When you start your freshman year of college, you’re finally able to do whatever you want without your parents having to tell you no. This means staying out late, skipping a class or two and eating anything you want.
For most college freshman, this is the year you tend to put on some weight better known as the “Freshman 15.” However, most people continue to gain weight throughout their college careers because the habits they formed during freshman year followed them throughout the rest of college.
Instead of just trying to avoid the freshman 15, try creating healthy eating and living habits from the start, to not only prevent those 15 pounds freshman year but the rest of the weight you might gain throughout your college career.
Side Note: It’s totally normal to gain some weight in college, you’re growing into an adult, but there’s a difference between putting on weight as you age versus putting on weight from drinking, eating unhealthy and lounging around.
Don’t Forget Breakfast
You’ve heard the saying, “breakfast is the most important meal of the day,” probably over 100 times, but it really is true. To stay in shape, you need to have a fast moving metabolism, and one way to do so is by kick-starting it in the morning.
Even if you just grab an apple or a ‘semi’ healthy granola bar and a bottle of water before class, you’re fueling your body bright and early.
Doing so will not only help your metabolism all day, but it will help curb your appetite, so you don’t eat a huge lunch, and in turn, you won’t eat a huge dinner. See by eating breakfast you stop yourself from eating big meals the rest of the day.
Stock Your Dorm Room With Healthy Snacks
It’s easy to get to college and start binge eating all the candy, chips and sodas in the world, but a few months of that and you’re well on your way to the freshman 15.
Instead of shopping for unhealthy snacks, try buying snacks that still taste good but are much more healthy. Buy and freeze grapes instead of ice cream or buy apple chips instead of Doritos.
Save your indulgent treats for occasions and out of your dorm room.
Don’t Drink Your Calories
Many people don’t realize how many calories and grams of sugar they are actually drinking instead of eating.
Whether you’re drinking soda or going out every night and drinking alcohol, you’re drinking hundreds of calories and don’t even know it. But don’t decide to skip a meal just to enjoy your favorite drinks. When you choose to skip a meal, your body reacts to alcohol a different way and sends messages to your body saying it’s hungry and hungry for carbs and sugars.
You then go out and order a pizza and split it with a friend and end up eating and drinking twice the amount of calories you should have had that day.
Understand What You’re Putting In Your Body
One mistake that college freshman make is that they genuinely don’t know what they’re putting into their bodies. When you’re enjoying unhealthy foods, your first instinct isn’t to check the nutrition facts, but sometimes it should be.
You don’t have to obsess over what you eat every time you have a meal, but being aware of what is in the food you’re eating will help you make better decisions when it comes to eating healthy.
Join A Sports Club or Two
Grab a couple of your friends and join some sports clubs. They can be an excellent opportunity for you to make new friends and live an active lifestyle.
You don’t have to go to the gym to stay in shape, joining a sports club will do the same thing and be much more fun. Make memories and new friends to last you all throughout college.
Drink Tons Of Water
One good thing to do is drink lots and lots of water every single day. Drinking water has tons of health benefits, we’re sure you know that.
But really, drinking lots of water every day helps flush toxins out, keeps your skin clear and helps curb any food cravings by filling you up when you’re in between meals.
Take Control Of the Dining Halls
Dining halls can be exciting when you get to college, it’s like a buffet for every meal. However, don’t treat your dining hall experience like a free-for-all and only eat what you need.
Don’t run to the ice cream machine every time you go to get food, get your protein, carbs, and nutrients from vegetables and then every so often grab yourself an ice cream cone for a treat.
Everything Is OK In Moderation
Of course, we’re not telling you that you can’t enjoy a delivery pizza or pig out on some of your favorite snacks with your friends every now and then, that’s just unrealistic.
Everything is totally fine in moderation. A few slices of pizza isn’t going to make you fat, just like a couple days of eating healthy won’t make you in shape. It goes both ways and being able to find a happy medium is when you’ll be able to say you’re in control of your health.
Get Enough Sleep
In college, it’s almost impossible to get eight hours of sleep every night, truly impossible. However, being able to get as much sleep as you can really help you in the long run.
Whether it’s taking a nap every so often or saying no to a party or two to catch up on your sleep, find a way to get that beauty sleep. It helps your body stay regulated and keeps your brain sharp and focused for those college classes.
Snack The Right Way
Snacking is something that most people think is a no-no. However, it actually is very beneficial. Most people need to eat about three or four meals a day depending on their health and needs. But what do you do if you get hungry?
Snacking in between your meals is totally okay, and actually helps keep your metabolism moving all day long. Of course, that doesn’t mean snacking on cookies or chips, that will just do the opposite.
But snacking on some fruit or some pretzels and hummus will curb your hunger and keep your body moving all day long.