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Tuesday 16 October 2018

Ask Brian: I'm pretending to go to the gym but I'm really eating cake

Our no-nonsense agony uncle gets straight to the point of your most pressing issues

(Stock image)
(Stock image)
Brian O'Reilly

Brian O'Reilly

Myself and my boyfriend moved in together almost a year ago.

We piled on the pounds since then, a lot of Dominos and Netflix and chill. Both of us work full time and aren't really physically active.

So at the end of last year we both promised that from the start of January we'd kick the junk food and start exercising. 

He's started playing 5-a-side again and going jogging a few times a week. I decided I'd take up a spinning class at our local gym.

The thing is, I hate it, with a passion.

So after nearly dying the first time I went I decided to pack it in, but didn't want to renege on the promise to my boyfriend so soon.

So now two evenings a week I leave with my gym bag, drive to the gym, and then go into the coffee shop next door and get a cuppa and some cake.

I sprinkle some of my bottle of water on my forehead to make myself look sweaty before I go home.

He's starting to lose weight, but I really haven't. I've been blaming my time of the month for holding extra weight but that can only last so long. He'll notice. I've been thinking of faking an injury to get out of it for a while and gain some sympathy.

How do I get out of this?

 

Brian replies:

I don't know anyone who wouldn't choose cake over spinning. Or cake over most things.

But it's not how you're spending those two evenings a week, it's the dishonesty that's associated with it that's the problem.

You gave up on it quite soon, but then group exercise isn't for everyone - some people prefer to go it solo.

The gym and classes can be an intimidating experience if you're not used to it; there's lots of weird looking machines and even weirder looking people flexing while staring at themselves in the mirror.

When you start in January it can be even worse, as the place is always far more crowded than usual. But you should stick it out beyond one class.

If you've both put on weight over the last year it's a good thing that you're both taking action against it (well, he is at least). So I wouldn't give up on the promise entirely just yet.

If you're not enjoying group classes maybe think about getting a personal trainer who can tailor an exercise plan for you - that way you can work away on it by yourself and at your own pace.

In a perfect world, you should probably come clean with your boyfriend about the cake.

I'm a realist and it isn't a perfect world, so the second option is to tell him you're not enjoying the spinning and are going to try something else. 

Or tell him you hate exercise and are stopping the spin class - but your health would really benefit if you take up a different form of exercise.

Whatever you decide, you need to stop pretending you're exerting yourself at the gym, when the only exertion you're doing is reaching for a cream cake. Delicious, nutritionally worthless cream. 

Dishonesty can be cancerous; once it finds its way in to a relationship it can spread.

Once he finds out - and he will - he could question if you've been dishonest with him in other parts of your life, and you don't want to go down that road.

When you're being up honest with him and are actually exercising then you can shame eat cakes as a couple.

A couple that shame eats together, stays together.

 

Do you have a problem you'd like some advice on? Email askbrian@independent.ie  to submit in confidence.

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