Friday, September 5, 2008

Fitness File: Allies & Saboteurs

In a previous post, I talked about motivation and willpower as fluctuating internal forces that we need to watch out for when trying to stay true to a fitness regimen. What I didn't delve into were the external forces . . . and some of them are so close to home, they might as well be internal! Our friends, family, and significant others play large roles in our lives. Even the most independent thinkers amongst us, those of us who think we have wills of iron, are influenced by them. Sometimes that's a good thing . . . and, other times? Not so much. For instance, . . . as I've made efforts to get back into shape, my husband has been very supportive, trying to stock our refrigerator with healthy options for meals and snacks, cooking healthier dinners, toiling away in the back yard trying to put together the bikes we purchased, and even going for a run now and then himself. Most days, he shows great solidarity and is my best ally. However, some days, he fights me over things that seem like no-brainers to me, like portions. For instance- yes, an Italian red sauce is a healthy choice . . . but not when you have it on 1/2 pound of pasta, topped with a blizzard of grated Parmesan cheese, and accompanied by 1/2 a loaf of buttery garlic bread.

And I can't claim to be faultless in the diet-and-fitness support department. We each bring different strengths and weaknesses to the table (sorry, pun intended). Matt's portions may be out of proportion, but I'm a sucker when it comes to using "bad" foods as rewards or treats. For instance, Matt really loves Ben and Jerry's Chubby Hubby but can never find it in our local grocery stores. I know we're trying to eat healthier, but when I saw it in the store the other day, I "couldn't help" but buy a pint, weakly justifying it by equating the purchase with showing my husband some TLC. So, yes, I've become "the pot calling the kettle black." I mean, if buying your husband a pint of Chubby Hubby isn't being a diet saboteur, I don't know what is. One might also ask what I was doing browsing in the ice cream section in the first place when I "stumbled" upon it . . . .

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