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Freshman 15

Updated on June 19, 2013
HLKeeley profile image

HL Keeley has received a Bachelors degree in middle grade education. She is currently teaching high school.


Myth or Reality?

Freshman 15 has become a national term for incoming freshmen to learn. Is it simply a term to frighten freshmen or a warning?

Incoming freshmen were the seniors, the top dogs, of their high schools. Many have intimidated the new freshmen. The seniors wanted to have respect and what other way to get respect from someone by scaring them? This shows that they have power at the school. What the freshmen in high school do not understand is that it has become a ritual. They too will become seniors and scare freshmen because that is what is expected. They have went through the past three years growing into this mind state that they are better because they have "more experience" of high school.

So, when going into college they prepare themselves. When learning of the Freshman 15, of course they will be weary of it. Why would the college seniors not try to frighten them?

First, college seniors do not care about the freshman. They are more focused on getting their classes done for graduation. On campus you really do not even know what level of college they are in. So freshman 15 is not to frighten freshman,

It is a warning. Not everyone get freshman 15, but it is good to keep in mind when eating on campus.

What is Freshman 15?

Freshman 15 is most commonly referred to the weight gain of 15 pounds your freshman year. This is when students use the fast food options more than the cafeteria option. It is when they do not work out.

Freshman 15 though also is reference to losing 15 pounds, but not through conventional ways like eating right and working out. This is when the stress gets to you. You stop eating to get your work done. You do not sleep well because your stressed about an exam or homework.

Freshman 15 though is usually seen as weight gain.


Causes of Freshman 15

There are many reasons how Freshman 15 occurs. Yes, it is by eating genius, but why do people eat more than when they are full?

  • Stress. Stress eating is one of the worst. It gives the illusion that you are starting to feel better when in reality it is not doing anything except triggering happy cells.
  • Boredom. You will get times when none of your friends want to hang out and you have no homework, so you pop a movie in and eat buttered popcorn. This is not bad for once in a while, but boredom can be a long time.
  • Depression/Sadness. Like stress, this is done to give the illusion of "feeling better." You are just eating your feelings.
  • Freedom of Food Choice. Without your mother there to tell you not to eat snacks or even cooking, freshmen like to go out to eat to get "good food." This can be excessive and even become a routine of midnight Taco Bell runs.


How to Prevent Freshman 15

Freshman 15 stays with you after your freshman year. If you continue with your eating pattern, most likely it will stay.

  1. Know your options in the cafeteria. You can get freshman 15 from the cafeteria as well, but here the options are somewhat more healthy and you control what you eat.
  2. Portions. It is okay to eat fast food once in a while, just skip the large options.
  3. Prevent Soda intake. If you stop drinking soda, you will lose weight faster. Soda is like fast food, once in a while.
  4. Gym. Going to the gym for an hour once a day helps as well. It will maintain your current weight or help you lose weight.
  5. Avoid bad snacks. The freedom to buy whatever you want from Walmart or convenience store without your mom nagging you really is in effect here. Snacks are good when studying or throughout the day, but try to stay away from the chips and get an apple.
  6. Walks. Whenever you get sad, bored, or lonely, just go for a walk around campus or down the road. This will release the stress and clear your mind. It also gives you time to just think without distractions of a roommate or people in general.
  7. Take a health class. These classes are sometimes mandatory. They teach you what is good to eat and how to exercise.
  8. Cooking class. I wish I knew how to cook, but I do know how to count calories. Cooking your own food is usually one of the best ways. Check to see what dormitories have a kitchen ready for use.

Avoiding the Freshman 15 is really eating smart. You are an adult now. Freshman 15 is a warning that your eating habits alone are unhealthy. Freshman 15 does not happen to everyone. My freshman year I lost 15 pounds, but then gave up on the gym and gained it all back.

The best part about Freshman 15 is that you CAN lose it. I am trying now to do this as well, but if you can prevent it, it is so much easier than trying to lose weight. It is all about the power of the mind!

What do you think Freshman 15 is?

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    • ThoughtsWriter profile image


      4 years ago from America

      This is definitely a real thing. WATCH OUT!

    • mattdigiulio profile image


      6 years ago

      Ah, The Freshmen 15. That number has ascended in the last few years (Senior Year now)... and it's a hassle. But my diet is back on track, the workload is easier, and I'll be hitting the gym again one of these days. This is a great hub. Nicely done, voting up.

    • HLKeeley profile imageAUTHOR

      HL Keeley 

      6 years ago from Charlotte, NC

      I used to wake up at 6 to go to the gym before my 8 am, but I found the best times to go were between classes. I eventually grew bored of it, but there is always time to sneak in some gym time. No one really wants to. LOL

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      It is hard trying to exercise, especially when you have homework to do and papers to write. I find the best time to go to the gym is in the morning, that way I can knock it out first thing in the morning. The only hard part is actually getting out of bed.

    • HLKeeley profile imageAUTHOR

      HL Keeley 

      6 years ago from Charlotte, NC

      Oh man! I feel ya. I lost 15 and then gained it right back. Then gained another 15 sophomore year. Hoping for a different Junior year. :)

    • Jbern117 profile image


      6 years ago from Dunmore, PA

      I wish I got the freshman 15... I got hit with 30!


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