Staff editorial: Not so sleepless nights

Caffeine and all-nighters just seem natural to many students during midterms. It enables us to stay awake for the maximum time possible the day before an exam.

There are, however, healthier and more effective alternatives to sleep deprivation and caffeine injection. A few simple changes would make many of these crammers’ lives more enjoyable.

The first option is to start studying earlier, but this advice is not applicable to everyone. For most people, tests are now only a few days away.

Even so, the lure of procrastination is overwhelmingly appealing when dates for exams are a month away. So for those of you who need a little pressure to inspire studying, here are a few tips for the 11th hour.

Instead of following the inclination to sacrifice sleep and daily jogs, remember that naps and exercise will actually revolutionize your study routine and allow your brain to learn more.

Even a power nap can recharge your batteries and help commit those flash cards to long-term memory.

Exercising has to be more appealing than spending the day in Richter and is proven to increase your levels of serotonin, which boost focus and memory.

If climbing away on a Stairmaster is unthinkable during crunch time, then adjusting eating habits is a change that requires no time or effort. Instead of downing that seventh Red Bull, have a Vitamin Water “Energy,” which is loaded with Vitamin C and just enough caffeine to avoid withdrawal symptoms.

During a midnight run to the C-Store, pass the Doritos and donuts and make your way to the healthy sections. Protein and fiber-rich foods improve focus and provide sustainable energy without a sugar crash.

Making healthier changes is about going back to the basics. Taking naps, eating healthy and exercising may seem unthinkable at 3 a.m., but if you incorporate these changes in advance, your GPA will appreciate it.

Editorials represent the majority view of The Miami Hurricane editorial staff.

February 28, 2010


The Miami Hurricane

Student newspaper at the University of Miami

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The Miami Hurricane is the student newspaper of the University of Miami in Coral Gables, Fla. The newspaper is edited and produced by undergraduate students at UM and is published weekly on Thursdays during the regular academic year.