Avoiding the Freshman Fifteen

By Alejandra Hernandez What is the “Freshman 15?”  It is an expression that refers to an amount of weight often gained by students during their first year of college.       College life calls for endless hours spent studying, lack of sleep, lack of exercise, and a poor diet.     The most common mistake students that causes them to gain the freshman fifteen is their choice in food. While Texas A&M International University offers various healthy meals to choose from in our cafeteria, many students usually pick the fast food items offered, such as Chick-Fil-A, pizza, and other high-calorie foods.     However, students also have the option to get vegetables, protein, and fruits in the same cafeteria. There are other ways students can maintain a healthy weight.     Buying healthy foods at the market, and thus having nutrient- rich options on hand will help reinforce healthy eating habits and help students to avoid unhealthy patterns.     Fruits, nuts, granola, and canned soups can serve as snacks or “healthy fast food”. Two snacks per day can help maintain your stomach full during the day, and will not hurt the way energy drink or sweets do.     Cooking at home can control calories and nutrients intake and can also help save money, another bonus for students.     In addition to maintaining a proper diet, staying active can keep off extra pounds and also reinforce a healthy lifestyle.     At TAMIU, the recreation center fee is included in the tuition.  The recreational sports center or better known as the “Rec” is expanded.  The rec center recently underwent a 14,000 square foot addition, which includes new activity rooms, weight training and expanded cardio areas.     TAMIU Rec Sports Group Fitness offers a wide selection of fitness classes for an array of fitness levels. The strength and conditioning program is invested in ensuring that students and members are able to execute strength training exercises safely and effectively. Whether students have been training for years or for a week, the weight room will provide equipment and resources needed to reach students’ fitness goals.     Fitting in a workout before or after classes is a great way to stay healthy, and start or end the day on a high note. Even a simple walk around campus can make a difference. The average student walks 10,000 steps per day, equal to about five miles (eight kilometers).     College life can be healthy. It’s just a matter of determination.
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