Avoiding the “Freshman 15” on Campus

freshman 15

Are you a first year student? Are you living in residence? Do you spend a great deal of time on campus?

If this applies to you, you might be worried about the dreaded “freshman 15”. It’s almost halfway through the first semester (midterm season!), and our day-to-day lives are probably a lot different than they were a couple months ago. You might already be noticing weight gain, or other side effects like a lack of energy.

I’m here to give you a couple tips to avoid any of that and keep you looking and feeling healthy!

1. Make healthy choices in the cafeteria.

I know it can be easy to blame the cafeteria for providing a lot of fatty, greasy, sugary, carb and calorie-loaded foods, but believe it or not, there are healthy options.

-Check out the salad bar (I wish I would’ve discovered how great it is earlier)! There are so many healthy options like spinach leaves, veggies, eggs, tofu, or beans, which can really fill you up.

-Check out the sandwich bar! Choosing exactly what goes into your sandwich makes it easy to eat healthy.

-The fruit bar never gets old. Try creating different combinations of fruit every day to keep it exciting!

-If you’re in a hurry, grab a sandwich, salad, chicken or yogurt from the fridge to go!

2. Plan your meals.

I’m not saying you need to become obsessed with what you’re going to eat, but here’s a couple things you can do:

-Look at the menu cycles online to see if there will be healthy options available that day (this is the link: http://www.has.uwo.ca/hospitality/residencedining/menu_cycles.cfm). Sometimes there are options like chicken, tofu, or boiled veggies. This way, you can plan what to order, and don’t have to be enticed by the pizza or fries staring at you.

-Buy your food in advance. Grab a sandwich or salad from the fridge to eat for lunch during a break between classes, instead of stopping at the fast food restaurants.

3. Use the cardio/weight room in your res.

Isn’t it convenient that you can work out in your own building? Make some time to go exercise over the weekend, during study breaks, some evenings, or if you’re a morning person, before class!

4. Get to the rec centre.

My cousin in 3rd year has hardly made it to the rec centre (because he’s lazy, not because his schedule is busy, trust me). You can probably find something for you in the rec centre, since it offers a huge variety of services, and it is all included in your tuition! Try the group fitness classes (I’m definitely going to try them), hundreds of cardio and weight machines, Olympic-sized pool, squash courts, and more!

School is definitely up high on the list of priorities, but working out should help you feel more energized, relieve stress, and help you focus when studying.

5. Get enough sleep.

Everyone in university should try to do this. You’ll feel so much healthier (and will be), and it’ll help you accomplish the other tips above!

I’m definitely going to keep following my own advice, and I hope you can notice a difference in your lives if you follow it too! Enjoy the rest of freshman year (in the healthiest way possible)!

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