Everything may be bigger in Texas…

But this girl sure doesn’t want to be!

Gaining the dreaded freshman fifteen is something that every college student desires to avoid, yet many fail because they lack the tool necessary to manage studying, social activities, and exercise.

After being here for over two months, I have definitely began to understand why it is so hard to manage it all. I find myself being hungry all the time, and then when I am not thinking about it I snack. So what is the secret to success? Here are some of the things that have helped me become more aware sticking to my goal of maintaining a healthy weight during college.

1. Water: Because it is so hot outside I try to keep a water bottle with me at all times. Not only is water important for your body to function but it also helps your skin and hair. I stopped drinking soda in October 2011, which was a difficult thing to do at first but it’s great now. Because I don’t waste calories on those sugary drinks, I am able to enjoy dessert without worrying about the amount of sugar. Once you don’t have something for a long time your body no longer craves it. Sometimes I have a difficult time drinking water because I’m simply not thirsty, but by keeping it around constantly I am able to drink it throughout the day which really helps.

2. Fruit and veggies: Before you say “duh” and skip this part, hear me out. Most college cafeterias offer some type of fruit or veggies consistently. My school keeps a salad and fruit bar fully stocked and available at every meal. I try to have one salad a day and at least one serving of fruit at every meal. This helps me eat less of the junk food and allows me to get healthy nutrients. I feel like I have a lot more energy after I eat these healthy choices. Hailey and I have also been trying to keep some of these healthy options in our room to give us good choices for those late night cravings while cramming…. I mean studying for the next test.

3. Little Meals: My meal plan allows me to eat breakfast, lunch, and dinner in the cafeteria on weekdays and then lunch and dinner on the weekends. I take advantage of the majority of those meals, especially during the week. I try to eat just enough to be full and no more. I know that I will be ready for a snack a few hours later and this allows me to do so guilt free.

4. Healthy snacks: If your sitting in your dorm room studying and the only thing there is chips and soda that’s what your going to reach for. I try to keep some decent alternatives available because then I am motivated to eat them. Some good ideas are peanut butter, trail mix, and light popcorn.

5. Portions: It’s okay to splurge every once in awhile and dive into a treat (preferably something involving chocolatey goodness…mmmm). Just make sure you manage your portion size. Drinking a starbucks is fine, but choose the tall over the Vente. Eating a bag of potato chips is fine, just don’t do it every day. Pay attention to those labels on healthy choices as well. Popcorn can be a light calorie snack as long as you eat it in ration. Also, by switching up your meals and not eating the same thing everyday, you will make this a lot easier!

6. Utilize the Gym: Here at school, I am given a membership to the Rec Center as part of my student tuition. I love it! They have multiple basketball courts, volleyball courts, a futsal court, a room full of weight and cardio equipment, and a studio for classes.  The treadmills are really good and have built in fans and multiple settings to adjust the difficultly of a workout. If you are a Pinterest Addict like me, find some good work outs on there to take with you. You can do it!  I like to take my iPad and watch TV that I missed for the week while I run. This makes the time pass faster and I can watch TV guilt free.

7. Take Advantage of Classes: Every tuesday, there is a Zumba class for anyone who wants to come participate. This is my absolute favorite part of the Rec Center and I wish they offered it multiple times a week! They also have bootcamp, spin class, and yogalaties. I haven’t tried any of these but I probably will at some point. 🙂 It’s easier to be motivated in a group setting.

8. Take your Meal To Go: If I want to eat outside or if I am not ready to eat when it’s time for dinner I am able to request that I take my meal to go. Once I leave I am not allowed back in so I have to plan my meal out before hand. I usually get a baked potato and a salad when I do this because its filling and easy to put in a carry out box. I find that this helps with portion control.

9. Get your meal all at one time: The cafeteria here at college does a pretty good job of giving me lots of options, sometimes too many. It is so easy to eat one thing and go back and get something else, and then dessert, etc. If you decide what you want and get it all at one time then you aren’t tempted to go back and get more food. Also, tell yourself that you can always have a snack later. So eat until your full and then stop.

10. Use something to track your progress: I use a nike fuel band to count my fuel points for the day. It is a nice way to keep a goal and move a lot while trying to reach it. You could also use the nike shoe program on your phone, a pedometer, etc. I love this because it keeps me motivated and moving! Come back tomorrow for a review of the Fuel Band and all of it’s little perks!

Thought for the day: “Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your bodies.” – 1 Corinthians 6:19


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