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Her Health: Staying fit in College

Staying fit in college may seem impossible, but it’s actually more achievable than you think.  Although students are gradually becoming more health-conscious, adjusting to a new environment may trigger students to put their health on the backburner.

According to kidshealth.org, studies show that students on average gain 3 to 10 pounds during their first 2 years of college.  It can be challenging to control our portions sometimes, especially when an unlimited amount of food is at our fingertips with just one meal swipe and suddenly our thoughts of eating healthy are put aside for a delicious looking cupcake.

We have all heard stories about gaining the infamous “freshman 15.” Are you worried that you’re heading in that direction?  
In order to stay fit, you must control your portions, but at the same time we should never neglect ourselves something yummy. I am the biggest culprit of indulging into delicious desserts! My advice: If you want something sweet, eat it, because if you continue to crave it you may binge on it later.
Truth: I was one of the unlucky students who gained the infamous “Freshman 15” my first semester at IUP.  In high school I was very active. I played three sports and maintained a healthy weight. When I came to college, I wasn’t so active and the weight quickly piled on.
It takes a good amount of effort to want to lose weight and keep it off. Believe me. It took hard work and dedication to get my body to where it is today.  I stay fit by working out at least five days a week. On days I physically can’t be in the gym, I do a simple routine of different types of crunches and squats in my apartment. I try to eat as healthy as I can every day.

I was curious to see what other girls around campus do to stay fit and here is what I found:
Two IUP students have found a routine that they religiously stick to in order to stay fit.

“I try to eat healthy Sunday night through Friday afternoon and then starting dinner time on Friday, usually I eat whatever and munch out and eat everything at Foster on Saturday and Sunday,” said junior Family and Consumer Sciences Education major Teal Golden.

During the week, Golden stays fit by eating a healthy cereal like Special K or Raisin Bran with skim milk for breakfast, a sandwich on wheat bread with turkey and nonfat cheese, light mayo and a cup of fruit for lunch, and a salad with grilled chicken and fat free or light dressing with carrots and cucumbers for dinner.

“I usually just try to stick to fruits and veggies (another dinner option would be grilled chicken, brown rice and green beans, broccoli, asparagus, etc.), said Golden. “I also usually try not to eat after 7-7:30 and definitely not munch out right before I go to bed.”

Along with her healthy food intake, Golden hits up the gym every day.

“Monday through Friday I try to work out for at least one hour at the gym,” said Golden. I mainly run intervals on the treadmill for 20 minutes and go on the elliptical for 20 minutes.”

After she finishes doing cardio, she will do 20 minutes of abs.

Another IUP student says staying fit everyday helps her have high self-esteem.
Codi Holstein, a junior early childhood and special education major, stays fit by eating in moderation and working out daily.

I’ll admit now that it’s my junior year, I have gotten sick of obsessing about what I eat, so I changed my view to thinking it is okay to be lenient with what I eat and I am not so strict, because I know as long as I work out extra hard I will be fine,” said Holstein.
She believes that a person can eat whatever one likes as long as it is in moderation and they exercise daily.
“Growing up, I was never surrounded by excessive treats and my family ate very healthy”, said Holstein. “I also make sure I am aware of calories. It makes me happy to maintain my weight and I have been trying to focus on eating better foods.”
Sometimes not eating healthy isn’t such a bad thing for the body as long as you excersise. Just remember that staying fit requires you to eat in moderation and work out daily.

Photos courtesy of Shavonneice Loubar

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