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Friday, August 12, 2011

Quick! I need some advice, stat!

Here the hubby and I are at La Alhambra in Granada
I hope that got your attention. It was supposed to! Now, on to the serious part: I need some advice.

I am not one of those people who has a hard time asking for help, so this is nothing new. I do like to think that I'm pretty independent. Plus, I'm definitely stubborn and set in my ways when it comes to certain things (food, exercise, running, my things...). So get ready, because this one is a doosy.

I've had no success in the past 3 or so years I've been attempting it. That's a long time in my opinion, and the years keep rolling by. This has to work because I'm afraid of the ramifications!

How can I get my husband motivated to exercise?

He's lucky that he has a fast enough metabolism. If I ate like he did I would have gained 50 or more pounds instead of the 20 or so he's gained in 5 years.

I ask for help only because my husband (Chema) is not content. He is definitely NOT depressed or ashamed of how he looks. But he makes off-hand comments sometimes like: I'm fat, my gut is humongous, I need to lose weight...

We're fancy, huh? At a bar in the US.

So, obviously, he's not content. Chema doesn't like to ask for help. I mean he is married to someone who loves exercise, would gladly go with him running anytime of the week, or to the gym, or whatever. Yet, he doesn't do it! He is the KING of excuses.

My husband is a bike person. I fear bikes. Hence, that's not a sport we can share at this point in time. But he can go by himself, right? No.

  • It's a lot more fun with someone else
  • He doesn't feel like it right now
  • He has to run some errands
  • He's tired
  • He just ate
  • It's raining
  • It's too hot .....

I'm literally looking over my shoulder as I write this so that he doesn't see my post! (We have to keep this between you guys and me).

In Córdoba having lunch with friends.

I worry because he is a habitual overeater. Like a lot of people, he also eats when he's stressed. Although, I think that's an excuse too! I also get stressed but I don't eat a half pound of chocolate in a day!

In general, we eat healthy because I cook and make the grocery list. But he has an insatiable sweet tooth. When he wakes up in the morning he eats something sweet, right before having breakfast!

Like these truffles or that plate of cookies in the back! Ok, I'm exaggerating.

Sure, he's fine and healthy now but one day he's going to wake up and look in the mirror and not recognize the person he sees in front of him.

We joke about it often. Sometimes when I get serious about it he just agrees and then changes the topic. I need help because I love me some Chema!

La Plaza de España in Sevilla

My solution: ask all you informed and intelligent people out there! What should I do? How do I get my husband motivated to exercise?


  1. OMG-so similar to my situation with my better half! He is tall and slim, and his goal in exercise is to GAIN weight.. but still, he would just complain about it and not do anything (not content also!).

    Regardless of his goals, I believe it is so important for one to exercise and eat right for HEALTH and living a longer, happier life. One day, you will wake up and feel like crap.

    I've tried so may ways to get him to workout regularly, given advise, made suggestions, and offered to workout with him (which we do from time to time), and I've learned it is HE who needs to make the ultimate decision.. and finally, he has. He just purchased the P90X system and is taking control over the situation!

    I am really excited for him and hope he continues on with it.. as it's a LIFE change, not an overnight change.

    I am not sure what advice to give you, but I understand completely where you are coming from!! Do you fear stationary bikes?? Maybe it would be a fun idea to ride one of those together (boring, yes.. but a start!) just to get him moving.. and who knows what that can lead to!

    One small step a day leads to great things!!

  2. Hmmm, this one hits home for me because my husband is the same way! The only difference is he works for FedEx right now so he doesn't need much more exercise. In the 2 years we have been married and 4 yrs together he has gained 20 lbs. But I gained the 50 lbs you were talking about so I can totally relate.
    Here is what I know and my opinion, ultimately I can't call it advice because really its going to come down to "Chema will change when Chema is ready".
    1. He doesn't see the need because he is not really overweight, sometimes it takes a real wake up call before people commit to making a lifestyle change and let's be honest, lifestyle changes suck!! Who wants to give up sweets before breakfast. My suggestion is help him to set short term goals or just trick him into exercising. i.e. take a walk after breakfast while sipping your tea and just chat OR suggest that he bikes with someone else.Also you could try making him think that exercising is his idea somehow.
    2. Sam your intimidating, if I had a wife who was a freakin exercise freak I wouldn't want to work out either, at least not with you. I would be constantly comparing myself to you and I would be so afraid to fail, not to mention it has consumed a large part of your life and he may not be ready yet to give up some other things. Understanding the importance of a balance lifestyle for him may be helpful. He doesn't have to exercise as much as you but something is better than nothing, at least to start.
    3. Lastly, instead of trying to get him to exercise maybe suggest other things that will eventually lead him to see the value of it. Such as dealing with stress in a more positive way. If he felt he had a better outlet than eating then maybe that will cause him to re-evaluate a lot of bad habits.

    Overall though I think the best thing you can do is be patient and non-judgemental. My weight and lifestyle changes have gone on a roller coaster since getting married and my husband has been right there with me with a positive attitude the whole time. I know he says he doesn't care that I'm bigger but I bet secretly he would prefer my old body. Unfortunately I had to be ready and committed to make the change. Otherwise I would have failed as in the past and been heartbroken.
    One last thing, It's fun to want to exercise with our spouse but sometimes we just need time away from each other, absence is healthy too (short ones I mean), so maybe exercising with you isn't right but doing it with someone else. Once you all move suggest ways that he can meet new friends and have those activities be centered around a gym, walking group, coffee shop down the street that he has to bike to...

  3. Fantastic advice!! Thank you both for commenting. What you said made a lot of sense to me! I'm going to try and put your advice into practice. I'm also glad I'm not the only frustrated wife!

    @Brooke: I'm not afraid of static bikes (lol). I actually use one as part of my training. But sparingly because it IS boring! I'm trying to overcome my fear and definitely want to purchase a bike in the near future. So, hopefully, that will also inspire Chema to get out there. I agree that he needs to make the change...I just get impatient! But I'm going to try and change that. Thanks for commenting!

    @Sprina: I'm intimidating??!! lol. I can see where you're coming from. I agree that we need space from each other and that I just really like the idea of us exercising together. But yea, he needs to find his "thing" and do that. Great idea. I agreed with everything you said. You're so wise! Definitely going to keep what you said in mind. It's going to be hard for both of us. But once we move maybe things will be different.