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10 Tips for getting your couch potato guy off the couch

Sandy Smith is a food writer, editor, recipe developer, and pastry chef. She lives in New York's Mid-Hudson Valley with her awesome family of painfully honest, unfailingly supportive taste-testers.

Ways to motivate your man to sweat

If your man prefers the couch and potato chips to breaking a sweat and improving his health, you’ll need to be cunning in motivating him to move – we all know couch potatoes are hard to convince that sweat is better than sweets. Don’t despair, here are 10 tips for getting your guy to work out with you. After all, a healthy couple is a happy couple.

Happy couple running

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Don't be too helpful

The last thing your reluctant exerciser wants from you is unsolicited suggestions on how to improve his form, even if you do have a personal training certificate. Unless physical injury is imminent, step back and bite your tongue. Your guy will learn as he goes – and have a better time doing it if he isn't being told what to do.

7Keep your fitness prowess in check

Save your showboating for workouts among your fitter peers. Now is not the time to work on a speed or strength personal best. In this context, it's not impressive; it's intimidating -- and a surefire way to convince the couch potato to stay right where he is.

8Restrain yourself

You're probably feeling pretty good that you've gotten your loved one off the couch and into a routine of improving his fitness. You might get so caught up in your own enthusiasm that you're tempted to initiate a full-on health and fitness offensive, jettisoning snack foods and talking nonstop about things like VO2 max and KT tape. Show some restraint. Let your beau drive the train. Too much too soon will almost certainly derail your -- and his -- efforts.

9Drop the manipulative tactics

Manipulation never works in the long run. Don't use repeated expressions of concern about your spouse's health, his sedentary lifestyle or (heaven forbid) his appearance to try to manipulate him into exercising. Using guilt as a motivator to get your guy to commit to an exercise program is almost certainly going to get you nothing but a resentful couch potato.

10Don't nag your sedentary man

Nothing inspires rebellion like pestering. Invite your mate to join you, but cut any emotional strings you've attached to the offer. Be patient and gentle. Remember that you don't like to be nagged either, and put yourself in your guy's shoes. As with any successful lifestyle change, a commitment to health and fitness has to be internal. You can't make it for your man. You can only make it easier for him.

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