The phenomenon of the Freshman 15 carries a load for some students and does not prove to be a myth. For the unknowing freshmen in college, weight gain is seemingly inevitable. Everything between new schedules and changing metabolisms can be to blame for the weight change and overall poor health.

Weber State University has many resources when it comes to wellness and combating the Freshman 15, including the Student Wellness Center.

“When you start college, that’s when you begin developing habits,” said Kimber Harding, the student wellness coordinator. “If you develop good wellness habits in college, you tend to stick with those throughout the rest of your life.”

College being an environment where students have a variety of dining options and little time in between classes and studying, stress management can become an issue.

“It’s important to maintain balance while attending college to begin your life in a healthy way that isn’t weighed down with stress,” said Chloe Hess, a WSU freshman. “Set manageable goals for yourself and stick to those goals. This will lead to good habits that will be helpful for the rest of your life.”

Freshman Veronica Kelly said she thinks staying healthy will help make the transition into college life a more positive experience.

“Changing your food habits and putting exercise in your daily life changes a lot about you,” she said. “Being healthy is important because it skyrockets your positivity and optimism, confidence, strength, and puts you in a zone of going out and pushing yourself to do something good for you.”

Staying healthy and keeping up with school is a balancing act that freshmen and other students alike must learn to juggle.

“The whole idea of wellness is holistic in that there’s a number of factors that affect your wellness,” Harding said. “It’s not like if you lose 20 pounds you’ll automatically be well. That’s a good goal to have, but there’s more factors than just weight that affect wellness.”

To emphasize the point of holistic health and balance, the Student Wellness Center has launched a new website with a wellness wheel. The elements of wellness on the wheel are environmental, intellectual, emotional, physical, social, spiritual and occupational.

“These are all different aspects that influence our own personal wellness,” Harding said. “The challenge of wellness is balancing all of these. This is where the Student Wellness Center can help, and other resources, such as the Stress Relief Center.”

To motivate students to be healthier, the Student Wellness Center has a new incentive program called the Weber Well Cats program. Students who attend 20 on-campus wellness activities can receive prizes and will be entered into a raffle for a larger prize. Harding said that although 20 might seem like a large amount, the program is inclusive of all aspects of wellness.

The Student Wellness Center will also be moving to a new office in Wildcat Center 210. Here students can take advantage of the incentive program, receive free one-on-one wellness coaching and ask any questions concerning wellness. More information is available at the Student Wellness Center’s new website, www.weber.edu/studentwellness.

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