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College Student Dedicates Summer To Weight Control

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DURHAM, N.C. — A lot of people joke about the freshman 15, but for many college students, weight gain is no laughing matter. One young man decided to dedicate his entire summer to getting his weight under control.

Ian Winograd will be a junior at Boston University, but this summer, he is taking a crash course in getting his life in shape.

"I was living such an unhealthy lifestyle. It was ridiculous," he said. "I party a lot. I'll be honest with you OK."

When he was not partying, Winograd was eating at all hours of the night. He realized if he kept this up, he would not live past 50.

"I'm doing it twice, three times, four times a week," he said. "Let's be honest. I have a lot of plans for the future and leaving this world at 50 is not one of them."

Winograd decided to do something pretty drastic for someone his age. He left Boston to spend the summer at

Structure House

. He liked the program's emphasis on the psychological reasons people eat.

"What leads you to eat, not just don't eat," he said.

Besides the physical weight, he brought a lot of emotional baggage.

"I thought I was physically unattractive and that's what weight does to you. I had no confidence in myself," Winograd said.

Winograd said being with other people struggling with the same problem inspired him. The guy who claimed he did not care about exercise now walks an hour every day on the treadmill.

"On top of that, I do a walk in the morning," she said.

When he arrived, Winograd weighed 345 pounds. He is now at 297. Besides looking and feeling better, Winograd discovered just who he is.

"I weigh now what I weighed at the end of my freshman year in high school," he said. "I'm becoming a much more vibrant person."

When Winograd goes back to Boston, he said he is going to join a gym and is working with the school's dietitian to plan out his meals.

"I honestly believe in my heart for the first time that I can go back home and keep to it," he said.

Structure House officials said they have had an increase in college students enrolling for the summer this year. Most are not from the Triangle area. Four weeks at Structure House costs around $8,000.


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