Using WOU’s Health and Wellness Center to fight the “Freshman 15”

Numbers shouldn't make or break your self-esteem
Numbers shouldn’t make or break your self-esteem

Everyone talks of the “Freshman 15” like it’s a horror story you’re forced to go through. So what if you’re a stress-eater? You can eat as much as you want, college is a stressful transition and that’s ok because it’ll help you develop as a person. But something that can help you throughout your entire life is to make healthy habits in college that will carry over into your life beyond college.

When I came on my first tour of Western, I fell in love with the Health and Wellness Center. I loved how many people were around to help me figure out what all these shiny machines were for and how I should use them to get their full benefit. One of the first things I did during New Student Week was take the rock climbing safety certification class so my friends and I could rock climb whenever we could! The glorious rock climbing wall and boulder

One of the most important things, I think, to keeping healthy in college is to set healthy goals for yourself and then make it a habit to achieve them.  What I had to do was to block out periods of time in my schedule so I wouldn’t plan anything in its place. This gave me no excuse to NOT go work out.

Something that really helped me is to enjoy being healthy. Obviously, no one will stick with something they don’t like doing. How does one force themselves to enjoy working out, you ask? Well, I borrowed a whole bunch of mix CDs from various people and had my iPod full of music that was brand new to me! It’s amazing how fast time can go by when you’re busy judging each song. If I started to get bored and wanted to talk myself out of stopping my work out early, I plugged my headphones into the machine and turned on the TV. Trying to find a station with something good to watch took up half of my remaining time! If, after all of that, I was still wanting to quit, I started giving myself pep-talks in my head. It may sound strange, but talking to yourself definitely works!

The glorious rock climbing wall and boulder

Something I like to remember when I start grumbling about staying healthy is that once I have these healthy behaviors as habits of mine,  I won’t notice the effort I put into them and they will be easy to do! Then I can set new goals! Why wouldn’t I want to be healthy when I have so many options to help me get there?

Let's go for a swim!
Go for a swim!?

By Gabrielle Boyle

2 comments on “Using WOU’s Health and Wellness Center to fight the “Freshman 15””

  1. I love this post! If you read my “About me” section on my blog, I write about how I became so interested in fitness and health and how I got to where I am now. Long story short, it was gaining “the freshman 15” that made me turn my eating habits around and start exercising. Now I consider health/fitness one of my hobbies, and even foresee a career as a personal trainer and/or health coach. So gaining the 15 made me change my life around and helped me find something that I really want to do with my life. And trust me, I didn’t waste any time changing my lifestyle after I realized I gained weight. I’m only a sophomore in my second semester now, and I’ve lost the 15 and then some!

  2. Eating healthy, and keeping in shape is something that will help you as you age. Those that make healthy choices are the ones that have less problems when they get to their “Golden Years.” So starting a healthy eating and exercise routine now, while you are young is a great idea to help you enjoy a long and fruitful life.

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