Losing Weight With Your Love

By Kate Gardner

If you're in a relationship, you've probably gained weight. But you shouldn't beat yourself up about it! A survey conducted by Jenny Craig found that people in relationships gained an average of 36 pounds, with 17 pounds of that gain occurring in the first year of coupledom. Respondents gave many reasons for this weight gain, from eating out to starting a family. But if your partner can help you gain weight, can they help you lose it, too? 

Communication Styles

Having a weight loss partner can be a big help. Knowing how you work with your partner makes it easier to figure out the best way to motivate one another. MyFitnessPal.com discusses the different ways couples communicate about weight loss. Synchronized couples work together and agree on the best way to lose weight. Autonomous couples prefer to do their work separately but are supportive of one another. Couples who are contentious cooperative work together but don't agree on how to lose weight. Lone-battlers are couples who work separately and don't discuss weight loss efforts. 

For most of these couple types, the most effective way to help each other lose weight is to encourage one another, but for couples who are contentiously cooperative, coercion works best. In this case, coercion isn't a bad thing and typically represents competitive banter and challenges. Most couples don't respond well to influence when their partner advises them on the best way to lose weight. I just asked my husband if I do this. Apparently, I do. I'll have to change that.

Pros and Cons

In their article, "Losing Weight as a Couple: Double Trouble or Twice the Determination," WebMD covers the pros and cons of attempting weight loss with your partner. In the pros column, your weight loss partnership can provide you with different kinds of support. Maybe you need someone to hide the cookies so you can't polish off the whole box or maybe you're more likely to go for a run if you have someone to go with. Your partner can also celebrate your successes with you and help you get back on track when you need it. 

In the cons column, weight loss with a partner can be frustrating! If you are a woman and your partner is a man, you may notice that he can eat more and still lose weight and lose weight faster. That can be a bit of a downer if you're struggling. It can also be annoying if one member of the partnership decides to police the other, endlessly commenting on food and exercise choices. 

If you and your partner want to lose weight, encourage one another! You'll both enjoy the rewards of healthier living. 

To learn more about your health, wellness, and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Phoenix, Ariz.

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