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Health-conscious students plan for the holiday weight gain
Posted Dec. 10, 2008

Junior movement and sports science major Kenneth Chapman will be welcoming a friend from North Dakota State during winter break so that the two can work out and stay fit for football and the holidays.

"My friend is bringing his workout routines and I am too. We'll be playing flag football, " Chapman said.

Many students will be freed from stress after finals week and will be joining their families for holiday cheer, and with that cheer comes a lot of food and the fear of extra pounds.

Besides running laps around the house to avoid the extra holiday pounds, junior MSS major Falisha Ramirez plans on playing indoor soccer and working on her touches in particular.

"We're supposed to watch our diet, but no one ever does. It's really important to work out," Ramirez said.

"For football we eat a lot of food and consistently work out so all that fat turns into muscle," Chapman said. "We can't drink soda or alcohol."

Junior MSS education major Tatiana Gutierrez coaches girls' soccer at Glen Wilson High School in Hacienda Heights and plans to stay fit while practicing with the Wildcats' goalie, the same position she holds at the University of La Verne.

 "It is one thing to tell a player what to do but it is another to demonstrate," Gutierrez said. "So I will be staying in shape too."

Gutierrez enjoys not only coaching but also learning from her students.

While playing soccer in school for the past 15 years it has been easy for Gutierrez to stay motivated with her team but during break she will have to rely on self-motivation.

"We're with family on vacation, there's nothing keeping us in shape," Gutierrez said. "I'm looking forward to the independent free time. It will benefit me."

In order to stay in shape over the holidays, Direction of Student Health Services Cynthia Denne encourages students to do what they ought to be doing year-round.

"Make good choices food wise," Denne said. "Don't deny yourself but don’t go overboard either. It's ok to take a cookie or whatever looks good but maybe not a second or third."

Portion control can be difficult over the holidays but is essential, according to Denne.

Although on break from school, students should keep their lifestyles the same as they have always been.

"With hectic schedules, it is important to make time for daily exercise," Denne said.

Denne suggests to students browsing to get a few helpful tips.

Weight Watchers suggests planning ahead for the holidays.

Their number one rule is not to use the holidays for a reason to splurge on food.

Always eating a health dinner before attending a holiday party and limiting alcohol are great ways to avoid weight gain, according to Weight Watchers.

"Online shopping is a great time saver, but it means you lose out on the mall walking that usually goes with shopping."

Weight Watchers encourages making up for lost cardio by increasing your daily workout by the amount of time you saved shopping online.

Always be on the lookout for healthy ways to live your life but also enjoy the holidays.

Victoria Farlow can be reached at