Relationship weight gain certainly isn’t a new phenomenon. It’s often joked about on social media, in television/movies and especially our inner circles. And to some extent, it certainly makes sense.When you start a new relationship or undergo significant life changes with your partner, it’s only natural for your normal habits to get altered a bit.
Yet according to a study published in March 2019, it appears that weight gain is more of a problem than we may think, with 79 percent of participants reporting it. In fact, the survey showed that participants in long-term relationships gained an average of 36 pounds since the beginning of their relationship, while daters gained an average of 15 pounds over five years. The numbers are even higher for cohabitants and married couples.
So do you really have to sacrifice your health to be in love? Certainly not. Consider these lifestyle tips for your relationship to manage your weight successfully and long-term.
Relationship Tips to Ward-off Weight Gain
Try Something Different for Date Nights
Instead of going out to the movie theater or a restaurant for date night, where there’s easy access to alcohol and high calorie meals and snacks, switch-up how you spend your special time together. Consider taking a painting or pottery class or go for a scenic walk in your favorite part of town. Attend a show or tag-along with each other during your favorite activities.
Staying active as a couple is a great and healthy bonding experience. Whether you’re doing date night at the gym or going walking, cycling, swimming or bowling together (or even with friends), try to incorporate more movement into your relationship. This will also get you off the couch and off your phones for a more productive and rewarding time spent together.
Cook Healthy Meals in Your Kitchen
It’s easy to get lost in your busy schedule and wind up eating out or grabbing something from the drive thru. However, making a pact to plan your meals in advance and make grocery shopping a team affair can help both of you reap the benefits of good nutrition. Plus, you’ll save money!
Be Mindful of Your Pantry Staples
You might be trying to snack on foods like apples, carrots and hummus, but there’s not much you can do if your partner has a box of cookies open in the pantry. You can’t exert control over what someone else eats, but you can be mindful of the foods you share.
Communicate Your Health Commitment
Talk to your partner often about your commitment to health. They may not realize if their behaviors are sabotaging or if you’re struggling with how you spend your time together. Set aside the time to communicate frequently about your challenges, goals, etc.
Maintain Your Own Healthy Identity
Even if your partner isn’t committed to the same healthy lifestyle, you’re still entitled to yours. You can always choose to sacrifice “together” time in favor of “you time” — whether it’s a trip to the gym, a yoga class, time spent with friends or a stress-relieving activity.
Work on Managing Stress Together
Prolonged stress is a recipe for weight gain. If you find that you and your partner are going through consistently stressful situations, try breaking the mold by doing cathartic activities together. Take more date nights, work in your yard, get out more on the weekends and exercise.
For additional tips on navigating relationships through weight management, CLICK HERE.