My first day of University!

How I Handled My First Day of College

I’m currently writing this at the end of my third week, and I must say that, on the whole, it has been a pretty good experience so far! My first day went really well which surprised me because, in the month leading up to it, I really psyched myself out. I was so worried that I wouldn’t make any friends, that the work would be too hard, that I wouldn’t be able to adjust to the new environment. Safe to say that none of my worries have happened! What a relief! I know lots of you out there will be in the same boat as I was, scared to go to university, wondering what it’ll be like. So here is an hour by hour look at my first day of college.

My first day of University!
So I am officially a university student!!

Timetable For My First Day

8.28am Wake up and shower. I don’t really spend too long getting ready in the morning, just shower, throw some clothes on and brush my hair. Unfortunately, I am too lazy to spend any more time than that. As long as I look decent I don’t mind. I envy those of you who can put the time and effort into looking good in the morning!

9 am Breakfast time! I had some muesli with tinned peaches and a hot chocolate. Breakfast has always been my favourite meal of the day so I always make sure to give myself plenty of time to enjoy it.

9.30am Left for the university. It takes ten minutes to get to class, and the walk was completely uphill, so I was pretty tired when I arrived!!

9.40am Arrived at the university. I expected to start chatting to people and make a few friends before my lecture started. This didn’t happen. Instead, I just stood there awkwardly. Not a great start!

10 am I was expecting an easy lecture….nope! Political science first and the lecturer went straight into it.  I found I really had to focus to keep up, and didn’t get all the notes down. The lecturer made it clear that he was taking note of those who was contributing, so I tried to get involved in the debate. I came out of that lecture feeling very overwhelmed, but I did really enjoy it!!

11 am Study Time! I went to the library to catch up on the notes I didn’t get and to clarify things I didn’t understand, so I felt caught up by the time I finished. Really enjoyed working in the library, especially since I didn’t really have time to go back to the hall between my lectures.

12 pm My second lecture was anthropology. Again I didn’t talk to anyone before we went into the lecture theater, which was disappointing. However, I ended up chatting for a bit to the guy I was sitting beside, who was quite nice. Anthropology seems quite chilled so I am looking forward to it. Left that class feeling better!

1 pm Back to the hall for lunch. It was such a relief to return to the hall amongst people I knew. I hadn’t seen any of my friends while at university so we all caught up on how our day had been so far.

2.10 pm My final lecture of the day was International Relations. I finally had a breakthrough in terms of my search for friends, in which I got to know the girl beside me pretty well.

3 pm Back to the library to do some study and make sure I understood all of the content well. I love the comfort of the library and although it is a bit busy in the afternoons, it is a great place to get some study done.

4 pm After finishing off my study at the library, I headed over to the gym. I only had time for a short workout, but it was so good to push myself.

5 pm Back to the hall for tea. As usual, the line was long, which gave us plenty of time to catch up.

6 pm No one had any study yet so we decided to watch a movie and just chill.

10 pm Headed back to my room and got ready for bed. Since I am in a long distance relationship, I always spend a few hours before bed texting my boyfriend. This gives us plenty of time to talk properly since we are both too busy during the day. Anyone else in a long distance relationship? Comment down below, I would love some tips on how to manage our relationship!

12 am Sleep time

It is crazy how quickly you adjust to a rhythm. I have loved my experiences so far. Looking back now, I find it so strange that I was so worried about going to university. I have an amazing group of friends, I love the stuff I am learning and I love my new city. Bring on the rest of the year!

My first day of University!
So I am officially a university student!!

Cheers Alura xx

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10 Little Ways to Be Healthier in College

We all struggle with living a healthy life once we get to university.  During the day we fill our days with schoolwork and socialising, which leaves little time to hit the gym. Plus as fun as it is to go out at nights, your sleep and health can suffer. To avoid the weight piling on, I’ve compiled a list of ten little ways to be healthier in college. While these tips alone will not turn you into a glowing fitness guru, they can keep you feeling good and stop the weight from piling on. Little by little, a little becomes a lot. So try and incorporate these things into your life and you’ll be feeling healthier and happier!

1: Give Yourself Time in the Mornings

As much as we might want to set our alarm clocks as late as possible to give ourselves maximum sleep time, all that stress in the morning is not good for us! Sit down and plan out exactly how long you need to get ready in the morning, and then add an extra ten minutes to that.

Health Hack

While it might be tempting to immediately switch to a 5am start, if you are unused to this, then you will be left feeling sluggish and tired. Not a great way to begin a healthy habit. Instead, try and push back the time you wake up by fifteen minutes each day till you reach your prime wake time.

2: Get out of bed

It might be tempting to lie in bed for ages, repeatedly snoozing your alarm clock, but this does not make getting out of bed any better. Instead try and get up the moment your alarm goes off. Some people find leaving their phone on the other side of the room to help this, however I have got used to getting up at my first alarm so I do not need this, but by all means, go ahead if it works for you.

Health Hack

Try using an alarm clock which monitors your sleep cycle to wake you up at your best point. I use the Sleep Cycle Alarm Clock App by Northcube AB which I have really been enjoying. They also have a sleep analysis function so you can see how well you slept. (By the way I have not been sponsored to write about this app or anything, it is genuinely an app I have been using for several months and really like.)

3: Start the day with water

Since we are not drinking water during the night, we wake up dehydrated, which is not a great start to the day. Try to fix this by leaving a large glass of water or a drink bottle beside your bed. That way, you can start hydrating once you get moving. I found this difficult to start off with, cause I generally did not like drinking water in the mornings. However I just kept at it, and now I crave water when I wake up in the mornings.

Health Hack

You don’t have to try and drink a lot of water right away. In fact this can actually be bad for you if you immediately try and drink a tonne of water. Instead try and continually sip water throughout the morning,

4: Eat A Good Breakfast

This one I have really struggled with since coming to university because of the choices available. At home I used to set aside time to make porridge with chia seeds and almonds, which I would then add almond milk, frozen raspberries and Greek yogurt to. It was delicious! Here, I have instead gone for the muesli option, which I add trim milk and canned apricots to. Scout out the options and choose one which is low in sugar, high in protein and leaves you feeling full. Coffee by itself does not count!

Health Hack

An average breakfast is better than no breakfast. If your college only offers toast, choose a grainy bread and use a low sugar spread. While peanut butter can be good for this, I personally am not a fan so I generally use vegemite instead. Stay away from the Nutella!

5: Incorporate easy exercise

Try and find ways to get a little extra exercise into your day without going crazy. Take the long way to class. Do calf raises while you are standing (I often do this when I am brushing my teeth.) Maybe make it a rule that before you leave for class each morning you do 100 star jumps. I am even a massive fan of fidgeting, because it is such an easy way to add movement to your day. Finding little ways to add exercise to your day can really make a difference, especially on days where you have a hectic schedule.

Health Hack

The step counting app on my phone is a great motivator for me. Check on it regularly to see if you have cracked the recommended 10,000 steps a day, and if not, try and go for a short walk around the block, or even just march on the spot in your dorm room.

6: Have Snacks Available

This is one I am terrible at. I never feel like going to the grocery store and spending money I don’t have on food, nor can I be bothered taking fruit from the dining hall at mealtimes. Then I get hungry between meals which can lead to overeating and then feeling terrible after. Don’t do this! Grain crackers, fruit, nuts, plain popcorn,

Health Hack

I have a notorious sweet tooth. While I do not recommend stocking up on hundreds of chocolate bars to gorge yourself on, I am an advocate for having dark chocolate in my dorm room. Not only does this allow me to satisfy my sweet cravings without ingesting a lot of sugar, it also means that I don’t go for heavy desserts or junk food options when they are available because I know I have chocolate back in my dorm.

7: Plan to workout

You schedule your college classes. So why not schedule in a workout. Sit down the night before and look at what times you are able to workout. I understand this involves a bit of planning, but it is the key to successfully fitting in a great workout. This can involve a bit of work on your part, either by going in the morning or rearranging the times you usually study, but it is totally possible. Try and encourage your friends to attend fun group exercise classes, or to workout with you. Not only does this way combine exercise and socialising but it holds you accountable for the times you’d much rather stay in your room watching Netflix.

Health Hack

Aim for at least some exercise every day. It doesn’t have to be a two hour long bike ride, sometimes you can only fit in a short session and that’s totally okay! HIIT training is great for this because you only have to exercise for a small amount of time, but you go hard during that time. Using a skipping rope is another fantastic option for when you don’t have much time. For a person my weight, I only need to skip for 12 minutes a day to burn 100 calories!

8: Always have vegetables on your plate

I always make sure to have veggies on my plate at lunch and dinner. Sometimes there are already vegetables in the main option the dining hall is serving, but regardless I like to add salad to my plate. Not only does it help you get that recommended serving of vegetables in each day, but it also makes your plate look better.

Health Hack

Try and load your plate up with vegetables before you add anything else. Vegetables are better for you and contain less calories than the other options, so try and fill half your plate with veggies. When having salad, go for the cucumber and tomato slices over the iceberg lettuce which has no nutritional value.

9: Leave the dessert options as a treat

I know how tempting it can be to just go for that slice of chocolate cake. Everyone else is eating it. Some people even take a second helping. It is okay to indulge occasionally, but this should not be a regular thing. Leave it as a treat. For me, I allow myself to have a treat in the dining hall three times a week. This is probably still more than I should be doing, however if I have had a few really good days where I have done a good amount of exercise, ate healthy, drunk heaps of water and got in my recommended hours of sleep then its totally okay to indulge in the dessert….just don’t go crazy!

Health Hack

Go for the healthier option. Choose desserts that have an element of heath to them such as fruit or dairy based desserts over heavy carb options. Apple crumble, fruit tarts or vanilla ice cream are much better option than chocolate cake or brownie. If you really must indulge in something unhealthy, go for a smaller portion and eat slowly to savour it!

10: Go to bed at a reasonable hour

It happens to all of us. We begin messaging friends, or on YouTube or finishing that assignment last minute and next thing you know, its 2am and you have to be up again at 7am. Try to get the recommended 6-8hrs of sleep each night, and make sure you know what time you need to be asleep by to ensure this. Keep an eye on the time, or even set a timer so you know when you need to start getting ready for bed.

Health Hack

I know that I need more sleep than most people, so I aim to be in bed by midnight each night, which gives me a full eight hours. Listen to your body! If you are feeling especially tired that night, make sure to get to bed a bit earlier. Your body will thank you in the morning.

So there we have it! Ten little ways by which to make you feel happier and healthier each day. Let me know in the comments if there are any other small things that you do each day to keep healthy.

A must read list of items that I actually brought to college

My College Packing List

In the months leading up to university, I read a lot of college packing lists on other blogs. I was so excited to begin purchasing all these “must have” items. The truth is though, you are a broke college student. You don’t have the money to invest in this sort of stuff, especially when you don’t actually need it. On the other hand, there are some things that life would be very difficult if you happened to leave them behind. So read on below to see what I packed for college.

A must read list of items that I actually brought to college
Here is a list of everything I brought to university

NB: I flew to college which means that I had to purchase a lot of stuff once I got to my university, hence why some items have (buy up there) beside them. Depending on whether you have these things or not, and how you are getting to university you can choose whether you pay attention to these things. Also my dorm provides communal mini fridges, TVs and microwaves among other things which is why they aren’t listed.

Must Bring to University

Living

  • Bed Linen (should buy up there but going to bring with me)
  • 2 Towels
  • Mugs
  • Teaspoons
  • Tea towels
  • Laundry powder  (buy up there)
  • Headphones
  • Laundry bag-would recommend basket
  • First Aid Kit-just threw together some plasters and painkillers
  • Torch-should get for emergencies but haven’t got round to it.
  • Coat hangers – I brought twelve but I needed at least another 5

Documents

  • Passport photos
  • Passport or driving licence
  • National Insurance number
  • CV and references
  • Bank account details
  • calendar
  • Other university documents
  • Exam certificates

Studying

  • Diary/planner – turns out my uni has free ones. Still like mine though.
  • A pad of lined paper – for making notes/doing drafts etc (buy up there)
  • A4 folders (buy up there)
  • Pens, pencils, paper, files, highlighters (buy up there)
  • Scissors (buy up there)
  • Sticky tape (buy up there)
  • Stapler, hole punch (buy up there)
  • Sticky labels (buy up there)
  • Post-it notes (buy up there)
  • Paper clips (buy up there)
  • White Tac – so it doesn’t mark the walls (buy up there)

Sports gear

  • Jump rope
  • Stretch matt
  • Cords
  • Small knee cord
  • Raincoat
  • Umbrella
  • Sports shoes

Bathroom

  • Basket for shower supplies (buy up there)
  • Box of tissues (buy up there)
  • Toothbrush and toothpaste
  • Soap –  (bottle) soap is probably better. If you’re sharing bathrooms then it’s easier to transport
  • Showergel (buy up there)
  • Shampoo/Conditioner (buy up there)
  • Nail clippers
  • Deodorant-choose roll on cause aerosol cans aren’t always allowed.
  • Hairbrush
  • Comb
  • Razor
  • Lip balm

Electrical

  • Computer and/or laptop
  • USB “pen drive” – Generally just use Google Drive but good for backups
  • Mobile and charger
  • Camera
  • Headphones 
  • Multi plug adaptor/extension lead – Used this so I can charge my phone beside my bed!

Clothing

  • Dressing gown
  • Slippers (handy for mornings)
  • T-shirts
  • Jumpers/hoodies (bring more up before winter)
  • Sweat pants
  • Underwear (as many as possible)
  • Socks (as many as possible)
  • Shoes
  • Jandals- for showers and for beach
  • Swimwear-bikini and sports togs
  • Ball gowns/eveningwear – for the Freshers’ Ball. Bring up later in year
  • Dresses
  • Heels
  • Cap
  • Sunglasses

Room Deco

  • Posters
  • Photos of family and friends-print heaps!
  • Wall hanging
  • A fluffy blanket
  • Fairy lights
  • Pins for corkboard

Miscellaneous

  • Chocolate-I have a huge sweet tooth
  • Snacks-for when the dining hall isn’t open
  • Extra storage – better to get to room to see if you need any
  • Travel bag- to put things in when going home for the weekend
  • Earplugs
  • Safety pins

Female specific items

  • Hair Ties/clips
  • Make up (eye shadow, mascara, lip stick/gloss, eyeliner, foundation, etc)
  • Jewellery Boxes
  • Jewellery-this was mainly necklaces and earrings for me
  • Moisturiser
  • Nail polish-I went a bit crazy with this and brought my ten favourites but I love painting my nails
  • Hair dryer/straightners
  • Tampons/pads
A must read list of items that I actually brought to college
Here is a list of everything I brought to university

Is there anything that you think I have missed out? What sort of things would you not have thought to bring which are included?

    

 

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