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The Couple’s Guide to Getting Fit

by eHarmony Staff

The Couple's Guide to Getting Fit

Serious about getting fit this year? Now that the holidays are over (and all the goodies have been gobbled), lots of people have health and fitness on the brain — and not just their own. If you’re happily hooked up, you may have your partner’s health and fitness in mind as well. Wish he’d eat healthier? Want her to stop talking about losing 10 pounds and just do it? Regardless of what your fitness goals are this year, you’ll be better able to attain them together by following these simple and effective tips:

Tip #1: Set an Example
If you’re trying to motivate your partner to get fit, the single most important thing you can do to get started is set a healthy example. Don’t bother nagging or complaining about his or her bad habits. That may only cause resistance and/or resentment. Instead, inspire by example. Create your own healthy new habits like going to the gym every day, cutting out junk food, refraining from eating after 8 p.m., etc. In addition, start talking to your partner about the healthy habits you’re incorporating into your daily life. Share why they’re important to you, and how they make you feel strong and confident (and maybe even super sexy!). If you’re consistent with your healthy new routine, your partner will see that and most likely be inspired.

Tip #2: Set Goals
The next step in becoming more fit together is to set individual goals. Do you want to lose weight? Lose inches? Exercise daily? Cut out junk food, booze, and/or sugar? It’s perfectly okay if your goals are different. What’s most important is that you identify and share your individual health and fitness goals with your partner so that he or she can help motivate and inspire you to achieve them (and vice versa). As the year goes on, revisit each other’s goals often to track your progress and/or tweak them as needed for maximum results.

Tip #3: Plan Healthy Meals/Activities Together
Getting fit together is about more than just going to the gym. It’s about incorporating healthy eating habits and activities throughout your daily lives. For example, start by making a weekly meal plan together. Encourage each other to stick to it by preparing those healthy meals and snacks together. You can even change your grocery shopping habits from grabbing quick (and often unhealthy) on-the-go snacks during the week to picking up fresh produce at a local farmers market or organic grocer on the weekend as part of your overall healthier lifestyle. And instead of spending your weekends on the couch, plan fun outdoor activities like hiking, biking, skiing, or even just window shopping in your favorite neighborhood. If for some reason you can’t make it to the gym during the week, take nightly walks together. You can catch up on the activities of the day while doing something good for each other. Remember, the more healthy habits you can incorporate together, the more successful you’ll be!

Tip #4: Motivate/Support One Another
Once upon a time, you and your partner might have enabled each other’s bad habits. Whether it was encouraging late-night bingeing on junk food, distracting one another from going to the gym, or any other way of supporting unhealthy habits, those days are over. It’s important to motivate and support each other’s health and fitness goals. Some days that may require a gentle nudge to make a healthier eating choice, while other times you may need to employ tough love tactics to keep your partner motivated and inspired. Only the two of you know what will work for one another.

Tip #5: Communicate
Just as communication is key to the success of your relationship, it’s equally important to the success of your health and fitness goals this year. By sharing both your triumphs and frustrations, you can work together to find healthy solutions. If something’s not working for you or your partner — whether it’s an exercise regimen, part of your new eating plan, or another healthy habit — by talking about it you may just discover a resolution. That’s the beauty of getting fit together. You now have a 24/7 support system to not only help motivate and inspire you but to keep both of you on track when the going gets tough. Keep in mind that when it comes to getting and staying healthy, there are going to be obstacles. It’s important to help each other surmount those hurdles so you can ultimately celebrate your victories together.

There you have it — five terrific tips to improve your and your partner’s health and fitness. By incorporating healthy new habits together this year, you greatly improve your chances of making these lifestyle changes lifelong. Exercise can also ramp up your love life!  Here’s to your healthy new life together. May you live long, love life, and thrive!

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