Wednesday, September 12, 2012

College Series 2: How To Avoid the Freshman 15

Now that everyone is back to school and settlin' in it's time for those lbs to sneak there way back as well.

We all worked so hard back in the Spring to get ready for bikini season and just because you won't be hitting the beach anytime soon doesn't mean that should change.

The Freshman 15 and Sophomore 20 are like the Bubonic Plagues of college, everyone gets it (mostly). 
But you don't have to put on the weight. Here are some tips you can use if you want to say "nuh-uh, not me" to those college calories.

1. Stay away from the grill
College dining halls always seem to have the delicious greasy food that just calls out your name! Big surprise: that food is bad for you! Eating pizza and fries for lunch and a burger a for dinner everyday will help those Freshman 15 come quicker than first semester midterms. The easiest way to keep those foods off your plate is to stay away. Don't even walk over to the grill when you walk around deciding what to eat. Once you see those cheese fries and smell the grilled cheese it will be that much harder to decide against it. But don't completely deprive yourself...getting a grilled cheese once in a while will not make or break you.

2. Get creative
Dining hall food can get old fast. It is super important to be creative with your food. Don't only use the ingredients from the salad bar when making a salad. Walk around the dining hall and see what you can add. My favorite is when it's taco day and my school and I get to make a taco salad. The same thing goes for the deli. If you like sandwiches try getting creative. Eventually you will get tired of the same food everyday and thats when you'll turn to the "bad for you" foods.

3. Free gym
When else in your life will you have a free, yeah that's right FREE, gym membership? Never! Maybe you'll be lucky enough to fall upon a job that will let you charge your gym membership, but more than likely when you graduate college you'll have to pay a lot more a month than you would like in gym fees. Either that or you'll be running outside. Use these 4 years (or however many you have left) and take advantage of your school's athletic facilities! Most schools even offer free exercise classes. Try those too! Classes are a great way to work out and meet new people. I know I am dreading the days when I have to pay for a gym so as for now I'm using my school's athletic center as much as possible.

4. Social Life
I know it's hard to think of your social life as something that can help prevent weight gain, but it can. I know most friendships center around food and in college many friendships may be built on a drinking. But friendships can also be built on other things as well. Find friends to workout's always fun to workout with a buddy. Even non-athletic activities are still a way to keep active. Organize a bowling night with a group of friends or walk into your college town (if it's safe). Even going out to a club on Thirsty Thursday can burn tons of calories as long as you are out on the dance floor and not sitting at the bar.

5. Dorm room snacks
The biggest culprit of the Freshman 15 is snackin'. When you get back to your room late at night you want nothing more than to to crawl into bed with Easy Mac and watch the most recent episode of The Jersey Shore. Stock your dorm with healthy snacks. Grab fresh fruits from your dining hall on your way out. Buy healthier or "not as bad" foods like popcorn, string cheese, and peanut butter instead of candy, pop tarts, and Oreos. My personal favorite snack is Goldfish :) But bottom line, what foods you keep in your room and snack on can is super important.

Hope these can all be up help to you!

What are your favorite tips to staying healthy in college? Share with us below.

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