There’s a lot to look forward to in college, but one aspect drives fear into the hearts of incoming students everywhere – the dreaded “freshman 15.” While far from guaranteed, it’s easy to fall victim to this sudden weight gain when you’re away from home for the first time. Here are a few tips to keep in mind so you don’t return home in December in need of bigger clothing.
Beware of the dining hall
Many colleges and universities offer some sort of a dining plan to students that allows them to eat in the school cafeteria or dining hall – often as much as you want. While eating there is a good way to save money, be careful of the foods you’re consuming for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Colleges provide health-conscious meals, but there are an equal number of salty, greasy and fatty options available too.
Take a walk
Between intensive college courses, making new friends and adjusting to campus life, it can be hard to find time to hit the gym regularly. To make up for this, consider building walking into your daily routine. Cutting across campus to your classes instead of taking the shuttle or public transportation can help your burn off those late-night snack sessions.
Get some sleep
Despite the fact that college students often stay up studying or partying through the night, getting adequate sleep is important for maintaining a healthy weight. If you’re not getting a good eight hours every night, then your stress levels and slower metabolism could cause you to pack on a few pounds. And let’s face it, you’re going to be stressed a lot in college, so at least tip the odds in your favor by getting more sleep.