Fitness Corner

by Adam Revelette
Contributing Writer

You’ve got all your books. You know how long it takes to walk to your classes and what buildings they’re in. You’re getting to know some new people on your residence hall floor. Heck, you’ve even made some friends. College is great, isn’t it?

Hold on for just a bit. Consider that you also know where the places to eat are, and probably the hours they’re open as well. You know where the nearest grocery is, and how much you enjoyed shopping for food without a parental presence, at least until you had to pay for all of the popcorn, frozen pizza and mini candy bars.

Do you know about the “freshman 15”? Do you know it can happen your sophomore year, too? And every year for the rest of your life? Not to bring you down, but you surely don’t want to be “that guy” that was in good shape in high school and, shall we say, “let themselves go” in college. (And trust me, there will be a “that guy.”) So here are some key contributors of weight gain for college students and tips for prevention to aid in the battle versus the belly (from http://freshman15.com):

1. Lack of exercise: Don’t fall into the routine of “wake up, go to class, take a nap, wake up, drink some … soda, go to sleep, repeat.”… Get to the Beck Center for some pickup basketball or take a nice long walk or jog around campus while the weather’s still nice.

2. Late-night eating: Taco Bell’s “Fourthmeal” sounds like a great idea at the time, but it’s something you’re physique will pay dearly for. Think about it: Pigging out (or just plain snacking) right before you’re about to sleep is terrible for your metabolism and digestion (especially for those of us who sleep horizontally).

3. Unhealthy snacks: Remember how cool it was to buy nothing but Mountain Dew and Oreos at the grocery and not hear one of your parents complain? Enjoy them for now, but consider some pretzels, trail mix and bottled water next time.

4. Cafeteria food: With just a swipe of your crimson card, you’ll also be presented with the opportunity to enjoy one of Transy’s superb dining facilities. However, you’ll also have the opportunity to crush cheeseburgers, multiple slices of pizza, bottomless sodas and as much dessert as you want, all of which can contribute to weight gain. Remember to mix in a wrap or take a trip through the salad bar when you can.

5. Drinking excessive amounts of alcohol: What’s excessive? How’d you feel Sunday morning? It’s part of the nightlife of every college in the country, and a big reason for collegiate weight gain, as well. Enjoy responsibly, legally and in moderation.

So good luck to all of you in your battles with the books, the booze and the bulge. For more information, visit http://freshman15.com.

Fitness tip of the week: Drink water! Not only does it keep you hydrated, but it can speed up your metabolism and help curb appetite as well. It’s also free of sugar and carbonation (which is why you’ve never heard of “diet water”). The daily recommended amount of water you should drink varies depending on your body weight, activity level and climate. A good place to start, however, is your body weight divided by two; that number is how many ounces you should strive to drink each day.

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