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“Do you think I’m fat?”

One of the trickiest things about losing weight when you are in a relationship is  telling your partner it’s time to lose weight. Men are incredibly familiar with the age-old question, “Do I look fat?”, but for women, telling your significant other that its time to lose a few pounds can be incredibly intimidating. Even though they don’t like to admit it, men can be just as sensitive about weight and appearance as women. And, what’s worse is they can be equally oblivious to their growing bellies, leaving you to worry about their long term health. So, what’s a girl to do? I’ve gathered a few tips on broaching the subject gently with your boyfriend or husband.

1. Figure out what’s causing the problem. For some men,  drinking several nightly beers can really beginning to pack on the pounds. For others, you may notice that all he wants to do in his free time is sit on the couch, or perhaps his appetite for potato chips and chocolate cake seems to have grown exponentially. If you can zero in on the behavior that’s causing the problem, you can have a more targeted approach.

2. Check yourself! Is there any possibility that you are making it hard for him to lose weight? When Kevin, my husband, and I first got married, we only saw each other on the weekends, and I always viewed it as a vacation. Kevin bought us pizza, beer, chips, and all kinds of treats and I did absolutely nothing to curb this behavior. In fact, I encouraged it. I could eat healthy all week, and then indulge with Kevin. It took me quite a while to realize that I was really hurting Kevin’s health by not making healthy choices for us. It was up to me to say, “You know what, we probably should just make some chicken for dinner tonight.” Believe me, it was hard to give up those foods, but I knew it was the best thing for both of us!

3. Lead by example. Nothing will make the conversation more tense than if you suggest a new change for your husband that you are unwilling to make in  your own life. He won’t listen to a thing you have to say when you tell him to exercise every day, but you won’t get off the couch. If you want him to start eating healthier, you need to give up those brownies too! Plus, if you can change first, you can show him that it can be done and all he has to do is follow your lead.

4. Bring him along. Once you’ve started going to the gym, or buying healthier foods, you can bring up the topic just by inviting him along. If you say, “Honey, I’m going to the gym again today. Want to come with?” he is much more likely to respond more positively than if you said, “I think you need to lose some weight.” If you can find time to exercise together, make dinners together and be partners in your healthy choices, it will not only improve your health, but your relationship as well!

Good Luck!

-Sara

If you get to try any of these tips out, we would love to hear about it. Have you already tried to bring up this sticky topic? How did it go?

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2 responses to this post.

  1. Hey guys,

    LOVE the blog! This post rang particularly true for me. The thing I’m finding difficult is that neither J or I like to go to the gym (I find weights tedious and difficult, he feels like a hamster on a wheel) and frankly right now we can barely afford rent, let alone a gym membership. He gets the majority of his exercise from either biking to work or playing team sports. This is great for him, especially during the “season” when he will be playing sports several times a week in addition to bike riding. However, there is a “yucky” season when neither of these are great options. Plus, the main point is that it is hard for us to find activities we BOTH like to do, and can do together!
    Our dogs always need walking, of course, so we can do that. Do you think a 3 mile hike 3 times a week if enough exercise to make a difference?
    Any other ideas?
    Thank you!

    K

    Reply

    • Thanks K!
      As far as your health goes, 3 miles 3 times a week is definitely enough to make a difference! Something is always better than nothing. To reduce the risk of heart disease and other chronic diseases, the recommendation is 150 of moderate exercise (brisk walking) per week. If 3 miles takes you 45 minutes, you are pretty close! As far as weight loss or weight management goes, it might help to keep you where you are, but to lose weight, you’ll have to make some dietary changes too.
      Something that works for a lot of people in bad weather is finding a way to work out in front of the TV. You can get exercise videos (although, I doubt J would be excited about that 😉 ) or do your own! What I like to do is a short circuit of body weight exercises. You can do these without having to buy any weights, but if you have some it does give you more options. Here’s an example:

      30 jumping jacks
      15 push ups
      20 lunges

      20 mountain climbers
      30 crunches
      15 tricep dips (off a table or couch)

      Do each group 3 times and try not to take breaks in between exercises. You can just get 10-15 minutes of pretty good exercise in this way, and your strengthening your muscles without having to go to the gym!
      Let me know if you want more info!
      -Sara

      Reply

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