Hello my dear readers. I know it’s been a WHILE since my last post. It’s been a busy summer — what with undergoing surgery, my sister’s graduation, my brother’s marriage and then my own wedding in August! Phew!! I could say that newlywed bliss is what was keeping me from blogging, but the truth is that I just wasn’t feeling as inspired. But now that the semester has begun again at grad school I’m feeling reinvigorated to write and share all the amazing things I’ve been learning.
But first, let me share a little story with you. A couple days ago, I was walking back to my apartment when I ran into an old friend. We were chitchatting and she shared with me that she had recently gone on Weight Watchers. After moving in with her longtime boyfriend, she had unintentionally put on a little weight. While I applaud my friend for using Weight Watchers – which I consider one of the best “diets” that is one the market (I don’t even really think I consider it a diet because the program teaches people to adapt a healthy lifestyle) – her problem is not an uncommon one. This predicament is something that I like to refer to as “love pudge”.
According to an expert at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, it’s common for newlyweds to gain up to 10 lbs after tying the knot. So what gives? Why do newylweds or even people that have recently moved in together put on weight? While I can’t speak for everyone, after D and I first moved in together 2 years ago, I definitely experienced the “love pudge” phenomenon. While I could be perfectly happy with a big salad or veggie stir fry for dinner, D’s go-to dinner is 1 lb of pasta with 1 lb of chicken served up with lots of veggies and spinach. Preferably eaten in a bowl resting on his stomach while he watches music documentaries on Gene Simmons or Monday night football. Super healthy of course for him, but not the best for me. After a couple months of “love pudge” – I decided to take matters into my own hands and establish some ground rules that we both could live with! As a side note – these suggestions can be used by anyone trying to cohabit healthily, obviously not just for weight loss!
1) Make meals that you both can eat. D and I have perfected the art of making meals we both can enjoy. This often involves separating the carbs from the rest of the dish (I have an insulin sensitivity so I watch my carbs, esp at night). For example, we’ll make everything that goes in a pasta – sauce, veggies, chicken – and I put it over arugula or spinach while D puts it on pasta. Or we make a grilled fish with roasted veggies and D will make couscous or brown rice on the side. We both enjoy something healthy but make it work for our respective dietary needs!
2) Hide the snacks! D loves a good chip or cookie and who can blame him! While he doesn’t eat them all the time, who am I to ban them from the house??… So instead of trashing the stuff, D and I devised a system where D puts all his “goodies” on the topmost shelf, making it literally impossible for me to reach them without dragging out a stepstool. Out of sight, out of mind, out of my stomach!
3) Team Up. Be each other’s workout buddy. Go for a run, go to the gym together or even take a walk after dinner. Not only does this allow for some good old fashioned bonding time, it will help keep you both in shape! I can’t tell you how many hot yoga or soulcycle classes I’ve dragged D to, sometimes willingly, sometimes not-so-willingly. Having D in the room with me makes me push myself that much harder – because I know he’s watching!
4) Hold the takeout. New York City and takeout food is pretty synonymous. But many studies show that restaurant food is known for added fat and HUGE portions. While I do enjoy a good slice every now and then, generally I find takeout food pretty hard to resist. When D is getting a pad thai craving, he orders his food when I’m not around (traveling, class, etc…). Having discipline is one thing, torturing myself is quite another!
Hope you all have a lovely week! For those of you fasting for Yom Kippur tonight, I wish you a very easy fast! Keep checking back this week for another post from a guest blogger…..