Students exercise and diet to improve health

Many students choose to become healthier in a variety of ways by exercising or dieting or both.

Central Michigan University students and professors choose to exercise and stay conscious of their diets to boost self-esteem, curb stress and sleep easier.

Sophomore Stephen Cahoon normally exercises at the Student Activity Center with friends. The Southfield native said he exercises to feel good and burn energy.

"Besides walking to class, I don’t really do much," he said. "It’s a really good way to burn off that extra energy so you can go to bed easier and have a better sleep cycle.”

Students aren’t the only ones pumping iron or lifting weights. CMU economics professor Elena Quercioli said she exercises daily because she enjoys being physically healthy, and it puts her in a good mood.

“It makes me feel good about myself,” Quercioli said. “I started (exercising) because I was in a very stressful job before coming here ... But then it became more of a healthy habit, and, even if I’m not super stressed, I still like to exercise.”

Outside of exercise, Quercioli said she tries to be conscious of her diet. She avoids sugar, chocolate, candy and animal fat. Instead, she eats a lot of beans.

Sophomore Austin Asoklis of Shelby Township admits it can be hard to balance healthy dieting with a college lifestyle.

“I’ve been trying,” Asoklis said. “It’s kind of hard just being up here with all of the college foods. It’s kind of hard to get abs.”

Cahoon said he also tries to make healthier choices.

“Right after I work out in the Towers, I would try to get Mongolian, have a lot of broccoli, get a lot out of vegetables and stuff, and try to have more lean meats,” Cahoon said.

Grand Rapids sophomore Kristi Sterkenburg said she also tries to be more conscious of what her body takes in. She said she doesn’t eat a perfect diet, but she tries to eat plenty of fruits and vegetables and drink water.

“If I get a desert or something that I feel guilty about, I just tell myself I’ll run a little more at the gym," Sterkenburg said. "I think that it just balances each other out.”

St. Clair Shores freshman Brianna Hermann agrees it’s hard to balance health with a college lifestyle.

“It’s kind of like (you’re) under pressure with homework and class," Hermann said. “If you can go to the dining hall whenever, the food is right there. Choices being made aren’t probably the smartest, healthiest ones because you don’t have time (to think about it).”

Hermann said she doesn’t go to the gym but stays active by playing “Just Dance” on her Nintendo Wii with friends.

While some people plan to exercise more and become more active, it is easier said than done. Asoklis thinks a lot people who have a desire to exercise will start and quit because they don’t see any results.

“It takes a lot of time to see anything,” Asoklis said. “… It takes a couple of months before you can see any change, so just keep at it.”


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