Avoiding the Freshman 15

Ever had someone tell you don’t gain the freshman 15? Many freshman have been told this before they move into college dorms. Is it true that freshman will gain the whole 15 pounds during the freshman year?

Studies show that most freshman do not gain the full 15 pounds. Instead they gain around 3 to 10 pounds.  In college you have the choice to do what you want. No one is going to tell you what to do or eat.  This can be a wonderful thing, it can also be a negative thing. College comes with temptations and, food is definitely one of them.  You are free to eat whatever you want. Most of the time you don’t have time to cook something healthy. Instead you go down to the Lions Lair and grab a quick bite.  In the Dining Hall you can keep filling your plate with food until you are full.

It might be difficult to eat a healthy meal when you have the ice cream machine right in front of you. You eat fries and pizza instead of having a salad. Or those late at night study sessions when you have friends over to hangout and eat snacks all night.

Stress is another factor of gaining weight. College comes with big transitions and lots of homework. Students become stressed out and use food as a relaxing technique. You may be doing homework and eating a bag of chips or sitting in your dorm room bored and you go for the cake you saved. You are so busy with your new life that you forget to exercise.

There are many ways you can avoid gaining the freshman 15.  Try to avoid eating when you are stressed, studying, or watching TV. Many times when a person is eating while watching TV or studying, they do not realize how much they are eating. This can lead you to eat for hours while doing homework and not even realize it because you are using food as a relaxation technique.  When you are studying or watching TV try to do other things instead of grabbing a snack. For example while studying instead of eating a whole bag of chips listen to music instead. If you like to eat while relaxing try to keep healthy snacks in your dorm.

One of the biggest ways to avoid the freshman 15 is by staying active. Get involved in sports or clubs.  Go take a walk on campus with some friends and explore.

“When someone asks you to play Ultimate Frisbee or volleyball, do it! Stay active! ,” said Freshman Thomas Stanhouse.

Instead of taking the elevator every day, once in a while try to take the stairs.   You may not want to take the stairs because you have books in your hand or you are just worn out.  Motivate yourself by saying to yourself that you will be happy that you can still fit in your jeans.

“Walking up and down the hill from Snyder and Marmion and going to body boot camp at the gym will help keep off the weight, “ said Freshman Bianca Smith.

Sleep is a good way of keeping the freshman 15 away. I do not mean sleep all day and do nothing.  Getting at least seven hours of sleep every day will allow you to have energy to do activities throughout the day.

Don’t carry around small change every day, and bring your own healthy snacks so you won’t be tempted to get junk food from the vending machines.  Try to avoid soda and juice as much as you can, they tend to be high in calories. Carrying around a water bottle can help you avoid gaining weight because sometimes drinking water can take away the thought of being hungry and help you avoid buying a soda from the vending machine.

Don’t panic if you put on a one or two pounds. It’s normal to have some weight gain. Just make sure that you use it as a warning sign.  If you are gaining pounds don’t ignore it.  Analyze your eating habits. Make some healthy choices and don’t forget to add time for exercise in your plan.

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