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To Love, Honor and Get Fat

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They really should rewrite the wedding vows. Repeat after me: "I promise to love, honor and not gain too much weight."

JJ Virgin: The statistics aren't good when it comes to the latter. Love in the form of a husband or significant other often means a significant weight gain. Studies show that couples gain an average of 15 to 30 pounds over their first five years together.

The problem is simple. You're a team now: He overeats and you overeat. Suddenly, you sanction each other's grazing and your weight gain becomes contagious. He's a guy and isn't gaining as fast, but your female fat-friendly body is suddenly expanding at a rapid rate. Here's another scary stat: Newly married women in their 20s gained 24 pounds in five years, while their guys packed on 30.

It's time to stop the madness. Here are five ways to make sure love doesn't mean double- digit jean sizes:

To Love, Honor and Get Fat

Keep Snacking Out of Your Social Life

When you're dating, you're often rushing off to activities or racing for the bedroom. Couples who settle into cohabitation either through marriage or living together often stay home and camp out on the couch. Date nights are watching TV and sharing a big bowl of chips or a bag of cookies. Stop the snacking!Remember that you're going to eat three meals a day with lean protein, non-starchy veggies, high-fiber carb, and a healthy fat. You're going to be full and you don't need to snack at all. Even if he is snacking, just say no and snuggle instead.

Don't Let Him KO Your Workout

Ladies, work out earlier in the day instead of saving it for night. There's something about the evening when you're tired or you want to spend quality time with your mate that makes it easy to skip your workout. The last thing you're going to do is pull out your running shoes and say, "See you, honey." If you get it out of the way early, it's done and you have free time. By the way ... it's fine to be workout buddies and meet at the gym. But vow that you will work out no matter what he does with his workout ... or lack of one. Make working out with him an additional time to move it, but not your primary time.

Eject His "Friend" from the House

I don't mean his annoying girl-chasing pal Chuck. These are his other "friends." Chances are you're doing the grocery shopping. Ooops, you forgot those Cheetos and didn't buy that box of Krispy Kremes. The bean dip jumped ship and didn't make it to the checkout line. Replace his unhealthy snacks with cut-up veggies and fruit. He won't even miss it and will grab whatever is in the fridge. And you won't have to deal with all those bags of temptation in the pantry.

Don't Let Your Techie Honey Ruin Your Sleep

Men like to believe they're running NASA when it comes to their electronics. Give him a corner of the living room or even a spare bedroom to be Mr. High Tech. Draw the line when it comes to your bedroom which is for sleeping and sex ... period! Don't let him turn the bedroom into a zone where you have a flat screen TV, computer and phones blinking. All of the above will disturb the seven to nine hours of unbroken sleep you need each night. There's nothing worse than watching exciting TV shows or surfing the 'Net before bedtime because it keeps your brain stimulated and makes sleep tough. Toss out the tech from your little sanctuary. The bedroom means hugs and not plugs.

Learn How to Cope with Stress

Just being together in one house brings on a little strife now and then which will make your cortisol levels soar and you might gain weight. Realize that you will need your own relaxation program to cope before it get to be too much. Learn how to meditate or just grab the dog and go for an evening walk about a little fight. Go directly to a hot bath. Practice saying "no" as in, "Honey, I wish I could baby-sit your sister's five screaming children, but I can't." And remember that a great de-stressor is kissing and making up!

next: Is It Safe to Outsource Motherhood?
11 comments so far | Post a comment now
Again October 30, 2010, 10:38 AM

I’m not sure what happened to my last comment, but I know that for myself, losing baby weight is a huge issue every time I have a baby. My husband is super supportive, and I love him for it. I suggest getting someone to help you whenever you need to workout and lose fat!

Laura December 9, 2010, 3:39 PM

Guess my husband and I are definitely above average. I was a skinny girl before we moved in together. I was a curvy bride a year and a half later. Now, three years in, I’m a fat wife and he’s a fat husband. There’s just no other word for it. Wearing size 18 jeans as I type this…except they’re last year’s and I’ve got the snap open and my belly is spilling out. My size 22s are in the wash. Oddly, though, I’ve never been happier. We both absolutely love to eat, so the weight has been a small price to pay. I think it’s even brought us closer together as a couple!

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