Blog · Feel Great

Avoid the Freshman 15: Syracuse Style

Everyone has heard the horror stories about people who go to college and come back in the summer visibly having put on weight.  No one wants to be that person!  According to, the Freshman 15 is mainly due to the transition from living with your parents to living on your own.  No one is at college with you to tell you what is nutritious and what is not (Not everyone can be lucky enough to be friends with nutrition majors).  Therefore, freshmen sometimes load up on fatty, high-calorie food in the dining hall.  Also, many students who were athletes in high school do not continue to play sports in college.  Therefore, they may be less inclined to go to the gym, something they never before had to do.
The combination of these factors inevitably leads to weight gain.  But do not fear, the dreaded Freshman 15 can be avoided, especially at Syracuse University.  All you have to do is follow these simple tips:
  • Make a point to exercise regularly, whether you are heading to the gyms at Archibald or Ernie Davis or walking or running around campus.  We are lucky enough to have a beautiful campus, so we might as well take advantage of the lovely scenery!
  • If you live in Lawrinson or Sadler, choose to walk up the steps to the dome to get to your classes at the quad.  These steps may seem tedious, but they provide an excellent workout.
  • If you find yourself at Kimmel with your friends for a late-night snack, skip the Taco Bell and Burger King and opt for a delicious wrap.  This will satisfy your cravings and allow you to avoid the extra calories in fast foods.
  • When eating in the dining hall, try to incorporate fruits and vegetables into each meal. Take advantage of the smaller plates made available to you. These plates encourage portion control. Also, try to avoid putting as much food as possible on your plates. You are more likely to overeat if you pile up food from the very beginning.
  • When you are done with your meal in the dining hall, try not to linger for too long afterward. The longer you sit there, the more likely you are to want to get some delicious ice cream or a bowl of sugary cereal.
  • Avoid drinking soda with your meals.  These drinks contain no nutritional value and are empty calories.  Choose water or low-fat milk instead.
  • Is your class of the fourth floor? Take the stairs instead of the elevator!
  • Most students are not used to desserts being available to them at every meal, even breakfast.  But do not get into the habit of getting dessert every day; try to save that ice cream for a special occasion.  This way, not only will you avoid calories, but the dessert will be even more satisfying on those special occasions!
  • Do not keep unhealthy snacks in your room.  This tip is essential. You are more likely to eat when you are stressed out, and you are more likely to become stressed out late at night studying in your room.  If you only keep healthy snacks, such as fruit and nutrition bars, in your room, you are less likely to indulge in junk food because you don’t have any.
Following these tips will help to ensure a healthy freshman year.  Just remember, it’s OK to indulge every once in a while!
By Alexa Bickhart