After Craig Cunningham had open-heart surgery, his doctor told him to start walking and eating more healthfully. He did, with significant thanks to his wife, Pauline. The Murrysville, Penn., couple started walking around their neighborhood, and working out several times a week at their local YMCA. They eat more vegetables and seafood, instead of fattier foods. They have kept up the healthful routine for several years, and both have lost weight. "It's a lot easier, I'm sure, when both people are doing it," says Craig Cunningham, 72. Without his wife, he says, "I wouldn't have been as determined. She's sort of the driving force. ... I feel I would have slacked off if she hadn't have been around." Losing weight is a difficult task. Having a companion -- partner, family member, or friend -- significantly helps people reach their dieting and fitness goals, experts says. This is especially true for couples who attempt to lose weight together, rather than only one partner trying it solo. "Of course, the obvious answer is that they do much better, absolutely," says Laura McCue. She is a registered dietician in Natrona Heights, Penn. "If they come in together, you know that they want to share this as a joint venture. They're not going to be trying to sabotage or outdo the other."
Couples tend to stay on track longer because of each other's support and accountability, McCue says. When only one-half of a couple is trying to diet and get in shape, the one who isn't interested could undermine the other's efforts. A team effort works more harmoniously.
"With two of you working, there's more stamina, and more motivation to do what you're supposed to do," she says.
Pauline Cunningham, 72, says that supporting her husband's weight-loss efforts helped encourage her own, too.
"You're more motivated if somebody's doing it with you," she says. "As we've gotten older, both of us have tried to be a little more health conscious."
Cathy and Mark Piper, 52 and 55, respectively, started Weight Watchers together last August. Since then, Mark is down 64 pounds, and Cathy is down 42 pounds. The Delmont, Westmoreland County, couple credit the team effort for their success, which also includes an exercise program.
"It's been wonderful doing it together, because it's really hard if you have to cook differently for someone else," Cathy Piper says. She still aims to lose about seven more pounds. "We're a good support for each other. We just are on the same page. ... You have that person to talk to when you want to cheat. ... It just makes it so much easier."
Bill Jones, 59, says his wife, Gretchen, 58, always has been a fitness enthusiast, while he has been more lukewarm about it. The Franklin Park couple now are pursuing healthful eating and exercise together diligently. "I didn't do any organized exercising. I used to use the excuse that I play golf," says Jones, chief financial officer of the YMCA of Greater Pittsburgh. He works out with his wife at the Baierl Family YMCA in Franklin Park, Penn. In the past five months, He has lost about 20 pounds. "Doing things together, I think, is important," Bill Jones says. "I think it gives you something more in common, to really just live a healthier lifestyle, and just feel better about yourself." Lou Rocco, 38, of Greensburg, Penn., recruited his entire family to join his diet and fitness efforts. Five years ago, when Rocco says he was overweight and out of shape, his father, Bob, gave him his old road bike along with a serious challenge: Prepare for a 150-mile, two-day bike ride for multiple sclerosis in just 30 days. Rocco accomplished this feat with his dad and sister, Bethany. Then, he recruited his wife, Karen, 40, for other charity rides. The family continues to do them regularly, and exercise in other ways.
Now, the Roccos' kids are joining the fitness fever. Their son, Joey, 10, plays ice hockey and has done a kids' triathlon. Even the younger kids -- Nick, 5, and Rebecca, 3 -- have started doing yoga. Meanwhile, the Rocco household's diet contains no white starches, and very little meat and sweets. The group family effort made such a difference, Lou Rocco says. "It went from my dad, sister and wife, and it trickled down to my three kids," he says. "I really count on my wife's support, big time. I really couldn't do a lot of what I do without her. It's really a team effort, and it's completely rubbing off on the kids." Team Tips If you and your partner want to diet and get fit together, both of you are more likely to reach your goals, experts say. Consider these pointers. Reward yourselves together every time one of you hits a goal.Split restaurant meals when dining out together to cut the calories in half.When eating at home, use only small salad plates to cut down on portion sizes.Make exercising together a habit.Play physically active games together, like basketball, racquetball or even Frisbee.Agree on a diet that's healthful for both of you.Be considerate. Don't torture each other if one of you can eat pizza and the other can't.Don't criticize and hover over each other's diet, unless you've both agreed you want that sort of oversight.Consider your motivation. Losing weight is part of a plan to stay healthy and be around for each other for a long time.Encourage each other. Tell your partner that he or she looks better in jeans.Take photos to track your progress. It's hard to see weight loss when you're together every day.Don't compare weight loss. Men tend to lose weight faster. Source: www.100bestdatingsites.com