: 99% of the time (unless you’re at a restaurant that happens to ONLY deep fry everything) your meal can be made into a healthy, delicious, Primal meal. Sometimes that means picking chicken from one dish and the veggies from another or substituting a healthier side instead of french fries or chips.
2. Regulate your Sleep Schedule: Sleep is your savior in college, an extremely busy part of your life. Getting between 7-9 hours of sleep every night will ensure you have plenty of energy to push through that long lecture or lab the next day. If you have a late night every so often, that’s okay, just be sure to catch a nap the next day to catch up. That’s right. Nap time isn’t just for kindergarten anymore.
3. Don’t Overdo the Alcohol!: Of course there’s going to be alcohol on campus. No matter what you do, it’s going to be there. However, binge drinking, and overdoing it is just not primal. Develop a taste for red wine and aged spirits, or get creative with one of Robb Wolf’s famous Nor Cal margarita’s. Limit beer and vodka intake as much as possible.
4. Get Sufficient Exercise: This doesn’t necessarily mean being the star of the varsity football team. You can get plenty of exercise from walking around campus every day and working out a maximum of three times a week. Lifting heavy weights during those three workouts a week will not only get you stronger, but you will feel better on the inside and look better on the outside. Sounds like a perfect combination to me!
5. Stick to the Basics: The fact is, it’s college. The food that you get is not going to be perfect. That doesn’t mean you can’t stick to the basics of a Primal meal plan. While you may not get grass-fed rib eye’s, you may get burger night. So double the meat and throw some salad over it instead of the bun. You may not get wild-caught salmon, but you can probably find some fish at least once or twice a week! Use the cafeteria food to the best of your primal abilities! Remember: any meal can be made primal, you just have to be a little creative!
6. Befriend the Cook: Getting on good terms with the dining hall chef will work wonders for you in the long-run. The chefs in the kitchen are surprisingly not actually the grumpy old ladies with hair nets we see portrayed in movies. Almost as soon as you get to campus, introduce yourself to the chef and let him/her know that you’re into healthy eating. You will be surprised to find out just how much they are able to help your dietary needs!
7. Go Barefoot!: Ok, so maybe not completely, but at least wear some Vibram Five Fingers. You would be surprised to find out how many people on campus wear VFFs. Go up and introduce yourself, get to know them. Who knows, maybe they’re primal also, and you two can conquer your campus’ bad eating habits together. Finding people who are doing similar things to you will only make you do those things even better. So find your VFF buddy, start a paleo club, and conquer your campus!
8. Keep Some Cans in the Pantry: So maybe you’re that weird guy on campus who wears the funny shoes and doesn’t eat pizza at every opportunity; great work so far! You’re on your way to becoming a Caveman College graduate! All you need to do now is some cans of fish on hand. Sardines, salmon, tuna, whatever floats your boat. You will undoubtedly get some “what’s that smell?” comments, but don’t fret, instead, embrace the comments and utilize the opportunity to introduce your peers to the Paleo lifestyle! While you take your tin cans around, you will gain the protein and omega-3’s that the cafeteria food sometimes lacks.
9. Get Some Sun!: With four hour lectures in a dimly lit lecture hall, labs in a dark laboratory, and indoor libraries, it may seems difficult to find your vitamin D time. But it’s college! The picturesque campus has tons of beautiful green, grassy areas for you to toss the frisbee, or set up a nice outdoor study station! The benefits of vitamin D from sun exposure are exponential. Plus, you will get that nice tan and be ready for spring break, the natural way.
10. Have Fun!!: The single best thing you can do for your health is smile. It takes far less energy to smile than to frown. Go ahead. Try it now. Frowning creates stress in your jaw, neck, and shoulders, and stress is something none of us need! Being happy and having fun are key components to being Primal.
Following these 10 steps can lead to happiness in college and far into the future. Remember to never stress out, live life in the present and never look back. Happiness leads to love and love leads to success, and that is truly all that matters.
Max: Hello, my name is Max Ungar and I have been following a Paleolithic/Caveman style diet for about 1 year now and it has completely changed my life. Before I started the diet, I was around 225 at 6’0 and 16 years old. After a couple of months on the diet, I was down to 195 and after a few more months I was 6’2 195 lbs. Not to mention I felt better, and was performing better on the baseball field where I exert most of my energy. Having just been drafted by the Washington Nationals, I am now a college baseball player at Denison University, as well as a health nut. I believe in healthy lifestyles, paleo eating, crossfit, happiness, living life one step at a time, family, expecting nothing, and experiencing everything. Hopefully this blog will help you delve into the life of a paleolithic diet and keep it through tough, busy times such as college, parenting, or just life.
Josh: Hey! I am a recent high school graduate and am 5’11’’ and 175 lbs, but I wasn’t always in a healthy place. I’ve seen a lot of kids struggling with health and fitness over my years in school. I went Primal when my physical trainer helped me focus on my well-being in training for my baseball career. I credit a large percentage of my health on and off the baseball field to my Primal lifestyle. This coming fall I will be attending Dickinson College in Carlisle, Pennsylvania and am extremely excited to write about health in the college world, as a lot of times kids forget how to eat healthy when they go off to the college world. While we saw this as an opportunity to reach out to the college world, we also wanted this site to be a resource for people of all ages struggling with their health as a place for them to go and find great resources and information. Grok on!
Feel free to email us at email@example.com with any questions or comments you may have.
Toad Speaking: Are you in college and trying to live Primally? How is it going? Do you have any additional tips to add? Leave a comment below with your thoughts.
Don’t forget to visit Max and Josh’s blog at CavemanCollege.com.