How Much Weight Are You Allowed to Gain After Marriage?
The other day, I was having another pleasant Friday evening eating at the local Fresh Choice, eagerly deciding on whether my next bite of food should be of the baked potato, clam chowder, salad, pizza, or pasta. Decisions, decisions! I like to have them all laid out on the table in front of me so I can cycle through the different choices with each bite!!! Yay!!! After shoveling a bite of baked potato into my mouth, I looked up to see a family of four - the two kids were probably 6 and 8. The dad was a lean, fit guy - relatively good-looking - but the mom had, by all means, let it go. Her hair was pulled back, not for style, but because of laziness; she had on glasses, not stylish ones, but the reading kind that old people wear; No makeup, and her pants could've doubled for sweat pants or cargo pants, couldn't really tell. She had put on considerable weight, that belied her skinny person face.
What struck me the most during the evening while watching them, as I ate my food with child-like fervor, was the amount on disinterest between the wife and husband. I couldn't help but think, this guy probably didn't marry this person the way she looks now. Does he show her no interest - they hardly said a word - because of how she presents herself now? Maybe it was an off-night... It WAS Fresh Choice on a Friday evening, but it also got me thinking - don't we owe our significant others an amount of commitment to our bodies, to maintain that same level of attractiveness during the courtship!?!? Maybe love does trump all, and romantic movies do teach us it's what's on the inside that counts, but I am on the side that says you must stay in shape after marriage.
I want to maintain a lifelong "physical" attraction to my mate, even when the rigors of aging have curbed my sexual urge for three minutes of desired sexual activity a day, to three minutes a week. But it's also about maintaining a healthy lifestyle so that, as a couple, we are still free to do, and have the energy, to be active, go for hikes, ride bikes, body surf, traverse across new foreign lands, and do upside down keg stands. Now, this is not an attack on people who are overweight, some people are just built that way. Plenty of people who are overweight get married - this is more about who you marry from the outset and what happens after. And, don't forget, guys are just as guilty with that bowling-ball, beer belly, leaking over their pants and hidden behind that free-flowing hawaiian shirt. Girls have to tax their bodies and endure child-birth, while guys have no excuses.
My friend and I were discussing this - his girlfriend has gained about 15 pounds since they started dating - and he didn't like the fact that he can't tell her to lose weight. He does, actually, but it doesn't go over well. Is that not a part of an open relationship? Sure, as men, we are taught to always tell a women that she doesn't look "fat in those jeans," but when is being dishonest a detriment to the relationship? How long do you go bottling up the resentment that your significant other is packing on the pounds, while you are still committed to staying in shape and looking good for your partner? Is this the type of dishonesty that leads guys and girls to get divorced, "out of the blue," because there was never an open line of communication or honesty?
I think our childhood upbringing does us a bit of disservice. Being taught to "finish everything on your plate" leads to bad habits in our adult life. We live in a culture that over-serves and overfeeds in every restaurant and fast-food chain. The childhood-formed habit of eating everything on our plates has made America the most obese nation in the world. A lot of people ask me how I stay thin with the way I eat - which is sometimes downright disgusting. It's really not about exercise - which I pursue actively - or about eating right - which I pursue passively - but, more about portion control. I eat out a lot, but I have exercised considerable restraint to save that last 1/4 of my Chipotle Burrito for later, or not getting fries with my burger, or never drinking soda (unless it's with whiskey).
You know how that one Slim-Fast commercial goes, "a shake for breakfast, a shake for lunch, then I eat whatever I want for dinner"? No!!! Eat whatever you want, just cut the portions by 1/4 and then a 1/3! I know it's hard - trust me - I love to eat, but just cut it off before, or serve yourself less on the plate, and pack it away. I see people who come into the gym, who are overweight, and they stay around for a few weeks and never come back. I'm pretty sure it's because they're not seeing much of a change. The problem is that they think they are going to lose weight just by getting into the gym. It might help a little, but you can't continue to eat the same foods in the same quantities and see much of a difference.
So, please, I may not be Richard Simmons or Arnold Schwarzenegger, but I do care about how your naked body looks to your lover - and for me peeping in from that tree branch outside your window - and I want you to look good. Remember, don't force your future kids to eat everything on their plate especially if it's eggplant. You hear me, Ma!?? I'll sit at this table for two hours and not eat that stupid eggplant. We'll see who wins!!! Anyhow, forcing your kids to eat everything on their plate is old school and doesn't fit with American portions and food-fattiness. Also, control your portions, and you can avoid eating healthy or exercising. When you die a sudden death during intercouse, people will be dumbfounded:
Friend: "But Kevin looked so skinny and healthy!"
Doctor: "But his insides looked like shit... medically-speaking. His arteries were that of a fat man trying to break free. On another note, his heart was much smaller than normal. I don't think he ever learned to read or was loved."
Doctor: "Hahahhahahaaha, he WAS a little bitch, wasn't he?!?!"
Once you decrease your portions consistently enough, your stomach will shrink and need less to be satisfied. This is similar to what I tell the ladies I date - "just keep reducing your expectations and you'll grow to love me."
Sustainable travel hacker. 71 countries visited.