Weight Loss Support - freshman 15 real or fake??

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11-25-2011, 08:21 PM
hey guys before i started school i had lost 33 pounds now i have gained back almost 20. :mad::mad: do you believe in the freshman 15?? where you supposidly gain 15 pounds or so the 1st year you go to university??
any experinces or suggestions would be helpful ;)

11-25-2011, 08:37 PM
Some people gain weight when they start college, some don't.

Watch what you eat and drink, exercise regularly, and make good choices: you'll be fine.

11-25-2011, 08:51 PM
freshman 15 is definitely real! I've been through it myself. I would say at the dining commons, go to the salad bars and avoid the ice-cream. Don't binge drink on the weekends, settle with 1-2 mixed vodka drinks and dilute it with water. Good luck!

11-25-2011, 09:06 PM
I think it's just like any other 15 lbs...if you eat enough to gain it...you will!

11-25-2011, 09:16 PM
My experience in college was that it was definitely easy to gain weight. Our cafeteria was amazing, and there was sooo much food to choose from, plus all sorts of delicious desserts... it was crazy! Lots of drinking on the weekends plus all the free food made me gain quite a few pounds in college.

Of course, that was only because I made bad decisions. Losing weight in college is certainly possible if you plan and make good decisions. I could have selected healthy foods from the cafeteria; there was a soup/salad bar, fruits, veggies, sandwiches, etc. Plus there was a gym that was free to students in my dorm. It's not like greasy, high-calorie food was my only choice =) Good luck!

11-25-2011, 09:21 PM
Well the freshman 15 has been debunked in studies, and my experience supported that. I lost like 25lbs my freshman year because I had to walk so far to get to the dining hall, and I went to a school in the mountains, so almost everywhere was uphill!

11-25-2011, 09:24 PM
A lot of it has to do with what kind of flexibility there is in the meal plan and what you do with it. Fortunately I think there are more choices than there were when I was there.

Our meal plan was mandatory for a minimum of 16 meals/week . We had no salad bar and our only vegetable choice (every day) was overcooked canned vegetables swimming in oil. (NASTY). Deep fried and casseroles were 85% of the meals. The food was disgusting but there were no grocery stores in walking distance to campus and most students in the dorm couldnt afford to park a car on campus.

The 15 isnt mandatory it comes from:

Poor food availability

Budget constraints (unfortunately fattening foods are cheap and easily available)
Lack of food knowledge (you should be good here!) but for many college freshman this is the first time they have been in charge of their own food choices
Social eating and temptations- If everyone in your study group wants to order pizza...
Alcohol, it's calories, and the related lack of food control
Stress eating and sleep disruption- what is available at 2 am in your dorm when you are cramming for your midterm. Unless you plan ahead it's likely to be vending machine.

Budget time for exercise. Budget room for SOME social eating so you can control it. Stock your dorm with reasonable alternatives. If you cant go to the grocery often, figure out reasonable shelf stable alternatives and go when you can.

11-25-2011, 09:48 PM
It's not inevitable, but some amount of weight gain does seem pretty common among undergrads. I probably gained about 15 lbs. my freshman year (and then about another 35 my sophomore year). My main problems were a lack of knowledge about what actually constitutes a healthy, balanced diet; a lack of healthy coping mechanisms to deal with the stress, anxiety, and depression I was feeling; and the superabundance of bad choices that were often too difficult for me to turn down. I would suggest that you find out the nutritional info for the food that's being served in the dining halls so you can select the best food options, figure out if there's anything that triggers you to overeat or make poor food choices if either of those things are problems for you (e.g., emotions, boredom, tiredness) and work on dealing with the triggers, and to move to a dorm or off-campus housing with a full kitchen if/when you can. Having your own kitchen gives you much more control over what you eat and can help you sidestep dining hall temptations (if there are any).

11-25-2011, 09:58 PM
I gained it. I didn't live on campus and I didn't have a meal plan - but college kids are generally young, just moved out of their house, control what they spend money on moreso than before, and party a lot! I had a lot less responsibilities. So that consisted of hanging out with friends + food... presto, the 15 & more!!

11-25-2011, 10:25 PM
I gained 15 my freshman yr for reasons already stated. Lots of late nights, parties, drinking and eating Krystal and pizza late at night.
However, when I went to nursing school for 3 yrs, I gained 20, b/c all you do in nursing school is study, eat, study, go to clinical, sit, & study!!
There was NEVER a free moment to walk, bike, or think...
All we could do was study!!

11-26-2011, 09:54 PM
It was real enough for me. I live in a dorm and the cafeteria here is amazing. You have a mealplan and you get to eat anything you want, you only pay "one meal" but it's like a buffet. Hard not to overeat when you're surrounded by all deliciousness and baked goods and whatnot. I gained the 15 lbs in as little as 2 months. It sucked. It was very hard to get back on track. I had to do p90x and diet to get back to where I was although I never got back to the original weight I was at before starting college. Now i'm just a rollercoaster with my weight and trying to lose it back cause I gained a lot again. The cafeteria is great... but evil if you don't have good self control :[

11-26-2011, 10:00 PM
Real for me, but not 15 pounds. Maybe 10.

Coming from my paretn's house, where my mom cooked dinner every night and portioned out our food, having free range of yummy college food did me in. Even as a Senior in high school, we had to ask to have a pop or snack. Then I was in college and could buy whatever crap I wanted to keep in the dorm.

Couple that with a lack of exercise from sports that i was previously doing in high school and it is pretty easy to gain weight and devlop poor eating habits.

11-26-2011, 11:58 PM
The freshman 15 is real,and if you went to a school with excellent food options, it is usually more. Like at my college,we told incomings and prospectives that it would be more like 30 -45lbs.our school had been nationally 1st or 2nd for years for our food. So I know the feeling. The food is available and awesome so u gain weight.hmm...perhaps that's why they recently build a brand new rec center,so the whole campus would collapse because of the weight.lol.

11-27-2011, 01:26 AM
I actually lost about 30 pounds my freshman year of college... I gained it all after i Left college that next year.
It all depends on how you handle your down time, just exercise regularly and watch what you eat and you will be fine!
I lost mine from watching what I ate, staying active All the time and working out!!
Now after a few years I'm back in college and trying to lose a Lot more than that!

11-27-2011, 01:31 AM
I was able to maintain my weight during my freshman year and that was living on campus 5 hours away from home with nothing but cheap and unhealthy foods.

11-27-2011, 03:47 AM
I actually lost about 20 lbs my freshman year. I walked to class every day AND I had a bike. I wasn't "careful" of what I ate, per se, but I did was mindful of what I ate. My junior year I gained about 80 because I was commuting about 1 hr to work and had fast food for my meals and exercised almost none!

I think as long as you don't gorge yourself on food and make it a point to do a little exercise per day, you can definitely lose weight!

11-27-2011, 02:49 PM
The "freshman 15" happens for two reasons. First, kids away from home for the first time go out and drink a ton of beer. Beer, like anything other drink, has calories. So students can gain weight that way. Second (what happened to me), you're away from home for the first time and you can eat whatever you want without your parents or whoever giving you crap about it. Just be mindful of what you eat or drink and you'll be fine!

11-27-2011, 03:02 PM
There was a study done that says that the freshman 15 isn't real. I don't know if it's valid or not, but I think there's a variety of reasons why someone can gain weight their freshman year of college.

The change in environment can really do it, but if you watch yourself you should be fine.

I didn't gain or lose weight throughout undergrad and grad school and stayed at 200 pounds the entire 5 years for both. I also lived at home though, so there's that.

11-28-2011, 12:04 PM
well put it this way

beginning of my last year of highschool: 58kg
end of last year of highschool: 60kg
end of first year of uni: 64kg

That's a gain of 13 pounds since the beginning of 12th grade, and 9 pounds since graduating HS. Crept up even more in second year: had me at 66kg near the end of second year (thats when I decided to make a real effort to lose weight). That's 13 pounds since finishing HS! :(

11-28-2011, 01:06 PM
Well, I guess what the thing with Freshman 15 is, you don't magically gain weight just because you went to college. You must be doing something different. :(

11-29-2011, 04:35 AM
Well, I guess what the thing with Freshman 15 is, you don't magically gain weight just because you went to college. You must be doing something different. :(

for me i think it was a combo of the following:

1. extreme lack of sleep (4-5 hours a night sometimes) made me hungrier and too exhausted to exercise
2. very long travel time was exhausting and caused me to eat late: I used to get home at 8pm some nights, which is when I would have dinner
3. all the cafes and food outlets at uni were tempting :/

11-29-2011, 04:45 AM
Yes I did gain the freshman 15, more like 20 I would say. But I totally know why, wrong eating, sodas, fast food, chocolates and just munching.

11-29-2011, 02:16 PM
I think its as real or as fake as you want it to be. If you are not watching your calorie intake, what you are putting in your mouth and partying then of course yours probably going to gain some weight. On the other hand, if you go into it watching what you eat and continuing with some sort of exercise then you probably wont gain very much. It all depends on your habits.

11-29-2011, 03:08 PM
I gained three, but I looked gross because I stopped moving so much and was eating terrible foods, so I got flabby.

I yo-yo'ed for about a year or two, then midway through my junior year I buckled down (I wasn't really eating enough) and lost about 12lbs in just two months, putting me at the lowest adult weight I had ever been. I was wearing a size 12 in children's clothes and I had gorgeous muscles on my arms from lifting, and I finally learned how to run and would do four miles a day. I had a group guy friends who lived in my dorm and we would all go to the gym for two hours a day M-F at 4:30, then head back, shower, and go to dinner together. It was awesome because it was our routine and we all just encouraged each other to go.

I sometimes wish I could do it now, but as a single mom, I don't have the time that I had back then.

11-29-2011, 07:50 PM
In college now and definitely some kids have gained, including me. I gained 60 lbs though, not just 15. However, I went from anorexic in high school to a binger so now that I'm eating relatively normal again, my body is much happier. Though my metabolism is still quite slow.

College was hard for me because I was lonely, I had trouble resisting temptation, and all I wore was sweatpants. Plus, I loved the free ice cream. I had no idea that my jeans went from baggy to can't even fit in them. But if you plan ahead and work at it, one should be fine.

11-29-2011, 09:19 PM
I lost weight because I had to walk a mile to campus and back to the dorms every class. Plus I just started eating better in college. Freshman 15 is totally avoidable.

11-29-2011, 09:29 PM
Real. I think part of my problem was being scared to eat around people... cuz I was already chubby. So there was this feast and famine cycle and when I came home on the weekends, I would feel SO free to eat to my heart's content.

I also didn't have a scale in my dorm until the second semester but the damage was done. I tried joining a gym too but that didn't work... I was simply stressed and self-conscious and it was BAD.

I should really count my blessings more, because I'm now a junior in college and I've been losing weight since the summer after freshman year. I now weigh less than I did before I entered college which is rather surreal!!

11-29-2011, 09:47 PM
My "freshman fifteen" was actually a "college twenty". I probably gained most of that in my freshman year, and even then without realizing it, and then a couple more pounds towards the end.

In retrospect, I must've been eating an insane number of calories. Just thinking about a weekend brunch in the cafeteria, I must've consumed at least 1300kcal in one meal (my current daily intake!).

While the Freshman 15 absolutely can be real, I think anyone going in with a plan can avoid it (e.g., not being tempted by all-you-can-eat meals, continuing whatever exercise is already in your routine, continuing on whatever plan you've established at home). I wasn't ready for weightloss while I was in college, but had I been, I'm sure I could've done it, Freshman 15 be damned.