Wellness finds to live better, not perfectly
What if you had $1,000 to spend on your health?
Welcome to Wellness Diaries. In this series, we give readers $1,000 to splurge on any product, service, or experience that goes toward their health or wellness.
This month, we had a very collegiate Wellness Diaries (to complement our Healthiest Colleges ranking), and we awarded four college students $1,000 each to spend on wellness.
Back when I was in college, I had NO idea what wellness looked like, and the industry was far from what it is today. Binge drinking, dieting and excessively working out with the singular purpose to be a size double zero, and scrubbing your face with St. Ives Apricot Scrub were common rituals among my peers.
That’s why I was moved and humbled to see how thoughtful and informed each of our winners’ selections were. College can be an expensive and challenging time to prioritize your wellbeing, and while a lot of healthy practices are free, some assists come at a cost. These students did their research, and they surfaced products and experiences unique to their wellness journeys and stages in life. And most of these picks aren’t unique to a university experience. There’s something here for everyone, and I can’t wait for you to read them.
Melanie, editor at Nessie Sightings
Meet our winners!
🎓 New York University drama major Sònia Victoria Werner: “I had a pre-diabetes scare last year and vowed to take control of my health and the things I’m eating. A key part to health and wellness for me is consuming and cooking healthier meals, but the barrier to buying those foods is money. Why the heck are the cheapest big box of raspberries in NYC $6?!”
🎓 San Diego State University television/film/media major Matthew Evans: “I just spent two weeks in hospital with a collapsed lung and I’m now in recovery, so I would probably put it toward my medical bills! If not that, it would be on lung training products like spirometers or a device to measure my blood oxygen levels. Likewise, hospital time had a big impact on my mental health so I would consider buying products for my self-care.”
🎓 University of Miami exercise physiology major Korlan Amirkhanova: “There is always a misconception that being an athlete means you are the healthiest person in the world. However, during my professional sports path, I encountered many difficulties, like developing an ED. Gladly, I found the help that I needed at the right time, which made me want to become a nutritionist-dietitian, so I can help other people to build healthy relationships with food.”
🎓 New York University business major Katie Cheng: “I would spend the money on strength training/recovery accessories and subscriptions for mindfulness and mental health. As a current student athlete, I often have to go directly from practice to classes without the ability to stretch or do muscle recovery.”
💸 Check out a preview of each of their picks below.
Carrington Farms chia seeds
I freakin’ LOVE chia seeds and love adding them to my water, smoothies, everything for Omega 3s and fatty acids. I also want to learn to make chia pudding. These organic ones are sourced and sold by a small business—what’s not to love?
Thrive Market membership
A big part of nutrition for me is buying healthy foods and Thrive gets me the most bang for my buck (hello price matching!!)! However, with limited funds for groceries, I often have to skip out on fresh items I love, like fresh fruits and probiotic yogurts. With this membership, I’d buy everything from fresh fruits and veggies to frozen items that’ll last me throughout the semester.
Spa day with Heather
The first reason “why” is that I’ve never had a spa day before! I’m also looking for a sustainable massage practice to work into my routine. I have had back and skin issues for as long as I can remember, and this deal is absolutely stellar on Groupon. I’d love to try this place out and enjoy a massage, facial, and wonderful experience (and hey, champagne is a plus! Please note I’m 21 LOL)
Also, on a more personal note, my wellness journey would not be complete without thanking the woman who brings me so much joy and tranquility on the daily: My lovely girlfriend Heather. I’d love to enjoy a spa day along with her, to celebrate a new beginning of wellness and mindfulness practices together. Practicing mindfulness and gratitude with and for her would make my mind, heart, and soul soar.
Fingertip blood oxygen monitor
Recovering from surgery after a collapsed lung means that I am constantly anxious about the condition of my own body. After all, how do I know if my lung is healing if I can’t see it? A blood oxygen monitor is a way for me to see if my body is processing oxygen properly, thus easing my mind and helping my recovery!
Training a lung is a lot like training for a marathon. You start off slow and steady, then build your way up to the full distance. Using a breathing trainer helps me get my lung used to deep breaths, so that I can prepare it for the future and ease its recovery.
Aromatherapy oil diffuser
Having more control over the quality of air would have such a significant impact on the quality of my recovery from surgery. When trying to heal a lung in this dry San Diego heat, there are few things that can make as much of a difference as a diffuser and humidifier.
Ceremonial matcha powder
I switched from coffee to matcha for the last three months. I noticed that drinking coffee raises my anxiety, and I feel crushed after a few hours of having coffee. That is why I enjoy matcha. I get some caffeine, but not the stress or anxiety.
Casper Glow Light
My cousin swears by this lamp. She says it helps her wind down and prepare for a smooth wakeup. Honestly, I don’t enjoy turning my lights on or opening my blinds for the first hour, so I think this smart lamp will be handy.
Adidas sports bra
I love working out. A big factor is a comfortable and supportive sports bra. So far, Adidas sports apparel has never disappointed me!
Bombas running ankle socks
I run a lot each week for practice and at meets, so I definitely look to invest in quality socks that won’t give me blisters or make my feet feel extremely raw afterwards. I currently have a few pairs of running socks that have holes in them, so I’m looking for some replacements. I’ve heard great things about Bombas from teammates and coaches, and reading Brooklee’s article on The Nessie website made me want to try out these socks even more!
Lululemon The Mat
For home workouts, stretching, and morning yoga, I would love to have a yoga mat to keep in my apartment. I currently have one that I bought for my dorm last year, but it slips and slides quite a bit, so I’m looking to get a higher quality one. I often forget to stretch at night despite it making such a big difference when I wake up in the morning, so having a new mat would definitely give me that extra motivation to do so.
Classic Crocs clog
I love wearing Crocs after practice because they let my feet breathe but give me enough support to walk around or bike home. I left my pair back at home so would love to get one for this school year.
Stay tuned for our next Wellness Diaries! If there’s a community you think is deserving of this giveaway opportunity, just hit reply.
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