The ‘Freshman 15‘ is called a myth by some and known to be a reality by others, but it definitely does not have to be a fact of life for new college students.
Below are some great tips that will help you avoid unwanted weight gain in college – whether you are a freshman or going for your Master’s!
Build muscle to help avoid the Freshman 15
Instead of figuring out the best way to lose weight by starving yourself or running for hours on a treadmill, you may want to change your point of view, and thinking about gaining as the road to true weight stability.
Through gaining muscle, that is. Having a good amount of muscle on your body will help your system regulate and balance itself. Muscle reduces fat and automatically burns calories. It is a natural way to burn off the food you eat.
Weight training is just plain good for you, and not enough women start doing it at a young age. Lifting is the only thing (aside from being re-born as Gisele) that will naturally give you those killer thighs, toned butt, tight arms and curvier curves.
Do enjoyable cardio
Instead of killing yourself at the gym exercising on machines that you hate (or ditching the gym altogether to avoid working out on machines you hate), try to find something that you actually enjoy doing and use that as your cardio.
There are tons of activities around college campuses, like softball leagues, Frisbee, soccer, swimming, dance teams, flag football, and even just jogging or speed walking around the greens. This is a much healthier (emotionally and physically) way to avoid the freshman 15 than dieting or becoming a gym nut.
Follow the new serving recommendations
Michele Obama has recently revamped our old pyramid food chart with a much simpler way to get the right servings: a single plate. The USDA has now changed the way it teaches Americans about nutrition by simplifying the process. Now, one plate is divided into mostly grains and vegetable, with smaller portions of fruit and protein, and then a small side of dairy.
If you take a look at the suggested portions here, you can see that it’s a simple way to get plenty of nutrients at every meal. Next time you’re in line at your college cafeteria, think back to this new initiative when making food choices.
This is, of course, easier said than done in college. On top of the typical worries that come along with a brand new environment, making new friends, adjusting to difficult classes, and a heavier workload, it’s hard not to worry about gaining that freshman 15, especially if you feel yourself bloating up a bit a few months in to your freshman year.
Unfortunately, worry and stress in the body only exacerbate weight gain, especially in the stomach area. As difficult as it can be to not focus on your weight, the best thing to do is try to take that burned off your mind and replace it with exercise and a healthy diet that does not include starvation or empty, no calorie diet food.
Fitness can be fun and fit into YOUR schedule!
FitDeck is a unique deck of playing cards containing illustrations and instructions describing dozens different exercises, stretches, and movements.
One of the best things about FitDeck is that it breaks up the monotony of doing the same old exercises in the same exact order every time.
By shuffling the cards, you are guaranteed a new and fresh workout every time — and we all know the physiological and psychological benefits of such variety.
The ‘no-equipment’ FitDecks contain exercises that require only your bodyweight to perform. There are also FitDecks of 26 cards which use equipment such as resistance bands, medicine ball, balance ball, dumbells, kettleballs, etc.
About the author:
Katheryn Rivas is a freelance writer and resident blogger at online universities, a site dedicated to distance higher education. She welcomes your comments at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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