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bringing your partner along with you to training and workoutSo, you’re getting yourself in shape, and you want to bring your partner along with you.  How do you do it?  That’s a tricky one.  People are all very different with different sensitivities, so trying to tell your partner that you’d like for he or she to lose weight is a fine line to walk.  Then there are the details: How will you both work this into your schedules with work, kids, community commitments, etc.? But first things first:

1.  Breaking it down.

More than likely, your partner already knows that he or she needs to lose weight.  People aren’t blind, but love is supposed to be, so how do you tell someone you love that their weight is an issue?  You hit at the heart of the problem: their health.  That’s where the concern really is, right?  Sure, getting fit and losing weight will change the way a person looks, but the most important changes come in their health.  Losing weight reduces the risk of heart disease, diabetes, high blood pressure, certain cancers, fertility problems and a host of other issues, and this is the point you should stress when speaking to your loved one about losing weight.  The healthier they are, the longer they’ll live and the more time the two of you will have together.  Not only will you have more time, you’ll have more quality time–healthy, happy, able to do what you want and not be held back by weight issues time.

After you’ve had the talk, start some new habits.

2.  Dump the junk.

Buy less and less (or no) junk food at the grocery store.  Replace the junk with healthy snacks like fresh fruits and veggies.  Add more fresh veggies and lean meats into shared meals, and replace unhealthy ingredients like butter with healthier options like olive oil.  Eat at home more than you eat out.  Make meals together, and make that time relaxing and fun by turning some music on, inviting friends over, etc.  Plan some activities for the two of you (or the whole family) to do together: go for a hike or bike ride, or sign up for Boot Camp classes or personal training sessions together.  Studies show that people who train with a partner succeed in their fitness and weight loss goals 95% of the time, so buddy up and get healthy together.

We recently spoke with a doctor who said that her patients who are trying to change their lifestyle by eating right and getting more exercise fail most often because their partner is not supportive.  Be supportive–but don’t coach.  Encourage, but don’t push.  No one is going to commit to losing weight and getting healthy unless they want to, and oftentimes pushing too hard for that positive change can push people right off the track to health and into the cookie aisle.

3.  Be the change.

A friend recently confided that her husband didn’t like that she was losing weight because he said it made him feel old and fat beside her.  That’s his problem, in truth, but it could quickly become her problem, if he can’t turn it around.  It’s often said that we are as old as we feel, and getting healthy and staying healthy will keep you feeling younger.  You’ll have more energy and want to do more, so bring your partner along with you.  His or her insecurities don’t have to become yours, but your newfound confidence and overall activity level could influence them to make some positive changes.  Include them as much as possible.  Reach out and give a hand up, but remember that you can’t drag them along kicking and screaming.  In the end, how they feel about themselves is their issue to tackle.

Maybe the best way to get your partner on a weight loss journey is to make the whole endeavor a partnership–just like your relationship.  Support, encourage, be a cheerleader.  If you need help, come see us!  We can set you up in some great classes together or find a trainer to work with both of you.  Want to support each other but have different fitness interests? We can handle that!  One of you can try Vertical Training while the other hangs out in Boot Camp, and you come together again when it’s over to regroup and relax.  Ultimately, losing weight is about getting healthy and enjoying life; take the chance to show your partner how much more you could enjoy together if you’re in it together!

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