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Exercising, Dieting, and Reconsidering Women Who Do The Same

December 10th, 2010 Leave a comment Go to comments

I’ve talked before about dating women who go to the gym almost obsessively and how though I appreciated their efforts, it gave me some sort of complex.

For a long time, I worked out from the comforts of my home, but I only did the type of exercises I thought everyone did. They were the typical push-ups and sit-ups, nothing more, nothing less. As it turned out, those workouts were effective, and I did start to see some results, but that was almost four years ago, and I only kept it up for probably eight months.

Then, when I was in a relationship with a gym rat, I joined the gym too, only to stop going two months after. Once the gym sessions stopped, working out from home altogether stopped, and for about two years, I let myself go.

But this year, since October, as anyone who reads my process updates knows, I’ve been on a new health and fitness kick. I’m eating differently, exercising six days a week, and it’s made a huge impact on not only the way I feel physically, but it’s also affected my thinking about a lot of other things, including the kind of women I would like to date.

Sometime within the last week, a reader wrote to me and asked if I would ever consider dating a woman who was pretty in the face, had all the assets of a woman men love to grab onto, but could also stand to lose 50 pounds.

I re-read the question to make sure I read it correctly. Fifty pounds? As in, 5? 0? As in the number after 49?

There was a time when I would have said yes if only because who knows how she’s wearing those 50 pounds. I mean, it could look good on her. I know the phrase “stand to lose 50 pounds” doesn’t sound appealing, but I don’t know how those pounds are being fleshed throughout her body, so I would have considered, blindly, saying sure I would date such a woman. I know this much, I certainly would have never flat-out said I wouldn’t date a woman 50 pounds overweight.

Now I feel differently and I attribute a lot of that to all the exercise and dieting I have gotten into. I still say any woman who can stand to lose 50 pounds can still look good with the 50 pounds she has. I’ve dated thick women in the past, women I know other men might write off as too thick. It’s not been a problem for me because 1) I’m a face man, so if a woman has a pretty face, I’m in and 2) if the woman carried her weight with confidence, I was definitely all in. As a matter of fact, some of these women didn’t go to the gym which made me even more comfortable, because hey, I didn’t go to the gym either.

Where I have an issue now with dating a woman who can stand to lose 50 pounds now is in her willingness to do so. In other words, if a woman knows she can stand to lose 50 pounds but isn’t focused about doing so, I can’t date her. I can’t date women who continuously crash diet. I can’t date women who say they need to get back into the gym but constantly don’t go to the gym.I knew I needed to workout and get back on my exercise kick for a long time, but I certainly never spoke on it until I started doing it.

Ever since I’ve changed up my eating and adopted an exercise regimen, I realize one of the things that’s necessary in maintaining consistency is having people around me who support my efforts full stop. What does support mean exactly? Well, it means things like when we go out to eat and I elect to have a side salad instead of french fries, I don’t get judged. It means when I say I can’t spend the night because I need to get up in the morning to do my morning workout, I don’t get sneered at. It means, if I say I’m not trying to drink alcohol, I don’t get written off as someone who is boring and doesn’t want to loosen up. It means, not telling me how it’s okay to break my diet a little bit because what it’s really about is “moderation”. It means, if she says she is doing something similar, she sticks with it.

The diet thing for me has been especially tricky. On my own, it’s hard for me to cut out all the breads, the pastas, the sugar, and all the other great things I like to eat. Trust me, I’ve now been eating raw broccoli and hummus long enough to know, it does not taste better than some Utz Barbecue potato chips. So if I’m already having a hard enough time staying away from the unhealthy snacks, why would I want a girl who contributes to the difficulty by loosening up the rules she gave herself?

What it all comes down to is having the discipline to accomplish whatever goals we have made for ourselves. Now with my dieting and exercising, I don’t have any specific goals in mind, and there wasn’t any life changing event that made me want to change things up. I simply woke up one morning, looked in the mirror, didn’t like what I saw, and decided to do something about it. As I tell everyone, this wasn’t some New Year’s resolution, when I started changing everything up, 2011 was still a couple months away, and my birthday passed a couple months before I started.

Now that I’m on it, I don’t want to stop it, and so we’re all clear, I’m definitely not searching for someone who is on the same kick I am. I’m still working out from home, but with the help of my trainer (shout out to Brandon Carter), I now have an effective regimen, rendering a gym meaningless. Therefore, it doesn’t mean I’m over at some 24hr Fitness looking for women who are hitting the treadmills. I could honestly care less if a woman I date goes to the gym or works out or diets. As a matter of fact, women who do diet annoy me, but that’s probably another post for another time.

But if I do date a woman who says she does any one of these things, what I’m looking for is not the physical results of her efforts, but her ability to focus on doing the things she says she does. So if a woman tells me she can stand to lose 50 pounds — hell, if she tells me she can stand to lose five pounds — I fully expect her to do whatever she needs to do to get it done. Even if she looks good with the weight that she has, what never looks good is a lack of follow through.

The Process: All that being said, even though I’ve worked every day and will continue to do so until my day off (Sunday), I must admit, these workouts this week have been lackluster. But at least I can do some pull-ups now! When I started I could only do 0. Z-E-R-O.


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  • maxfab

    For some reason when I read this what popped into my head is “could you date a woman who has an eating disorder?”

  • Kae-Toya


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  • Sharelle Ivy Manansala

    Okay I’m probably gonna ramble, because this totally hits home for me…

    “It means, not telling me how it’s okay to break my diet a little bit because what it’s really about is “moderation”. ”

    RIGHT ON THE MONEY for me. It wasn’t JUST the lack of support from my ex that made me leave, there were many other things, but one of the reasons I had to make a decision to leave is the lack of support or belief that I needed to be healthy.

    “Babe… I think you’re beautiful just how you are.” As cheesy sweet as that is, that doesn’t cut it for me… because if I gain back 60 pounds, would you still be sexually attracted to me?

    I work out on a daily basis… shoot, I might be lightweight obsessive but I don’t care. I’m not one of those girls looking to meet someone at my gym and show off, nor am I the girl to try to lose my weight to meet someone or impress anyone. The workout is my natural high and in the long run, I’m doing myself a favor by keeping up on this healthy lifestyle. They say once you hit 30, it goes downhill from there… so if that means you’ve had a million health problems (relating to diet) BEFORE then, shouldn’t you have the drive to take care of yourself? My ex didn’t have that drive.

    It strikes a nerve every single time ANYONE would tell me that it’s okay to break my diet just because I was eyeballin’ someone’s chocolate cake. I would never tell people to stop doing anything he’s passionate about.

    Just like you, I want to be with someone who has a goal and sticks to the script and allows me to stick to mine. I remember when I was dating a different man, I was on the same daily workout and I was at my leanest and strongest. 3 years into the relationship, I let myself go and I gained 60lbs. When that relationship ended, not only did I lose myself, feel like myself… I didn’t even RECOGNIZE myself anymore. That was a real low in my life. At the end of the day, if the relationship doesn’t work out– I still need to remember who I am. You fall for someone for who they are, and their lifestyle– you wouldn’t want them to change who they are would you?

    Also, MOST couples from how I see it tend to fall into similar routines the more serious they get. They start picking up little habits from each other. Hey, that could be a good thing— can also be a bad thing. To look REALLY far into it, say I wanted to have kids one day… you can’t tell me it’s okay to feed them Happy Meals every day. Not happening. You pass down your lifestyle to your children too.

    I think in one of your Poppin Questions podcast, someone spoke about their significant other gaining weight and they found themselves less attracted to them. It’s true… when you lose yourself from the person you were when I met you, it’s unattractive. Also, I don’t know if it’s happened to you, but being healthy for the past 9 months has made me disgusted seeing people eat junk food… that also means, if you’re my man, overweight and unhealthy and I see you stuffing your face with a McRib sandwich… believe you aren’t getting any action later that night!

    Don’t get me wrong, I love me a man with some weight on them too, but it doesn’t hurt to stay active and healthy… even if that means just maintaining the weight he already is.

  • eleanorew

    I’m not a gym rat but I’m in great physical shape and I like the way I look and feel. I make it a point to eat well and be physically active. There was a time I would have said that the guy I date can do whatever he wants in that regard, but I don’t think that anymore. After dating one than one guy who wasn’t in shape, couldn’t keep up physically, didn’t want to walk, bike ride, whatever, I realized that he was cramping my style. Here’s what I think now: everybody in this relationship has got to be fit (more or less). If you have a lifestyle that put you in a situation where you have 50 extra pounds, then we’re not right for each other.

  • Christina

    No matter what your post is about (and whether I agree or not lol) I ALWAYS love how you end your posts 🙂 I even used some of your posts as examples in my writing class!

    “…what never looks good is a lack of follow through.”

  • Anonymous

    Promised myself a long time ago that I will accept people how I meet them. If they appeal to me I take them as they are and not concern myself as to whether they can stand to lose 50 pounds, eat healthier, get a better job, speak better or any of the myriad of changes we sometimes want to ascribe to those with whom we chose to be involved.
    I am in decent physical condition, I am committed to a healthy lifestyle but I am far from every woman’s cup of tea. So I make it simple, deal with people who appeal to me on the level on which we connect. Life is filled with transitions as we move from one stage to the another we align ourselves with like minded people hoping to make our journey more pleasurable.

  • lily

    trainer is hot

  • CorettaJG

    I understand and agree with this post. Follow through is definitely essential, especially in this area, and so is the support of the team. I, too, recently woke up and decided today is the day to seriously work on my fitness. I’m all about what can be done at home (not a huge fan of the gym). Thankfully, my job gives me the opportunity to do it during the day so no excuses.

  • Cali

    I’m one of those people who’s needed to work out forever, has serious gym bouts on & off, never really maintained a good fitness level for any significant amount of time. Finally got sick of being unhappy w/ my body – changed my eating habits a few years ago, been steady @ the gym (6 days a week) for almost a year now. I still feel like a newbie since I have yet to maintain this regimen for a really long stretch BUT I agree that when I meet somebody, his fitness lifestyle will definitely be a consideration.

    Its been hard for me to get going, & though I haven’t been tempted to stop this round (b/c I love the results I’m getting), I always fear letting my gym card get dusty again. If his preferences are for fast food or lots of soul food, we’re gonna have problems – I don’t eat fast food & limit soul food to special occasions. If he doesn’t work out, he’ll be irritated that I go to the gym so often. I’d love to find a dude that would walk down with me, he does his workout, I do mine, we eat something decent after. Hopefully it won’t be so tough to find. What WILL be tough is finding time to see him w/ such a full schedule, but that’s another topic. Maybe once I get to where I wanna be (another 10lbs) I can cut it down to 5 days & have a bit more free time…

  • Brittany House

    I love your trainers intro vid! He seems like a straight up ‘hood dude that is passionate about perfecting the body. Great post. I went through something similar. I briefly but intensely dated this one guy and lost a ton of weight and was feeling great. Once we broke up I went back to my on and off again high school sweetheart and gained it all back. After learning and monitoring my mistakes in that I know now that I have to be with someone who has the same health goals or it eventually won’t work.

  • 2true2u

    Very good perspective on the topic. I can appreciate it.