Going to college, but dreading the “Freshman 15?” Believe it or not, it is avoidable. I can honestly say I gained the freshman 12. I did not quite reach the whole 15, but I was dangerously close. Even though I was studying nutrition, the buffet-style cafeterias at UNH got the better of me (not to mention, I had an unlimited meal plan. Thanks Mom and Dad!).
Unlimited food plans and endless buffet lines are not the only reasons college students gain weight while in school. Alcohol, dorm room snacks, stress, and lack of exercise are also reasons to consider when noticing those pounds slowly packing on.
There may be a time when you feel like your weight has just gotten out of control, but it’s important to realize that your health is just as important (if not more important) than your academics.
In the busy life of a college student, it is EXTREMELY important to give yourself some “you time.” Just put aside a half hour or an hour of your time to just re-collect yourself and regain that self-control.
Here are some helpful tips on how you can avoid the Freshman 15:
- Drink water in between alcoholic beverages.
- Eat in moderation. Chances are, whatever is on the menu will be there again at some other time.
- Go to the gym a few times a week.
- Walk the long route to the cafeteria.
- If you keep snacks in the dorm, put them in a place where you have to dig for them.
- Get involved in intramural sports or join a club to stay active.
- Look at the cafeteria menu before you arrive to plan your meals.
- Take a nutrition course to become more informed on what’s on your plate.
Even if you do gain the freshman 15 or even just the freshman 7, do not let it creep up to a higher number. Believe me, if you work hard and eat right, you will get your weight back down.
Good luck to all the new college students out there! Enjoy this time because it goes by fast!