Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Fool - Proof Tips For Fighting The Freshman 15


One of the biggest struggles in college is fighting the Freshman 15. I gained the freshman 30. That's right, I gained a whopping 30 pounds of fat and misery. But if you follow these tips you wouldn't succumb to the same fate as I did. Fighting the Freshman 15 is very possible and I’m here to tell you how to do it. Even if you've already gained those pounds these tips can help you to get back on track to healthier leaner you. It worked for me so I know they'll work for you.



PORTION CONTROL

This is my first tip for fighting the Freshman 15. Why? Because we often don’t realize how much we consume when we're away at college. Think about all those all-nighters and how many cups of coffee, latte's, and/or energy drinks that you consume. Those drinks are loaded with lots of calories. Same with excess snacking. We tend to snack more when stressed and this contributes to weight creeping up on us. My apartment was close to a Sonic and a 7 Eleven  Needless to say when I was stressed out and pulling those all nighters those were the first places I would head to in order to fulfill my fix. Whatever you're choice of indulgence try you're best to exercise restraint when it comes to your portions. It's a bit unrealistic to expect that a college student would always snack on vegetables so even if your getting that bag of chips I'd suggest that you take out a portion of it and put that big bag away. Preferably out of sight. 



EXERCISE

Most schools have deals at their gyms so take advantage of it.  Or try joining a club sport team, or a yoga/Pilates class (this also helps alleviate some of the stress). Sure it’s an extra expense, but think about the benefits! It will be way cheaper in the long run than having to constantly buy new jeans, ladies. Think about it. =)


HYDRATE

Skip the soda and energy drinks and drink water instead. Staying hydrated will help to keep you healthy, and it also does wonders for your skin. You can try juices too, but make sure that they are low in added sugars, preservatives, and high fructose corn syrup. Buy fruits and use your blender to make delicious smoothies. Always try your best to have a bottle of water with you at all times. Not a fan of plain ole water add Crystal Lite packets or slices of lemon or cucumber to your chilled water. It's absolutely delicious.  


GET ENOUGH SLEEP

Not getting enough sleep can make you fatigued and lazy and causes you to eat more than you usually would. I know that in college, our sleep schedule is  flipped and turned completely upside down, so it's important to be on a good sleeping schedule. While I wish I could say that I've taken my own advice when it comes to getting adequate sleep I'd be lying.  (Don't judge me) But in this case I'd advice that you do as I say NOT as I do. You'll thank me later.


GET A WORKOUT BUDDY

Working out is sometimes easier when you know that you aren't in it alone. Ask around perhaps your roommate or friend or even a co- worker would be your workout buddy. Another great tip is to get a small group to pitch in for a gym membership. That way it can be a bit more affordable, and everyone can benefit. Most colleges provide students with the use of the school gym for free or for a very affordable fee. Spending a few moments to look into finding a good gym is so worth it. You're at college to invest in your future. Take this time to invest in your health. If you cant find an affordable gym perhaps you can walk around. Instead of driving everywhere it never hurts to put on your sneakers and take a walk. You'll be surprised by the excess calories you'll be burning off. 


KEEP A FOOD JOURNAL AND WORKOUT SCHEDULE

I'm not saying to count every single calorie that you consume. But make an effort to write down what you eat. Trust me, when you see that your last couple of entries are nothing but sweets and fatty foods, you'll be more likely to want to changing things up. My favorite website and app is MyFitnessPal. It's simple to use, easily available online or as an app, and best of all it's free. Also, keep a good workout schedule and stick to it. Designate a day and time to hit the gym, go for a run, go for a bike ride, or put on your favorite workout DVD. Craigslist can also be your best friend. If you live in a house or an apartment you can find cheaply priced treadmills or ellipticals on Craigslist. If you're lucky you can also find that some are absolutely free. 



HAVE A CHEAT DAY

I love this tip. Depriving your body of what it craves can be harmful and counter productive. If you've been eating healthy, why not reward yourself? Hey, you may even find that you don’t even want that slice of cake, and may opt for a yummy yogurt parfait instead of ice cream. Whatever your guilty pleasure might be, go ahead and enjoy it for a day. I'm a huge fan of the 80/20 rule. 80% of the time try to eat as clean as you possibly can and the remaining 20% feel free to indulge a bit.  



MAKE HEALTHY CHOICES

I know this can be a challenge when you’re surrounded by is convenient  cheap, tasty junk foods but look around your campus market. Most almost always have healthier alternatives and options for you to choose from. If not, buy some healthy foods the next time you go grocery shopping and make your own lunch.Meal planning and prep for the week not only saves time, saves money, but it also helps to keep you from grabbing the junk foods when you're hungry and on the go. (Perhaps I'll do a post on how I do my Meal Prep for the week on another post) My favorite place to shop for healthy goodies without breaking my bank account is Trader Joe's. Another tip would be to look into your local farmer's market. Usually you can get fresh produce at a reasonable price. P.S. if you're fruits are spoiling before you can eat them all wash it, peel it(if applicable) cut it up, and freeze it. Trust me it works and it saves you from throwing your money away.


These tips are tried and approved by myself and from many of my friends who have already gone through it. If you have any other tips or comments, please let me know. I'd love to hear back from my readers.

Live long and proper...