New college student here! Advice? - 3 Fat Chicks on a Diet Weight Loss Community


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Old 03-07-2013, 01:57 AM   #1  
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Default New college student here! Advice?

Hello everyone! As my title suggets, I am new to 3FC and am also a college student. I've been so inspired from everything I've read here, and have decided that today's the day I'm going to start to change my life. (I've said this more times than I can count). After so many terrible things have happened in my life recently, I just want to be healthier and happier.

My struggles though are that, as a college student, my main priority ends up being school with fitness and health becoming secondary. Eating healthy is also difficult, with dining halls not having the best assortment of foods. I'm also so self conscious of going to the gym. :/ Any advice from other people with similar issues?
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Old 03-07-2013, 02:16 AM   #2  
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Welcome to 3FC! I have to tell you that health and fitness is soooooooo hard especially in college when you are putting school as a priority. I know from personal experience that most of my weight was put on because of college.

Few questions to you to gauge what you could do. First question is do you have access to a functioning kitchen? I know when I was living in the dorms, we had access to a microwave and an ancient stove. However, when I lived in an on campus apartment, we had access to everything. My biggest downfall is to sacrifice my health for convenience and cost.

Second question, two parts depending on what your food situation is. A) what is your budget for groceries or B) how much variety can you have while eating in the dining hall? For my dining hall, they had different stations: salad bar, sandwich bar at lunch, grill, classics (meat, starch, veggie), pizza, and international. If whatever they are serving seems crappy, we had the option of using points from our meal to an on campus restaurant, usually I go to Subway. But in any case, you could probably get a magic bullet or something for shakes on the go.

Like I said previously, my biggest downfall was eating cheaply. I gained 20lbs in one quarter alone because I ate white pasta with either white sauce or red sauce daily. I did that because it was easy to make and it was only $3 a box and $4 for the sauce. Oh, and I pulled late nights doing homework, went to 7-11 and got ramen, coffee and taquitos to keep my energy up. Something I knew was bad for me, but I did it anyway. Got good grades because of it though...

As for your gym phobia, you can probably talk to someone who works at the gym and ask when the gym is the least busiest and go during that time. I didn't have that problem, I just put a headset on and do my thing. It's kind of the mindset of the high school locker room, if you aren't looking at anyone, it's a good chance no one else is looking either. And if they do, it's their problem, I don't care what they think. Its better in a gym setting because you don't know anyone in there most likely.

But yeah, good luck with everything
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Old 03-07-2013, 02:41 AM   #3  
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I started college at 290 and lost about 30 lbs, (then gained it all back plus more which had nothing to do with college) anyway, I actually found it easier to lose weight not in a family environment where you eat with people as a group. All colleges have healthy choices! I know it's hard with temptation just a few feet away, but you can do it. And the gym, you'll learn to LOVE it. I'll never forget this one time, finishing my workout and this tiny little thing next to me noticed I was struggling. When my hour was up she stopped her workout and said "You did a really good job. I see you in here all the time. Keep it up!" People are not as judgmental as you think.
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Old 03-07-2013, 03:37 AM   #4  
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Hey Mariam,

I'm currently completing a second degree to become a Registered Dietitian, but initially I lost about 70lbs in my third year of my undergrad. I definitely experienced a lot of the same issues you did.

In terms of diet, I definitely found calorie counting to be my best option. It allowed me some freedom to go out with friends and eat "unhealthy" options once in a while, but still stay on plan. Lots of greens, vegetables and lean protein are going to be a staple for you.

There are tons of great exercise websites out there right now that offer free workouts that can be done in home in little or no equipment or done at the gym. I was self conscious at the gym too but after the first couple of times it's really not so bad. You get to the point where you stop caring what everyone else thinks because you're working way harder than 90% of the people there. Very few people (especially college girls) know how to workout properly so you'll already be ahead of the game if you focus on creating a good workout plan that's time efficient and effective. Why these online workouts are so great is they're actually quite challenging, scaleable for beginners and they give you structure.

Feel free to pm me if you want to chat .
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Old 03-07-2013, 07:05 AM   #5  
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I understand what you mean about school taking up so much time and focus, but trust me, life doesn't change when you get out of school and go to work every day or marry and have a family. Lives can get really busy and it takes real effort to eat healthfully and get in your exercise. It takes some commitment. Good for you for working at this while you are still so young!

As far as being self conscious at the gym... a lot of us are, but we do it anyway! Sometimes we just have to grit our teeth and get out there and do it. Most people at the gym are not thinking about you... they are thinking about themselves.

You can do it!

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Old 03-07-2013, 10:40 AM   #6  
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Originally Posted by Misti in Seattle View Post
I understand what you mean about school taking up so much time and focus, but trust me, life doesn't change when you get out of school and go to work every day or marry and have a family. Lives can get really busy and it takes real effort to eat healthfully and get in your exercise. It takes some commitment. Good for you for working at this while you are still so young!
I completely agree. Generally, those "freshman fifteen" don't appear because you're suddenly the busiest person in the world; typically it's because you're surrounded by all sorts of food and fun.

Now that I'm working, my day is solidly booked until 5:00pm. After that, I have to take care of my puppy and at least attempt to clean up a bit. I can't exercise until 6:00 at the earliest, usually closer to 7:00. If I go an hour, that means I'm not done until 8:00. Most of my day is accounted for.

You don't have to do a full hour if you're busy. You can slip off to the gym and do 30 minutes even. You can use videos in your room, go for a walk/jog around campus when it's nice out, hit the gym, etc.. Be creative! And don't be afraid to go to the gym, it's there to be used, not feared. I used to be afraid to go myself but honestly, when I think about my time in the gym, I have to say - I don't care what everyone else is doing. If I'm jogging, I'm watching my time/distance or tv. If I'm walking, I'm reading. If I'm strength training, I'm thinking, "I hate this, I hate this, I hate this". I don't remember any single person I've ever seen at the gym. I may as well have been there alone.

As for food, that will depend upon when you have access to. I managed to drop about 30 pounds with just a microwave. I had access to a restaurant where I lived but most of their food was packed with calories so I made sure to avoid it most of the time. All I got from them, a vast majority of the time, was the occasional salad and water.

I'm a firm believer that if you really want to do it, you'll find a way.

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Old 03-07-2013, 12:18 PM   #7  
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Welcome and good luck on your journey!!!
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Old 03-07-2013, 12:57 PM   #8  
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Thanks everyone for your advice and encouragement!

I think my main struggle at school is stress eating. When I'm buried under a pile of books at the library I eat, not out of hunger, but more so out of boredom and to occupy my mouth. I'm just going to carry a water bottle and fruit around all the time and hopefully this curbs my hunger.

As for my gym phobia - I'm going to really try and tackle it. My school has a great gym that I've hardly ever used. I've bought some cute gym clothes as motivation to get my butt out the door.

I'm going to Germany in May to visit relatives I've never met before, and would really love to look as good as possible by then! I know it's a little ambitious, but I want to try and lose about 30 lbs by then.
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Old 03-07-2013, 01:13 PM   #9  
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I think my main struggle at school is stress eating.
I struggled with this as well. I have anxiety too so that made it worse. I'd randomly walk down the hallway to grab something from the vending machine, get back to my room, start to eat, and then realize....I'm not even hungry. What...am I doing?

Once I realized I was doing that, it kind of shocked me into stopping. The realization that I essentially just lost control of myself and zoned out scared me. I don't know if thinking about that would help you or not but that's pretty much what did it for me.

Quote:
As for my gym phobia - I'm going to really try and tackle it. My school has a great gym that I've hardly ever used. I've bought some cute gym clothes as motivation to get my butt out the door.
Good! And like I said, I promise you - no one is really watching and once you get going, you'll realize you aren't really watching anyone either and that's what cements it in your mind.
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