The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

The Daily Campus

The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

SMU professor Susanne Scholz in the West Bank in 2018.
SMU professor to return to campus after being trapped in Gaza for 12 years
Sara Hummadi, Video Editor • May 18, 2024
Instagram

The Freshman 15

Five ways to keep the weight off your first year in college

As you head to the Hilltop, many new experiences await you. The Boulevard, Tex-Mex cuisine, theme parties, new friends, an education and endless opportunities are right around the corner.

You already know about all the fun that surrounds Dallas Hall, so no need to elaborate on that. For your benefit though, we would like to warn you about the infamous “Freshman 15.”

You’ve heard about it from your parents and you have seen it firsthand when your older friends return home for their first Thanksgiving break. We went to the experts and found out from Nikki Lopez of Exhale Spa Dallas that almost 25 percent of first year students will gain at least five percent of their body weight before winter break, according to a recent study in Nutrition Journal.

Lopez offers these five simple steps to avoid an expanding waistline:

1) Take advantage of fitness classes offered by on-campus gyms. You can purchase a Group X fitness pass at the Dedman Center for Lifetime Sports, or you can add a Wellness class to your schedule. This is one class you won’t want to skip!

2) Get smart about nutrition. The stickers on the prepared food at Umphrey Lee can help steer you towards healthier choices. Try to choose more foods marked with green and yellow dots rather than red dots. Always remember: green’s a go!

3) Work out whenever, wherever. Just because you’re locked away in your dorm room studying doesn’t mean you can’t fit in a quick workout. “During study breaks, use your chair to press out some tricep dips. Tone your legs and glutes with alternating lunges, and keep your core strong with abdominal crunches,” Lopez says. The old excuse of not having any time to work out is outdated; you can always find a spare 20 minutes!

4) The more, the merrier. Find a few friends and turn exercise into a social activity. “Buy a couple of exercise DVDs and organize a weekly workout night with your roommates or dorm mates,” Lopez suggests. Now you’ll never have to sacrifice time with your friends for a workout and you’ll stay fit together.

5) Mind your mind. “Increased mental stress can lead to binging on sugary and unhealthy foods that lead to weight gain,” Lopez says. Just because you have a tough exam coming up doesn’t give you an excuse to chow down on Pokey O’s ice cream sandwiches.

Use these first couple of weeks to instill healthy habits in your daily routine. It is never too early to start making healthy decisions.

More to Discover