Our last ‘Something for the Ladies’ got me thinking – about a particular danger of being in a long term relationship – getting porky.
Let’s face it when single we generally make our best effort to look good. There is extra incentive to go the gym, make sure you are wearing the right sort of clothes, get a nice up to date hair cut and have got a good dose of the under arm charm on. Otherwise it all counts against you possibly getting your leg over when you are out on the prowl on Saturday night. But when you are in a relationship you can let yourself go. You know that even if you are looking a little chubbier, your partner still loves you and will still be up for a little action once you’ve both finished watching the latest episode of which ever TV series you happen to be addicted to.
There are a bunch of factors working against you and working to increase your waistline. You are less active. Much easier to have a comfy night in than go out dancing and much more tempting to have a lie in and a snuggle than haul yourself out of bed to go to the gym. You eat more, spending more time at home. Much more temptation to snack to your hearts content all weekend and have those extra servings to help you feel even more cosy. Also you have a partner in crime – if you are both getting a little more porky it is both your best interests to probably keep mum. Add to this the fact that couples actually have more sex than single people and you are getting the strong message that all these indulgences are helping your pulling power.
Personally, I put on 10kg (22 pounds) before I even really noticed and started forcing myself back to the gym and to pass up that extra serving of yummy dessert. When I asked my fiancée why she hasn’t said anything she replied it was because it made her feel better about putting on a little weight herself. The cynical part of me wonders if helping your partner put on a few pounds also adds a bit of security in the relationship, after all there is nothing less attractive than a paunchy middle aged man. Far less of a flight risk than a toned fit gym addict.
It’s happened to pretty much all my friends who have shacked up on a long term basis – even one of my mates who is a professional acrobat, and uses his body every day for his profession has not been immune to the porkifying properties of a long term relationship. The only couple I know it hasn’t happened to are certifiable exercise junkies, who on group holidays are up at the crack of dawn going jogging and then can be seen in the pool doing laps later in the afternoon. Exception that proves the rule I think. Oh dear, perhaps we just have to resign ourselves to the porkifying effects of long term love.