The Freshman 15 is Real

The Freshman 15 is Real

These Tips Will Help You Avoid It
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If you’re setting out for college soon or already in the midst of your college education, then chances are, you’ve already heard about the so-called Freshman 15. It’s a reference to the amount of weight many students gain in their first year of college, often attributed to a lack of supervision, a bottomless supply of food in the dining hall and maybe a bit too much revelry on the weekends. Lots of new college students consider this weight gain simply inevitable. They abandon their routine when they move into the dorm.

But if you’re committed to your health, it’s totally possible to avoid the Freshman 15. You might just have to take the path less traveled in order to do so. If you’re not interested in putting on these extra pounds as a university newbie, then follow a few simple tips.

Back Away From the Beer Can

With a party every weekend — or, rather, multiple parties all week long — it’s incredibly easy to drink your calories. Even if you don’t down beers or mixed drinks, a college campus is a minefield of other high-calorie sips, such as soda and sugary coffee beverages.

Resolve to drink mostly water and only indulge in soda, juice or an adult beverage as the occasional treat. This way, you'll have more calories to put toward your meals — and that fuel is essential in keeping you healthy under academic stress.

Catch Some Zzz’s

If you have a paper due in the morning, and you've barely typed a sentence, you're going to be tempted to pull an all-nighter. Don't. It's crucial that you stay on top of your schedule so that you can get enough sleep. Believe it or not, the number of hours you sleep each night can directly affect not only your metabolism but also your cravings for junk food. Make sure that you snooze for at least six hours each night — even if it means turning in an assignment late. Your waistline will thank you for it.

Take Advantage of a Free Gym

When you leave the comfort of a college campus, you’ll be expected to pay for your gym membership. As long as you’re a student, take full advantage of the perks that come with it. Head to the gym on a regular basis — at least three or four times a week — to offset any freshman year weight gain.

Not a big gym rat? Go for a run outside, join an intramural sports team or find another way to get active. That way, even if you overdo it on snacks, you’ll have the safety net of a calorie-burning workout.

Don’t Skip Breakfast

Maybe, as a high school student, you got into the habit of skipping breakfast. A few extra precious minutes of sleep seemed more important. But now that you’re officially an adult, it’s time to start taking ownership of your health, including the way you eat.

Breakfast is essential in getting your body ready for the day. It signals your metabolism to start working for the day and burning calories. Don’t skip it and overeat at lunch. Head to the cafe and have a healthy breakfast like fruit and yogurt or a veggie omelet.

Play It Cool in the Dining Hall

Speaking of the dining hall, while it’s your main source of nourishing food, it’s also where you can do a lot of damage. Since most colleges allow you to make unlimited visits to the hot food line, it’s easy to indulge in excess calories. Avoid falling into this trap — instead, go into each meal with a plan. Look at the menu ahead of time and select a healthy dish, or hit the salad bar before you do anything else. If you fill up on greens and veggies, you’ll be less likely to binge on treats from the dessert station.

Focus on Body Composition, Not Just Weight

The Freshman 15 obviously refers to a specific weight, but it’s not all about pounds. Your health depends more on what those pounds contain than the weight itself. If you gain 15 pounds of fat, that’s obviously going to be detrimental to your health, whereas packing on 15 pounds of muscle is a positive change. So focus on body composition — i.e., fat versus muscle mass — when you’re assessing how you’re doing with your freshman-year health journey. Eat lots of fruits, veggies and lean protein to stay strong.

With these tips for staying healthy in your toolbox, the only thing you’ll gain as a freshman is knowledge. Just make sure that you exercise on a regular basis, don’t go too hard on the weekends and start at the salad bar when you go to the dining hall. You might leave freshman year even fitter than you came into it!

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50 Things To Be Happy About

It's the little things in life.
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It is always easier to pick out the negatives in life. We tend to dwell on them and drown out the happy moments. I asked a friend to tell me something that made them happy. They sarcastically laughed at my question then thought about it for a minute. Nothing. But they could easily come up with things that made them unhappy. Then I read them my list, and they were smiling and laughing in agreement the whole time. There are so many more things to be happy and laugh about than we realize. After all- it's the little things in life that can mean the most! Here are 50 things that make me happy. What are your 50?

  1. The first warm day of the year
  2. Laughing so hard your abs ache
  3. Freshly washed sheets
  4. Looking through old pictures
  5. The smell of a coffee shop
  6. Eating cookie dough
  7. Reading a bible verse that perfectly fits your current situation
  8. Seeing someone open a gift you got them
  9. Eating birthday cake
  10. A shower after a long day
  11. Marking something off your to-do list
  12. Drinking ice cold water on a really hot day
  13. Dressing up for no reason
  14. Breakfast food
  15. Being able to lay in bed in the morning
  16. Finding something you love at the store
  17. And it’s on sale
  18. Cute elderly couples
  19. When a stranger compliments you
  20. Getting butterflies in your stomach
  21. Taking a nap
  22. Cooking something delicious
  23. Being lost for words
  24. Receiving a birthday card in the mail
  25. And there's money in it
  26. Finally cleaning your room
  27. Realizing how fortunate you are
  28. Waking up from a nightmare and realizing it wasn't real
  29. Fresh fruit
  30. Walking barefoot in the grass
  31. Singing along to a song in the car
  32. Sunrises
  33. Sunsets
  34. Freshly baked cookies with a glass of milk
  35. Summertime cookouts
  36. Feeling pretty
  37. Looking forward to something
  38. Lemonade
  39. Comfortable silences
  40. Waking up in the middle of the night and realizing you have more time to sleep
  41. Surviving another school year
  42. The cold side of the pillow
  43. The smell of popcorn
  44. Remembering something funny that happened
  45. Laughing to yourself about it
  46. Feeling weird about laughing to yourself
  47. Printed photographs
  48. Wearing a new outfit
  49. The sound of an ice cream truck
  50. Feeling confident
Cover Image Credit: Tumblr

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10 Ways To Keep Your Workout Motivation According To A Personal Trainer

"ALEXA play 'Work Bitch' by Britney Spears."

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Keeping your motivation for working out is one of the number one reasons why I think people fail to achieve their fitness goals.

Now I am no "fitness guru" by any means, and I have lost my motivation many times and worked back up.

No one is perfect when it comes to working out, and everyone can have different methods that are successful but from what I have seen, and talking to a few personal trainers, these are some of the best ways to keep your motivation and not lose track of your goals.

If you stick to these 10 ways, you will definitely have a better mindset when it comes to working out, and that will help you push yourself hard because you know that you are capable of much more than you think!

That is the last piece of advice I will leave you with, you are so much more capable of than you think. I recall so many times in the gym, I've thought I was gonna just collapse or crumble cause I was so tired, but time and time again I persevere and finish a set, and see that I can really push myself to the limits, and this is when I've seen the best results.

1. Talk about your goals.

You have to speak your goals into existence. Also speaking about them to others can help hold you accountable and you are working so hard for them, don't give up and let what you accomplished so far go to waste!

2. Get a consistent workout buddy.

This is something that I have found helps me out a lot, my roommate Jordan and I are always checking in on each other to make sure that we've worked out!

3. Want better for yourself, not to impress someone else.

This is also very important, if you have fitness goals solely to impress someone else, you will never be satisfied, or never feel like enough.

4. Want it more than you say.

You really have to want your fitness goals more than you are saying. If you have this goal that is driving you constantly in the back of your mind, your motivation will keep coming from within.

5. Have a scheduled workout plan.

If you have a workout plan that a professional or yourself has constructed, it gives you something to follow and not break. Having a plan for yourself will help keep yourself on track.

6. Take pictures every week!

Seems cheesy, but taking photos of yourself every week can hold you accountable but more importantly, you are able to see results, big or small, if you aren't seeing them in person, you'll be able to tell through the photos.

7. Know what your plan is before you go to the gym.

You should know what your plan is before you go to the gym, try not to just wing it. If you are winging it, who knows if you are really pushing yourself and constantly challenging yourself every gym session.

8. Try your best to maintain a healthy diet during the week.

This can be difficult of course, meal prepping is someting that can always helps! BUT if you don't have time to meal prep, then just go to the grocery store and buy a bunch of healthy snacks to eat throughout the day to keep your motabalism working. Get foods to fuel your body so all your hard workouts don't go to waste!

9. Stick to a plan, it'll be hard at first, but it only gets easier.

Once you get into the swing of things, get into a routine, you'll get used to it. And then you will truly enjoy it, feel great, and have more energy!

10. Surround yourself with others that also have the same goals as you.

As cliche as it is, you do pick up the traits of the people you surround yourself with. If you surround yourself with overachievers, hard workers, who have the same fitness goals as you, you'll all work hard together and encourage each other along the way!

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