You can’t open a newspaper these days without reading something about rising levels of obesity in America. You know that eating right is key. You know that you have to exercise. But how can you convince your spouse?
Many people tend to grow more sedentary after marriage. Between work and family commitments, fitness just falls off the priority list. People typically work long hours, then come home to chores. They want to spend any free time relaxing, not going to the gym.
You can help your spouse and his or her way back to an exercise regimen with a few simple tips.
Talk about it. Is there a particular reason for not exercising? Is there an injury involved? Often just communicating can help you find the right ways to encourage your spouse to become more active.
Do it together. Find an activity that the two of you can do together—a competitive match of tennis, a long bike ride by the beach or just a brisk walk after dinner. You can enjoy some quality time together and get your heart rates up.
Find an activity your spouse likes. Although this seems like a no-brainer, finding an activity that your spouse enjoys is critical. Is your spouse the type who likes competition? Or is a more low-key social activity preferable? Help your spouse find an exercise pleasurable enough to return to again and again.
Prove it works. Some people can be very results-oriented. They want to see that the exercise is making a real difference in their health. Help your spouse maintain a chart or diary that records losses in weight, cholesterol, blood pressure and other key indicators. But most importantly, your spouse must make the decision to exercise. If you nag, your spouse is more likely to let his or her physical health slip. Gentle encouragement goes a long way to getting your spouse off the couch and on the road to improved health.