My husband constantly struggles with his weight. His weight is a constant yo-yo of gain/lose 10-15 pounds. He'll get into a good eating/exercise routine and drop weight, only for it to slide right back on. (According to BMI he is 25-30 pounds overweight.)
So here's where I am asking for help... what can I do to help my husband? He is always upset with his weight and self-image. I would like to help him with maintaining a healthy weight and just as important- a healthy self esteem no matter what his weight.
If you struggle with your weight, what things would be helpful for your spouse or SO to do to help with maintaining weight & self-esteem?
Things that I am doing now are:
- keeping only healthy foods at home
- when he complains about his weight I tell him how handsome he is, etc
- ask him to go on bike rides or walks with me
- I never say or do anything negative, even when he is overeating or ordering unhealthy foods at a restaurant
Sounds like you are doing what you can. I'm trying to lose weight and my skinny DH sometimes brings cookies or other junk food into the house which is hard on me but he's getting better about not doing that.
Is he a member of a gym? I was thinking maybe a present of some personal trainer sessions would be good? Sometimes you can get one outside of a gym as well. Another thing I appreciate is when DH agrees to a healthy eating out option like sushi. Honestly though I think weight loss takes discipline and some of is just struggle with it!!
If he is convinced he can get results in an hour a day, maybe he'll be interested enough to commit.
If he is really 25-30 pounds over the max normal weight, he should be very careful with these workouts (modify!) and definitely get a doctor's OK. And he should buy these himself because that's part of the commitment.
I think you are doing a great job of supporting him. Unfortunately weight struggles are very personal, and even with tons of help, it is ultimately up to him to keep his commitments to himself.
If it really bothers him you could suggest talking to a therapist, especially if his eating has an emotional basis. I also know that for some people, reading articles or books about unhealthy food or what being overweight does to your body can reaffirm the commitment to a healthful lifestyle.
It is extraordinarily difficult to help someone have the willpower and committment to sustain a weight loss program or remain at goal. That is something a person needs to internalize; it comes from inside and even with all the support in the world, no one else can make it happen for you. It sounds like you are VERY supportive and positive and helpful. Your positive reinforcement helps more than any criticism ever could. And I think inviting him to be active with you can help both him and his weight loss as well as your relationship. Doing things together is fun and brings a couple closer together. So just keep doing what you are doing. It would be nice if others could do more, but there just isn't anything else you can do.
Of course, I think my DH's weight is perfect, but he was unhappy with it recently. We made some changes, mostly because of his risk of hypertension/hyperlipidemia.
-Asking what he had for lunch that day (this was a big factor in his weight). He gets free lunch at work, so he would eat a HUGE, fatty meal. He was always complaining about being tired in the afternoon, so I *innocently* suggested that he try to eat a sandwich or salad instead of pasta. He made the switch for most days of the week, and he dropped the weight that he wanted to lose.
-We've always eaten healthy dinners, but I recently cut out white pasta, white rice, and white bread. Now, we make side dishes with bulgur, farro, and brown rice. We also eat a big salad before dinner (we've always done this though). I switched us from cream dressings to vinegarette, which I think has helped a little.
-Unfortunately, my DH would rather come home and watch TV than work out. I have to be the motivator for us to work out. Once I suggest it, he wants to do it, but I have to step up and say "hey, let's go for a quick run" which can be hard when I'm feeling lazy.
Thank you for sharing your suggestions and positive words! Your feedback has been great encouragement for me to remain supportive/positive with my husband and continue doing what I am doing. I'm also read through the new ideas and will try to incorporate them where I can.
If anyone else has anything to share, I'm all ears!
I allow myself one big cheat meal a week and for the rest of my meals, I eat very clean and healthily. It helps that I eat breakfast and dinner at home, while lunch is something soupy (but watch the salt, that contributes to water retention). So maybe try the cheat meal so he doesn't feel deprived?
I snack on lots of protein (unsalted almonds, hard-boiled egg whites) and "negative" calorie stuff (raw veggies and green apples, choose fruit wisely as some fruit are super high in fructose which is essentially sugar!).
Good luck and you're such a great wife for being so supportive of your husband.
I think you’re doing a great job in being supportive! Have you ever asked yourself what the exact reasons for him slipping out of his exercise and diet routines are? Perhaps he needs to choose a weight loss diet and exercise plan that suits his lifestyle, personality or needs. It sounds like you are already doing a lot to help him but helping him find something he can stick with might be something you can try. I have been doing some reading and I’ve come across a diet which seems to be working for people, especially those struggling with maintaining their weight loss: it’s the Dukan Diet weight loss diet for men. Perhaps the weight loss plans he tried before did not really appeal to him; they were only a way to lose weight. Try and find something he wants to and likes to do. This way he will be motivated to stay with it.