Editor’s note: Today, we continue our weekly series intended to arm you with the tools and information you need to start on the path toward better health and fitness in 2012. Find special health and fitness coverage every week in Life.
It is not what we want to hear today: Love can make us gain weight.
The so-called “love weight” describes scientific findings that relationships bring extra eating and weight gain.
According to a study by the Obesity Society, young women who were dating gained an average of 15 pounds during five years; women who were cohabiting, but not married, gained 18 pounds; and the newly married gained 24 pounds.
At the same time, the “obesity is contagious” study published in the New England Journal of Medicine reports that if one spouse becomes obese, the other is 37 percent more likely to do so as well.
“There is the component of working out to attract people, and then meeting someone and letting regular exercise fall to the wayside,” says Josh Bowen, quality control director of personal training for Lexington, Ky.-based Urban Active Fitness.
But fear not.
There is hope this Valentine’s Day.
“Instead of dinner dates, find activities that get you moving,” says Bowen. He urges couples to get involved with workouts that interest and challenge both of them.
To combat weight gain this February, Urban Active at the Greene Town Center in Beavercreek is offering a free personal-training session for couples or a free seven-day pass to the gym for single people.
And to further inspire couples on this day of romance, Bowen shares three strength-conditioning exercises they can do together:
Partner-assisted pull-ups: If you can’t quite do a regular pull-up on a bar, then let your partner hold your feet and help give you an extra push to complete the rep. Aim for eight to 10 pull-ups. “If you can do more than that, then that is great,” says Bowen. “This exercise targets the back and arm muscles.”
Medicine ball throws: Sit on the ground with your knees bent and feet elevated off the floor. You partner will gently throw a medicine ball to you on the floor and then you will throw it back. Bowen says this exercise is great for core conditioning.
Body weight shoulder press: Sit in a chair or on a bench — or a stability ball for a greater challenge to the core — and start with elbows in a 90-degree angle with palms facing up. Your partner will apply pressure to your hands, while you try to extend your arms. “This works the shoulder joint,” says Bowen, also targeting the triceps and deltoid muscles.
For details, visit www.urbanactive.com or call the Beavercreek location at (937) 427-0700.