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Losing weight with your honey is not always sweet

A few years ago my husband and I decided to go on Weight Watchers together. It seemed like a great idea: We both had some pounds to shed, and doing it together meant we had built-in support and agreement on which foods we would eat -- and which we'd bar from the house.

It was fun at first, and we both lost a couple of pounds right away. But then things got kind of ugly, at least for me. Why was he losing so much more weight than I -- and so much faster -- even though he was eating way more food than I was? Of course I was happy for hubby and proud of his achievement. When I didn't want to strangle him.

The harsh truth, as I write in this week's "Eat, Drink and Be Healthy" column, is that men generally lose weight more quickly and easily than women. Their larger frames carry more lean muscle mass, which makes them burn more calories. And, my sources tell me, they tend to hunker down and attend to the job of losing weight in a more determined, focused way than women do.

For some people, such as those who take part in the Biggest Loser: Couples series, the sense of competition, even with a loved one, might boost their motivation and drive them to work harder at losing weight. I wish I were one of those people. I just felt a bit defeated; it wasn't too long before I was ready to give up.

Have you tried losing weight with your spouse or partner? How'd that work out for the two of you?

On Twitter? Look for me and the other Local Living writers at @wposthome/local-living. And keep track of my "Me Minus 10" effort to lose 10 pounds before I turn 50 at

By Jennifer LaRue Huget  |  March 23, 2010; 7:00 AM ET
Categories:  Family Health , Nutrition and Fitness , Obesity  
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Hi Jennifer -- yeah, btdt. My DH weighs a good hundred pounds more than me, and is one of those guys who looks at a weight and builds muscle, thinks about dieting and drops 10 lbs, etc. (not to mention spies a sunbeam from afar and turns gloriously brown as I turn beet red, sigh). Sometimes I hate him. :-)

But here's what worked for me: focus on percentage body weight. We both did a diet challenge last fall, and I was perpetually a little frustrated when he'd snack every night and still drop 2 lbs in the week, and I worked my butt off to drop 1-1.5. Happy for him, of course, but envious that it was so comparatively easy. But the challenge we signed up for was based on percentage body weight, not overall pounds -- and much to my surprise, I actually won it!! Even though he had lost @ 40% more weight than I did, he only came in maybe 4th or 5th overall.

Posted by: laura33 | March 23, 2010 8:40 AM | Report abuse

After a spike in my blood pressure in mid-November, my doctors advised Weight Watchers. I do Weight Watchers for Men online--and on my iPhone. Key is weighing and measuring--and also downsizing portions to realistic sizes. There are also filling, low-point foods which you can fill up on--like strawberries, melon, green vegetables, etc.

I've lost approximately 30 pounds from my mid-November high. My other half, on the other hand, does NOT watch his serving sizes, uses a free app called Lose It that doesn't work as well, keeps on eating fatty things, and has gained weight.

Posted by: carlianschwartz | March 23, 2010 1:42 PM | Report abuse

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