The term “twenty-something” prompts a painful stereotype. With lipstick-stained front teeth, a dinosaur-like appetite and a perpetual longing for pizza and red wine, the body of a twenty-something female is one to admire for its perplexing state of affairs. Speaking as a woman at the peak of her twenties, I’ll be honest: My body is not a temple. It’s more like an abandoned trailer park on fire. That’s why I’ve written a health hack list to help twenty-something women like me find inexpensive ways to stay healthy, be chill and treat her body like a temple.
Every time I drink water, I pretend that I’m Tom Hanks in Cast Away
Before Starbucks vanilla lattes, cream soda floats, smoothies, whisky, wine and apple juice, there was water. It’s the hydrating liquid that has helped twenty-somethings digest bowlfuls of Golden Grahams, Nutella-covered pancakes and leftover pizza since the dawn of time. And the best part is that, unless you’re super fancy, it’s free from the tap. So drink it. Feel awesome. Enjoy the energizing flavour of liquid nothingness, for free! And if you’re not a water drinker, pretend that you’re Tom Hanks and you’re trapped on an island and extremely thirsty from dehydration. It works. Every. Single. Time.
Iron pills and kale are the answer to everything
I’m not a vegetarian, but I don’t eat meat because I’m cheap. It’s astonishing I have the strength to type right now, but somehow I keep going. With the added strength of my iron pills, I’ve found alternative ways to eat like a regular, iron-fuelled human. Namely, by eating handfuls of kale, spinach and other green stuff to maintain enough stamina to jaywalk home after the bar. Don’t underestimate the power of green, ladies.
I work out in a staircase because the gym smells weird
I hope I’m not alone when I say this, but the gym is weird. It’s filled with expensive futuristic athletic wear and men who could easily eat a streetcar for brunch. It also smells like stranger-sweat: a pungent, aromatic combination of strangers who sweat in close proximity to one another to produce something I can only describe as “funk” (and not the good kind of funk).
To avoid smelly, awkward gym experiences, I found a new way to exercise: I pretend my condo is the sinking Titanic, Jack is already dead, and I have to sprint up the staircase to escape the imaginary rising water. Boom–a thirty-minute workout in sweatpants, and nobody is around. That’s winning in my books.
I wake up disgustingly early
I don’t sleep much. I stay up in a thought-loop, thinking about the day ahead of me and everything I need to finish, or people I need to see, or topics I want to write about. There’s not enough time in the day to do everything. That’s why I wake up before the rest of Toronto hits the snooze button, so I can get ahead with a few extra hours and savour a cup of coffee, read a few headlines and catch up on my emails. I don’t know if this will really benefit your body, but it’s probably good for your twenty-something mantra. The early bird is your secret best friend to get shit done.
I fucking love walking in Toronto
A monthly TTC pass is a million dollars. Isn’t that a good enough reason to walk everywhere? Oh, and I guess you burn a few calories, too. The best part? It’s totally free.
I’m not ashamed to buy chewable vitamins
I guess it depends on your poison, but if you’re looking for a quick-fix vitamin blast, I recommend the Flintstones fruity chewable multivitamin. I know they’re for kids, but nobody will judge you for buying them. You’re twenty-something; they’ll understand. (Full disclosure: my piss is neon. I feel like a glorified superhero.)