How to Avoid Gaining 4 Pant Sizes Freshman Year

The skinny on not getting huge in college.

We’ve all heard of the dreaded “Freshman 15,” a phenomenon in which skinny first years go away to college in the fall and return unrecognizably large for summer. Follow these simple steps to stay healthy if you’d like to avoid having to reintroduce yourself to family members come May.

1. Don’t treat the dining hall like your personal all-you-can-eat buffet.

Admittedly, this is way easier said than done. Your dining hall will have sugary cereals and different kinds of pizza and several unidentifiable desserts, and the scary thing is that you’re allowed to have as much of everything as you want. Have strength, young freshman, and resist the third slice of pizza and second gigantic brownie! They both taste a little bit like chalk anyway.

If you played sports in high school and then show up to college with no athletic plans, you may start fighting with some zippers. Plan to be active in some way.

2. Watch the beer, and learn to love brands that end in “light.”

College tends to mean a lot of beer drinking, which basically equates to shoving loaves of bread down your throat in calories. If you were to actually shove loaves of bread down your throat, you would get fat. Fast. So pick a favorite light beer – they have less calories than regular brands – and try not to drink eight in one sitting (or standing, depending on how crowded that frat party is.)

3. Don’t forget what your mother taught you about nutrition.

Just because the dining hall has ice cream at all hours of the day doesn’t mean you should eat eight scoops at noon and call it a meal. Make an effort to eat relatively balanced meals with relatively healthy ingredients. Don’t forget that vegetables exist. Respect the rules of very basic nutrition and you’ll be ahead of half of your classmates.

4. Try to stay active.

If you played sports in high school and then show up to college with no athletic plans, you may start fighting with some zippers. Plan to be active in some way. Get into a workout routine at your school’s athletic center. Take the long route to and from class. At least choose to play Wii instead of sitting around watching reruns of "How I Met Your Mother." Don’t let your insatiable love of sitcoms destroy your efforts toward physical fitness!

5. Don’t allow your school’s snack store to become your second home.

Chances are your school carries processed and packaged foods that your parents weren’t exactly stocking in the pantry. As a result, you may be tempted to turn freshman year into a personal snacking challenge. Resist this urge. Do not spread peanut butter on top of Oreos every time the clock strikes 2 a.m. Do not become a pathetic, crumb-covered ball of regret.

So there you have it: your no-fail bible for not splitting your favorite jeans before sophomore year. You feel skinny already, right?

Quick Tips

  • The dining hall is not a buffet.
  • Beer will probably make you fat.
  • Ice cream doesn’t count as lunch.
  • Don’t sit around all day.
  • Don’t eat an entire box of Oreos at 2 a.m.

People Who Read This Article Also Read:

Avoid the Freshman 15: Healthy Options for College Favorites
Quick and Easy Dorm Meals
5 Seated Exercises for Study Breaks
3 Winter Exercises to Increase Brain Power

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