It’s the beginning of January.  A new year, a new semester, and a few resolutions.  I am not typically a New Years Resolution type of person, but I always find the fitness and diet craze to be particularly interesting this time of year.  I dread my regular trips to the gym because I know it will be overly crowded with the temporarily motivated resolution makers, yet I get incredibly excited by the increased inventory for discounted workout clothes at T.J. Maxx.  But whether you have a resolution or not, the MBA experience has the tendency to add a few pounds.  The busy days, increased stress, and the plentiful high calorie snacks can get you if you aren’t careful.  Those extra pounds, or the “Goizueta Gut”, don’t have to be yours though.  Here are a few tips for staying healthy throughout the school year.

  1. Walk, Walk, and Walk Some More – Walking is probably the reason you felt more fit in college.  Emory’s campus is beautiful and very walkable.  Whether you are taking a break between classes or walking to get lunch, opt for a stroll instead of your car.  I really enjoy walking and chose to live very close to campus with the intent of walking to class each day.  Overall it has been a great experience.  Some times it’s a little hot out and this morning it was quite cold, but dressing appropriately can make the morning walk (~1 mile) a refreshing start to the day.
  2. Take the Stairs – The business school has 5 floors, plenty of IMG_2643stairs, and several elevators to avoid.  Most classes are on the 2nd and 3rd floors, but throughout the day you’ll find yourself all over the building from lunch in the Commons, a company presentation on the 5th floor, and a search for study rooms that take you up and down multiple floors.  It may be simple, but as you navigate, choose to take the stairs.  You’ll even be provided with a little entertainment during your trek in the way of faculty portraits and credentials decorating the walls.  Working the glutes a little will also help you work your mind better later!
  3. You Are What You Eat – Lunch can be an easy time to indulge.  With several friends having the same lunch break, IMG_2644it can be very tempting to scoot off campus for a quick burger, pizza, or some tacos.  But lunchtime doesn’t have to be your downfall.  Are you a culinary wiz at home or even an adequate sandwich assembler?  Consider packing your lunch.  The business school has two large refrigerators and several microwaves exclusively for MBA student use.  Many students can pile up lunches and snacks to get them through the day.  Still want to break out of the brown paper bag?  There are many healthy dining options, again within walking distance.  Emory Village is just a hop, skip and a jump away and hosts restaurant choices such as Panera, Zoe’s Kitchen, and Chipotle, all having delicious, nutritious, and calorie/fat conscious choices.  Campus Dining options are also abundant in the nearby Cox Hall, which houses a grill, sandwich bar, Asian Fusion, and salad and smoothie bar.
  4. Work It Out – Also within walking distance is the campus recreation center, nicknamed the WoodPEC.  The massive building contains a pool, basketball courts, tennis courts, a weight room and plenty of cardio machines.  If sports or self guided exercise aren’t your thing, consider taking one of many fitness classes.  The first and last week of every semester is a free class period when you can sample as many workout classes as you like.  Then you can purchase a $40 pass that gets you into anything from unlimited yoga or circuit training and kickboxing.rec_WPEC

The MBA experience can be crazy whether you do it in a single year or two.  You spend a lot of time, and a lot of money, on expanding your mind and viewpoints, but that is no excuse to expand your waistline!