The countdown has begun. The white tents have started appearing and the campus has begun to buzz with excitement. The first Boulevard of the year is just around the corner.
Come Friday, the campus will be a sea of red, white and blue. Music will be blaring from tents, there will be alumni and fans everywhere, and every moment will be documented thanks to Flash Photography and sorority girls trying to get “candid” photos for Instagram. The Boulevard is a unique SMU experience and one that both alumni and students alike cherish. While the Boulevard is a fun experience, how a person handles it can effect their health.
Each weekend of the fall semester, students flirt with dehydration and overheating to spend every second they can Boulevarding. Often times undergraduate students have been consuming alcohol, did not have a balanced meal beforehand, and are not consuming the proper amount of water. The combination of those three elements, plus standing and walking around for hours at a time, can have a negative effect on your body and health. One trip down the Boulevard and you can see who has overestimated themselves, while they vomit in a trashcan or are being carried home by their friends.
If you are going to be drinking on the Boulevard, it is important to hydrate before, during and after you consume alcohol. Alcohol is a diuretic, which means that it encourages your body to lose more water then it takes on. This means that drinking alcohol naturally dehydrates the human body. This is why you have to urinate more than normal when you’ve been drinking.
Eat a balanced meal beforehand. You’re going to be on your feet for hours and may end up drinking more alcohol then you think. Protein and some healthy carbohydrates will keep you going throughout the night. If you do get hungry or feel like you’ve over served yourself, never fear. Almost every tent has food that you can eat. Everything from In n’ Out, Canes Chicken and Torchy’s Tacos can be found on the Boulevard. Eat throughout the day to stay alert and avoid becoming fatigued.
Even if you aren’t drinking and did eat a balanced breakfast, spending hours out in the Texas heat can wear your body down. Standing out in the sun with thousands of your closest friends will cause you to sweat more then you think – especially if you’re not used to the Texas heat. To combat this you need to drink water. It is so important to replenish your body to avoid dehydration, fainting or getting sick.
Be safe and be smart on the Boulevard this weekend when SMU takes on the Baylor Bears. Pony Up Mustangs!