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Avoiding the Freshman 15

Welcome to college. Where most schools make you live, breathe, and eat on campus. It’s really not so bad. There’s an unlimited amount of grilled cheese, hamburgers, pasta, salads, soups, soft drinks, and desserts. Sounds pretty heavenly actually, until they whip out the potstickers and you seem to forget that exercising is actually necessary if you want that ice cream cone after dinner. We’ve all heard the haunting stories of the all-too-common habit of gaining weight during your first year at college. But you don’t have to fall into pattern that everyone else seems to fall into. Here’s a few tips on how to avoid gaining the freshman fifteen:

  1. Make and stick to a daily exercise routine that you enjoy. It is recommended that we each get at least 30 minutes of arduous exercise every day, if not more. Find a time in your schedule that you can consistently go to the gym, or go on a run–and DO NOT make it optional (or else you’ll never go). If you don’t like going to the gym or running, you could also sign up for a dance class, or take classes at the local gym. Maybe sign up for some ballroom lessons or yoga classes. It all counts as exercise!

  2. Stick to greens and proteins. It’s easy to reach straight for the pizza or sugary cereals, but that’s not going to fuel your body and give you energy to get done what you need to. Next time you want to grab a burger or some fried rice, maybe try getting a veggie wrap with a small side salad and piece of chicken or turkey. If you’re craving something sweet, try swapping your pastry for a slice of whole grain bread with peanut butter and a banana.

  3. Drink water. It is so tempting to get soda or juice when there are so many options always readily available! But water should always be your first choice. Drink about 8 oz before you sit down to eat, to help boost your metabolism and simmer down your hunger. Water also works miracles for your complexion! Hydrating with water will help you to feel and look as great as you can.

  4. Lay off the alcohol. We know college is about working hard and playing hard, but playing hard might just be the cause of your sudden breakouts and gaining of weight. Alcoholic beverages have many calories, little to no nutrients, and when mixed with chasers, are just not very healthy at all. It messes with your sleep, leaves your skin feeling gross, and doesn’t do your lovehandles any favors. Next time you attend or host a party, keep the drinking to a minimum, and remember to hydrate and drink responsibly.

  5. Treat yourself once a week. Not once a day. We all understand. The chocolate chip cookies in Taos are delicious.The muffins are a sugary delight. And when has anyone ever said no to soft serve ice cream? Now don’t get me wrong, treating yourself is good– even recommended. But having dessert every meal of every day, is not treating your body, it’s hurting it. So when the cafeteria has your favorite dessert, have it! Don’t hold back. But make sure you wait a few days before treating yourself again.

The best way of taking care of your body does not involve strict diets, it just a matter of good habits. The things you feed your body are what determine the way you are going to feel and function. So take care of your bodies, to become a healthier, happier, brighter you.


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