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February 13, 2009

Healthy Lifestyles: When Your Sweetie Doesn't Sweat

As you can see from our posts this week, love is in the air these days. But relationships are always a tricky combination of contradiction and compromise. How can they affect our motivation to maintain a healthy lifestyle? A recent article in the New York Examiner got me thinking about how a significant other can influence our fitness goals. Maybe you go running together and keep each other on track. On the other hand, maybe your partner doesn't exercise much or is always bringing junk food into the house.

Taking responsibility for your choices is a first step. You don't have to eat the bag of chips left over from the Superbowl party or your husband's stash of candy bars just because they're there. Marsha recently wrote about resisting temptation through mindful eating and tuning into our own hunger. But if you do go for the candy bars just remember, it's your choice, not anybody else's.

Next, "how about focusing on the positive ways partnerships can help you on your way to successful weight loss," writes Examiner dietician Nicole Anziani. "In terms of exercise, this can be a fun way to spark up your relationship." And there are plenty of ways to get fit as a couple other than rocking the treadmill side by side, romantic as it sounds. Anziani suggests dance classes, a walk with the dog or taking up a team sport.

If you have different fitness routines or your partner is still a couch potato, workout with a friend or take it as your alone time to unwind. Just be sure to make it clear to your significant other that physical activity is a priority for you and you'll need their support to stay healthy.

See also: Jane Black's fascinating article about couples with different eating habits in the Washington Post.

Photo by banalities via flickr.

Posted by Emily on February 13, 2009 | Permalink


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