Truthfully, the gym-buddy idea has never worked for me. I always end up with one of two people.
1) They don't really want to workout, they just want to hang out. They sabotage any workout plans because they don't want to admit that they just aren't interested in going. or 2) They expect me to be their personal trainer. They want me to tell them what to do, when to do it, and how many reps they should do. So I end up spending the entire time standing next to their machine helping them.
So I find it best just to go solo; I'm much more motivated that way and I get a lot more done.
11/18/2012 1:28:13 PM
I think that this study is insulting. While I have joined the Spark community to make healthy changes in my life, I understand that thin does not equal healthy. There is already a fear cultivating around our "obesity crisis" in America and this only contributes to the prejudice that heavy people face each day. You can not catch "fat" and although the article doesn't outright suggest it, it only contributes to this issue of fear and prejudice.
However, I will admit that the company you keep also creates a positive or negative culture in your life.Yet, I don't see many articles on people who have friends who drink too much and so they may become alcoholics. I don't chose my friends by weight , but I will tell you those I have that are heavy are very active.
7/13/2012 4:27:46 PM
Just started a hiking group and it is growing...fast! So much fun to do as a get-together, great idea
i think its true to a certain extent. i do agree that environment affects what you do and the ppl in it. but then there are also your tendencies. I think thats why it may be good to not hang out too much with certain friends. they just zapp it out of you. but on the other hand if you do still hang out with friends who aren't coducive to ur new lifestyle, its good to get your support elsewhere, like sp.
As with all articles, they are here to enlighten us in different topics that will inspire us to think and look at things differently. They are just guides and should be leaving us thinking how we can look at things in a way that will help us change the things we need to change. Society changes daily. You have to just know who you are and where you want to be, make a life plan for yourself and do your best to stick with it. Whether or not my friends are overweight or skinny, make no difference to me. And, yes I might divulge in eating that I wouldn't normally when around them, but that is MY choice. Knowone forced the spoon to my mouth and said eat it. It was my choice. This article is telling us to make good choices and not always follow the lead of friends and family. Keep yourself in check and do things in moderation. Wonderful article and I enjoyed the fact that it showed us a different way of looking at why we can end up obese. :)
I honestly have never thought about that and that makes a good point. I'm going to try these tips I did not realize that all these things around me could be a contributing factor to my weight. Not saying that its the reason but the words "lifestyle change" are becoming so much clearer to me now WOW
I find that my friends are pretty much the only reason I ever go out to eat or drink. I've made attempts to curve that group habit with more physical activities - but unfortunately, the majority of them don't WANT to do active stuff. My suggestions to do outdoor activities are inciting groans now. At least the at-home dinner parties have fewer calories (and cost less). I guess it's time to diversify the friend circle some more.
The basic premise of the article is that we pick up habits from the folks with whom we associate. It's true! How many parents have worried about -- and talks to their kids about -- the "kind of friends" you choose? We're all human and we're influenced by others around us. It's great for me to focus on my own healthy lifestyle choices, and I love to be a good influence on others. But this article just points out that the unhealthy lifestyle choices can also be a negative influence. We see it in families, and in groups of associates. I have to say that when I'm healthy, moving, active . . . that people who can't (or choose not to) "keep up" tend to drop off/ That's their choice, too.
When I smoked, I would never, ever light up around non-smokers, because it made me feel ashamed. Smoking was what I did with my smoking friends. And, I'm sorry to admit, we really did sabotage each other's efforts to quit. One friend eventually refused to see me until she had completely rid herself of the habit. I was so ashamed that I followed suit pretty quickly. It's a pretty common story with lots of behaviours, from cigarettes to alcohol to food.
Anybody who thinks they're not influenced by the people around them, or thinks that it all comes down to personal will power alone, doesn't understand group dynamics.
6/19/2011 11:09:35 PM
Postcript: The word "MAKING" in the title is just a lead-in, an attention grabber. The article nowhere states that we have no choice and that our friends are 'creating" us. In fact, it states just the opposite. We can take positive steps that will reverse the trend in our social circle.
6/19/2011 11:06:44 PM
I felt a little sad reading some of the pained responses to this article. It seems like some of us might feel a little scared of being rejected as a friend because of the truth found in it. I think most of us know at heart that it makes sense, but it's hard to face, particularly if we've been discriminated against before. Yet, it is so vital not to allow ourselves to resent realities because they hurt our feelings. I have personally experienced this particular statistical reality several times, when moving cities or social circles. I am driven (and facilitated by their good habits) to get thinner when I am with thinner friends. They make comments on my choices and kindly but frankly confront me on them. They are also very physically active, and if I want to be with them, I need to keep up. These factors are all possible with overweight people, as well, but outside of places like SparkPeople or other programs, it seems rare. Conversely, I excuse myself and feel "relatively thin" when I am with heavier friends, even when my own weight starts to creep up. It becomes easier to gain weight, because so many of our activities involve food, and they often are not interested in my new "exercise kick". I see them eat dessert each meal and feel it is only natural and right to do the same. The positive takeaway from this article is that, no, that is NOT an excuse! Yes, we are still responsible for our own behaviors, provided we become educated and conscious of them. Once we "know better", we are obliged to help ourselves. And others! That is why we are all here at SparkPeople. Anyone here is taking steps to do just that. Bravo! Not ALL overweight people are currently inactive and overeat. But barring disease and health crises, the majority of overweight people have gotten there through bad habits, which spread easily. 1 Cor. 15:33 says, "Do not be misled. Bad associations spoil useful habits." In this case, it's not the actual associates who are bad. It is the habits.
Regardless of all our qualms about beating peer pressue, there have been multiple scientific studies to reinforce this type of thing. It's not a difficult study to perform, and it can be applied to pretty much any social behavior from dialect to crime rates to food to smoking to drinking. It may sound like bogus, but peer pressure exists. Having chubby friends makes it more ok for us to be chubby. Call it what you want, but statistics don't lie.
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