This one goes out to all the overworked, overwhelmed, underrepresented and sleep-deprived students fresh out of high school: The freshman class.
The freshman class might have had some of the most adverse effects of this pandemic from a student’s perspective. Not only did the high school class of 2020 miss graduation, prom, senior skip day and their last days at high school, they also started their college careers online.
In 2020 people worked together to overcome COVID-19 with social distancing and mask mandates. However, the feeling of togetherness was sorely missed. Most incoming freshmen get to celebrate their new home for the next four years with festivals, opening weeks, job fairs, parades and an abundance of club tables manned by recruiters trying to get a few seconds of your time.
Instead, the class of 2020 was met with a list of time slots, a max of two people to help with move-in and a dorm you would be condemned to stay in for the next several weeks. A challenging time, but a necessary one nonetheless.
One milestone that COVID didn’t alter for many students: The freshman 15.
Gaining weight coming to college can be very frustrating, especially when you have classes to worry about, relationships, work, a pandemic, all while being alone and secluded in a dorm room.
With everything being online and the majority of the university shut down, DoorDash became a best friend to many. Gaining weight during a pandemic and in college is understandable, especially if you’ve never been through situations where your weight was an issue. So how do you manage to manage a healthy weight during these trying times? Your diet!
When studying, be conscious of your eating habits. Mindlessly scarfing junk food can add up, especially when you’re studying late at night. Be conscious of including fruits and vegetables in your meals, yes, every meal.
Kids no longer have their parents sneaking them vegetables or cooking for them, so going to the dining hall and getting pizza, onion rings and a soda every day might not be the best decision.
Living in a dorm can make it hard to choose what you eat, but a great way to eat better is to keep healthy snacks in your dorms. So instead of going to Walmart and splurging on Hostess treats and every chip under the sun, make a trip to Adli. This is a great option to get cheap, healthy snacks like carrots, cold-cut meats, pretzel crisps, apples, cheese sticks and almond butter.
Most importantly, find outlets for your stress besides food. College can be overwhelmingly stressful, especially when you first come in and have to do online school, something a lot of kids have never done before. Learn what triggers your stress and what you do to manage it. Go on a walk, maybe just do some jumping jacks, but don’t eat an entire bag of cheese puffs. At least not all the time!