Her Campus Logo Her Campus Logo
Wellness > Health

5 Ways That I’ve Maintained My Health And Fitness Goals At UCLA

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

Three things that might not seem like they belong in a sentence together are health, fitness, and UCLA. Home to the best dining hall food and in a city full of limitless opportunities for foodie adventures, UCLA may not seem like the most ideal place to maintain your health goals. However, a major part of the UCLA culture is fitness and wellness, which perfectly balances our not so healthy eating tendencies. Over the past two years, I’ve compiled some very helpful habits that have allowed me to enjoy all of the foodie galore that LA has to offer, while simultaneously reaching my personal fitness goals!

1. The 10,000 Step rule

The easiest way to keep up with your body’s demands for a healthy lifestyle is by getting your steps in! Luckily, UCLA is the perfect place to achieve this goal almost every day. The numerous sets of stairs, steep incline, and long distance walks to and from class is a guaranteed workout in itself. Just from my daily walks around campus, I average around 11,000 steps a day which makes this goal of mine super feasible!

2. Living 80/20

Now, the 80/20 rule isn’t entirely my own, but adopting this into my weekly routine has been an absolute game changer. Essentially, 80% of the time you eat a fairly clean diet, and the other 20% is reserved for “cheat” meals. By clean I just mean that I restrict my sugar and unhealthy carb intake, while focusing on more whole foods. For this, I mostly head over to Bplate where I can get my nutritious yet filling food to satisfy the 80% of my meals. Of course, being the curious foodie that I am, I make the most of my 20%! This usually consists of sweet treats from Cafe 1919 or just a Study cookie, as well as exploring L.A. restaurants during the weekend. Abiding by this rule of thumb has helped me so much when it comes to taking care of my body and enjoying all of the yummy food around me! 

3. Designing A Workout split

I’ve found that designing my own weekly workout plan has made it seem like less of a chore and more of something to look forward to. It perfectly fits your own schedule and fitness goals, which allows you to enjoy your workout more. Personally, I made a hybrid six-day weightlifting and cardio workout routine that makes me look forward to my workout every day. I feel like each day creates one big puzzle that needs to be completed in a particular order, and holds me accountable to get my daily task done. Resources like TikTok and Pinterest surely influenced my workout split, and there are so many other outlets to help you curate your own perfect routine!

4. The buddy system

Surrounding yourself with similar minded people makes sticking to your health and fitness goals much easier than doing it alone. Finding a buddy, whether it be your roommate or a friend, to hold each other accountable for abiding by your rules and pushing you to reach your goals is super important. It can be difficult to say “no” to going to grab ice cream every night, but having a friend who is on the same brainwave as you reduces FOMO. Finding an accountability buddy can be difficult, because you don’t want to feel like you’re holding others back from having fun, but trust me when I say that UCLA is full of like minded people.

5. grocery game changer

I know you may be thinking, “But I’m already paying for my meal plan”; however, getting a few of your own groceries makes a HUGE difference. I personally feel that the Hill food lacks in the protein department since it primarily consists of carbs, vegetables, and sugar. A few grocery staples that I get from Trader Joes for a decent price include greek yogurt, protein bars, chomps sticks, and protein cereal. All of these make me super full, while also being low calorie and easy to take to campus on busy days. Just getting these few grocery items every couple of weeks has seriously made my fitness journey at UCLA easier.

Between the nights out and socializing around food, it is so difficult to stay healthy in any college. Luckily for us, UCLA has a very widespread health culture that instills a sort of internal motivation to stay in your best shape (maybe it’s just our over-competitiveness). These five tips have majorly changed my healthy lifestyle game and hold me more accountable so that I don’t give up on my goals.

Hannah is a second-year Economics and Political Science major at UCLA, from Yuba City, California. She enjoys writing about a variety of topics from finance to up-and-coming trends! In her free time she loves baking, going to the beach, exploring the coffee shops of LA, and playing tennis.