It's a new year and a new semester, and that means one thing — you've probably already broken a New Year's resolution. But even if you've skipped the gym, spent $60 on drinks in one night, downed an entire order of Pokey Stix and then slept with someone you didn't know on Jan. 2, there are simple ways to get back into the game. Let's think of some of the most common New Year's resolutions: exercise, lose weight, save money and learn something new. And now let's find creative solutions to keep up your good-intentioned resolutions all semester long while at the No. 1 party school …
Goal No. 1: Exercise
Of course, everyone is already thinking about (cue scary music) spring break. The SERF will get really crowded a couple weeks before the weeklong getaway — and the Monday after, it will be dead empty. But instead of beating yourself up for not going to the gym every day, consider all of the things you do during the day that can add up to a workout. I played around on the calorie calculators at www.healthstatus.com and found that I can burn 230 calories by having sex for an hour. If you feel guilty about hooking up with someone over the weekend, just think of the great workout you got. And there are even some websites that will tell you how many calories you burn in different positions.
I can run for 25 minutes at six miles per hour and burn the same amount of calories, but I would much rather forego the gym for the bedroom. This website also says that I can burn the same amount of calories brushing my teeth for 100 minutes. OK, the calculator asks for your weight, but maybe it should ask for your age, too, because I would hope that moving my right arm back and forth for just 40 minutes more wouldn't be equivalent to having sex. And I have an electric toothbrush, so that doesn't require much effort at all. Regardless, having sex is exercise, and you don't have to show your student ID to do it — or pay $10 for classes.
Goal No. 2: Lose weight
Since cooking healthy meals at home every night is not going to realistically happen, why not take just cut back on the greasy food at 2 a.m? Remember — the "beer belly" comes from eating Qdoba or Ian's Pizza at bartime, not from that glass of Spotted Cow.
But for all those crazies who pay attention to things like carbs and calories, wine and hard alcohol is obviously better than beer. But Miller Lite wins for one of the "healthiest" beers, with 96 calories per 12 ounces and 3.2 grams of carbs. For those wandering the house parties, Milwaukee's Best has 128 calories and 11.4 grams of carbs. Leinenkugel's loses for having more calories and carbs than any beverage should have (this is all according to the trusty website www.beer100.com). But the biggest loser of them all is Coke. I am addicted to Coke and have spent many hours of my life taste-testing Coke products at the World of Coca-Cola Museum in Atlanta, but with 140 calories, 39 grams of carbs and 39 grams of sugar, it is a dirty, dirty drink.
Goal No. 3: Save money
This is an easy one — well, it seems easy: alcohol and cigarettes. Think of how rich you would be if you didn't spend tons of money going out each weekend. Smokers can go to www.healthstatus.com and calculate how much they have spent on cancer sticks. How much money do you spend in a regular night at the bar? If you get one less drink each night, that's $5 a night, maybe about $10 to $15 a week, and $40 to $60 a month. Also, pay attention to drink specials, especially during the week. There are drink specials too numerous to list at every bar. You can also save money while drinking at home and lower yourself to the level of boxed wine and cheap champagne. Instead of expensive wine, get the Franzia; instead of expensive champagne, get J. Roget, people. Only the best. Don't skimp on the beer, though — cheap beer tastes horrible unless it's being chugged during beer pong before a 10 a.m. football game.
Goal No. 4: Learn something new
Maybe you have big hopes to learn how to play the guitar or the piano or you want to join a new sport or pick up a foreign language. But since it is more likely that college students use their free time to get drunk rather than study, you can take your typical college student plans and turn them into an educational experience. Try a new restaurant, like a German dinner at the Essenhaus, or a new bar over the weekend (The Opus has really good chocolate fondue and awesome cocktails) or a new sex position from those crazy books at Urban Outfitters. Or you can make an educational experience over the weekend by gathering some friends and going to a strip club (let me tell you, I learned a lot) or actually going to one of those pleasure parties (I've never heard so much hype about vibrating cock rings) or hiring a male stripper (Exotic George, anyone?) for your house party.
Maybe these New Year's resolutions aren't the most respectable, but we have four years (or more, for the lucky ones) when we can get away with resolutions like these. But for good measure, everyone should try to be healthy, get some sleep, go to class and sit in the quiet section of the library.
Aubre Andrus is a senior double majoring in journalism and communication arts. Her New Year's resolution is to enjoy her last semester in college. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.