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How to Have a Healthy (And Balanced!) Hot Girl Semester

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This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Alabama chapter.

Summer 2021 was truly a (s)hot girl summer. I had a consistent workout schedule, ate healthy homecooked meals, laid in the sun (using my favorite sunscreen, of course) and prioritized rest. My physical and mental health was *chef’s kiss*. Sure, I was a grandma, but I THRIVED, okay?! 

Then, I came back to college. And now I’ve jumped back into Wednesday nights out, Fried Fridays, and, most importantly, Taco Mama queso. All these things are wonderful and amazing, but like everything in life, as the queen Brittani Lancaster says, “balance is key.” 

So, to ensure my hottest and healthiest semester yet, I talked to Alabama’s CHAARG ambassador and president, Alexis Shenefield. Bama CHAARG is part of a national organization, CHAARG, that has over 100 chapters and 9,800 members. CHAARG aims to empower college women by liberating them from the elliptical and igniting a passion for movement. Alabama’s chapter is a community of hype women that help you achieve your physical and personal goals. We all know that prioritizing health can be challenging in college, but Alexis gave me some tips to stay balanced and healthy this semester! 

Exercise is important for both your mental and physical health. The key to sticking to a solid exercise routine is finding a workout that you enjoy, whether that be walking, lifting weights, joining a group workout class, running, dancing, or kickboxing. It also helps to mix things up to stay motivated. “Change it up and keep a variety so that nothing gets too boring or stagnant,” says Alexis. As a Bama CHAARG member, you can try different workout classes each week, such as Pure Barre, CrossFit RTR, Cycle 315, and F45 (a personal favorite of mine). 

Another way to maintain a hot girl semester is through hydration! Treat yourself to a cute reusable water bottle like this one, and take advantage of the water fountains on campus. Alexis recommends adding some lemonade, lemon, or fruit to your water to make it more appetizing to drink. Nuun or Liquid IV can increase hydration and replace electrolytes, which is great for hangovers and the Alabama heat. 

Of course, it’s important to fuel up! Alexis recommends focusing on your fruit and veggie intake, while also embracing balance. Some of Alexis’s favorite healthy go-to’s include oranges, carrots with hummus, and anything with peanut butter. However, don’t feel like you have to skip out on going out or restaurants with your friends. “It’s okay to indulge. College is a social time, and you deserve to make memories with you friends!” says Alexis. 

Overall, focus on balance and self-love. Fueling your body and getting in movement doesn’t need to be viewed as punishment or as a tool to shrink your body. It’s best to think of it as a way of self-care and love for your body. “In a culture of social media, comparison is easy but try to focus on listening to your body and what it needs,” says Alexis. Even though it can be hard to say no to a night out, Alexis recommends prioritizing rest and taking a night to recover when needed. At the end of the day, you will remember your personal growth and the experiences you made with others, so be sure to prioritize yourself, your health, and your happiness this semester!

Madeline is a senior studying public relations at the University of Alabama. She launched the Her Campus Alabama chapter in 2020. When she's not obsessing over liquid blush and lip gloss, she's day dreaming about moving to New York.