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Husbands?!

Discussion in 'Female Health & Fitness' started by Talynn, Feb 2, 2012.

  1. Talynn

    Talynn Member

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    I'm new here. :) I've posted in the newbie forum a little.

    I wonder how many of you ladies have had husband issues with body building. My husband really supported me at first, but now that I've really gained a lot of muscle and low body fat, he has made it clear he doesn't like it even though I told him it's a temporary goal that I be this "cut". I wonder if me being so fit makes him feel less of a man...? Any other ladies with "husband" issues? What do you do? He said he thinks I'm being inconsiderate of him now! What do I do? Stop shooting for my goal and gain body fat or keep going? I've told him it's temporary! I'm so frustrated I want to open the jar of PB!!! Aaagh! ;-(


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  2. sudy

    sudy Active Member

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    Hi Talynn :)

    I think that his reason for objection could be a number of things.. even things that I haven't considered. It may be that he doesn't find muscly women attractive, or he may object on a reproductive level, or he may feel that he should be stronger than you (the pre-programmed hunter gatherer thing). I think it would help you if you ask him to tell you exactly what he dislikes of the idea, then you can have a real discussion about it.
    In the first instance, some men don't like fat women, some men don't like skinny women, some men don't like muscly women, some like big boobs etc. Now as he's your husband, I feel he should love you whatever you look like, though I'm sure some will disagree with me on that topic.. he may not find you as attractive as before though, just like he may not if you were putting on loads of weight. Personally I think you look terrific.
    If he objects on a reproductive level, you should be aware that dropping to such a low fat percentage puts you at risk of being unable to have children, amongst other possible risks that I don't really know about. If that's his objection then his opinion should carry a huge amount of weight in your decision.
    If his objection is that he's not as strong as you are, I'd say this is fairly minor by comparison and he can rectify that by getting stronger and healthier himself.
    Sometimes it's the fear of the unknown too, expecting the outcome to be much worse than it is. Hmm, I realise I haven't been much help here though, lol. Sorry.
     
  3. Robert2006

    Robert2006 Active Member

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  4. sudy

    sudy Active Member

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    *pre-programmed hunter-gatherer/protector* that's what I meant to write earlier.

    The other thing I was considering is that some men and women break up with their bf/gf/spouse after getting in great shape, so maybe that could be troubling him too.
     
  5. BJ

    BJ Active Member

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    Question for you... what kind of shape is he in?

    When I first started my fitness journey, Michelle (PDCA in the forums) was very much against it when I started getting results. I think that was more because she was insecure with herself than because she found the results I was getting unattractive.
     
  6. Zilla

    Zilla Well-Known Member

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    I've been through similar issues off and on through the years even though my goal isn't body building specific.

    I'm speaking from experience with the following, so take this advice for what it is worth.

    No, do not let go of your personal goals in the name of hubby not seeing things the way you do. If you allow that to happen, in time not only will you not be happy with yourself, but it will also cause alot of resentment, a problem that I continue to struggle with today.

    The best thing to do would be to have a conversation with him about it and really listen to his answer. This isn't always easy to do when a person has their hackles up and may cover the real issue under things like "I hate weight lifting!" or something along those lines. If you should be given such a "empty" answer, then it would be fair to ask for a more specific one as you can't work with such reasoning. For example- If he feels like your training is somehow taking time away from the two of you, it could be something as simple as changing your routine around a bit so that he doesn't feel like he's being deprived of such time. Have a date night or the two of you could do something active together. Go for walks, go the gym together, ect.

    Yes insecurity can be a problem, however, guys in general don't like to talk about such things. If you were to come out and ask such a question, the odds are high instead of getting a honest answer it will be turned on it's head. I've done this and it didn't go well. Instead of hubby giving me a yay or nay answer, it lead to him picking fights about things that had nothing to do with the subjct we were talking about.

    What I did to get out of the vicious cycle was made him part of the process. My hubby isn't a big fan of the actual work that goes into lifting weights, but he did take a interest of how a person goes from fat to fit, so I involved him in that aspect of it. We talk about things like nutrition labels and what they mean, the importance of eating several times a day and why it's important, ect. As dumb as all of this sounds, I've found that not only did his insecurity issues go away, but he eventually figured out that what I was doing was not easy. It requires hard work and sweat equity, something he can relate to in other ways so eventually in his own mind he connected the dots.

    Had he just told me to begin with that all he wanted was to be involved in some way, we could have easily avoided years worth of battles, but he wasn't willing to be straight with me, so I had to figure it out on my own.

    It's fair to say that I haven't allowed this cat and mouse game to carry over to any other aspect of our lives for if I did, I wouldn't be here. He knows that if he can't keep it real with me about any other problem, then he should keep it to himself until he's big enough to be a adult about it. I'm not a mind reader and I'm not going to nag him to death if he has something on his mind that he insists on holding on to. Along those lines, I won't tolerate his temper tantrums if he's got something on his mind and it makes him mad. If he gets mad at me for something, he needs to deal with it. If somebody at work pisses him off or whatever, he also needs to deal with that. I'm always willing to be a sounding board, I will not however be a whipping post.

    Make sure hubby knows that he still rocks your world and that he's king of castle. Be genuine, try to keep your cool when he complains and with any luck, he'll tell you what his real problem is. You may end up having such conversations more than once, but as long as he's talking, you can figure out what to do with what he's telling you as time goes by. And finally, don't isolate yourself when issues like this come up. You can always come here and discuss such issues as it's important to have support.
     
  7. Talynn

    Talynn Member

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    He's not fat or skinny, but the afterwork beers are starting to give him a belly which he doesn't seem to think is there. He does do some upper body weight training once a week or two. He's not super in shape but not terribly out of shape.

    I think for one thing, our kids have made comments that they'd "be more afraid to get in a fight with me," and things like that... Downplaying his manhood. :-( I've been a little flaunty about my progress, just being so excited and proud I suppose, and I wish I hadn't now. Prolly didn't help. I thought he'd be happy for me.

    When I first started working out and running a lot, he'd make "jokes" that I was cheating on him just because I cared about looking good and getting fit again. That almost seems like his own insecurity. Mind you, I was in terrible shape. I had just come through recovery from years of drug and alcohol addiction and smoking. It was a huge contrast all the sudden.

    He said he's not as attracted to me now, and is labeling me selfish! it's frustrating because I'm almost to my goal. Maybe a month away! He went to a recent 5k I ran (and I did SO well :-D ) and he said my cheeks were sunken-looking as I was running into the finish line. I know that's partially cause I lost an extra lb just for the race as well as was scrounging for a breath! I don't look like that all the time! It's also one of the downsides of low body fat. I have explained to him so many times I plan to add body fat once I reach my goal state with body building.

    Thanks so much for the input on this. I really need all the advice I can get. I'm feeling so upset about this, and feeling roadblocked from this new passion I have by the man I love is killing me. Do I really have to choose?


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  8. Talynn

    Talynn Member

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    Zilla: Sounds like you've had your share of it. So far, he's just made comments here and there. Like why I have to eat different or why I won't gobble down snacks with him on weekends or why would I want to "run around" outside. Just small things until last night when he almost started an argument. So I guess I'll see if he will talk about it tonight.

    This absolutely could lead to long-lasting resentment. I'm pretty sure he has a clue as to how damaging it would be for him to push me out of my goal.

    I keep encouraging him to sign up for the gym at work which he keeps forgetting to do. I have hopes that would help. I always try to either have all my workouts done before he comes home or do some while he's getting ready for work. So they don't really ever take our time away.

    You'd think he'd find a way to be patient with me and just let me do my thing for now. What's one more month? Thats what I told him. Then I'll go up to 17-19% BF, I said.

    Thanks for the support. It feels so good to know there's somewhere I can go to talk about this! :-)


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  9. Zilla

    Zilla Well-Known Member

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    My hubby used to tell me that I would look like a gorilla if I lifted weights. He hasn't said or suggested such things in a long time, but at the time, it did get under my skin and I allowed it to gnaw at me. Both reactions were my own fault as what I should have done was called him on it and asked how he came to such conclusions.

    If he came at me with such accusations today, I'd do two things. First I wouldn't dignify his name calling with a response, then I'd load up YouTube so he could see for himself what happens to women that take steriods and allow him to marinade in that for awhile. The reality of my dropping fat compared to some of the women on YouTube are stark contrasts from each other. Sometimes not saying anything says alot more than actual words.

    I can't tell you what to do as you know your hubby better than anybody on the internet does. You've overcome some really serious stuff and found a healthy outlet. He needs to understand that if not for himself, then for your kids.

    Whether he owns his beer gut or not is his problem, not yours. He needs to put up or shut up in that regard. Whether you say that or not is up to you, I tend not to sugar coat things. It's one of my many character flaws...
     
  10. GranolaGirl

    GranolaGirl Member

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    Hi Talynn....I agree with Zilla's suggestions.
    To me it sounds like good ole insecurity on your husband's end. My X-husband was hugely insecure of my ambition. As I was trying to better myself he was trying to pull me back down. He used to call me selfish too. He should have known that comments like that only served to encourage me. We just grew apart. SO....for me.....divorce took care of all my husband issues. Now.....that's not what I am saying you should do but, a loving spouse should be supportive of your endeavors. Your not hurting anybody by pursuing bodybuilding. As Zilla said you will have to have a pow wow with hubby.

    Also, getting down to low body fat won't render you infertile for the rest of your life. I also don't believe anything I read that says it's dangerous for women to get that lean. Those articles just make people feel better about being overweight. By all means DO NOT stop pursuing your dreams. Strong, buff women are beautiful and sexy. Maybe you could both attend a bodybuilding show and see if that changes his perspective.

    And Zilla, nothing wrong with being direct.
     
    #10 GranolaGirl, Feb 4, 2012
    Last edited: Feb 4, 2012
  11. boots

    boots Well-Known Member

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    As the husband of competing natural figure pro, I understand the issues. Almost every time I found myself having a problem, it came back to some form of insecurity on my part. Change is never easy, especially when change was oiled up, wearing a shiny bikini and surrounded by guys who look much better than I do!

    I got over it really quickly, since I love how she looks and how good she feels about herself. Honest communication is the key. My wife did her part by letting me know how she feels about me and where I stand.

    One other observation, getting too lean (under 16- 17% body fat) isn't attractive to most guys. Most of us are hard-wired that way. I leave it to researchers here to explain why.

    Good luck!
     
  12. Talynn

    Talynn Member

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    Amazingly it seems my husband has not only resolved the issue with himself but also admits to feeling guilty now for what he said. I've been getting comments nonstop about how sexy and cute he thinks I am. Now I'm a bit confused, but maybe it's like some of you have mentioned where he realized his issue with me stemmed from his own insecurity or fitness. He's a very jealous husband, and maybe he's insecure about the attention I get now. Regardless, something has resolved in his mind, and I feel back on my mental track!

    I do see where very low body fat and well-toned muscles on a woman can be unattractive or intimidating to a man. So I did address to him what my intentions were to try to ease his mind. And as mentioned, I'd never look like a steroid-driven woman builder. So...

    I still have to constantly explain to him why I won't eat that processed pizza or the dripping greasy burger. He still scoffs but yet gets all the "strange" foods on my grocery list! ;) I've told him that's not gonna change, so quit trying to change how I choose to eat healthy! It's like how a drug addict always wants someone else to try drugs. Weird. Why care?

    It's sad how family or spouses work against each other so often, especially when one is trying to better themselves.

    All the comments and suggestions here have offered so much and also helped me understand so much.

    It's definitely a journey I didn't foresee taking!


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  13. Zilla

    Zilla Well-Known Member

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    I wanted to ask how things were going yesterday but I didn't want to pry, so I opted not to.

    I'm glad to hear that hubby is coming around.

    As for the food thing, learn to ignore the "noise" about it. He wants you to eat the way he does so he can feel better about it. Judging from your post, you have dodged this trap. Good for you! It is highly annoying to have to explain the same thing over and over again to a adult, but if that's what you need to do, so be it. Eventually he will give up, but for now, he's testing the proverbial fence.

    My hubby has never played the food game, but I did draw a line in the sand about it. If he wants to eat junk, he can do so. However, if he stuffs himself with something that makes him not feel so great, I don't pay any attention to it. He can whine and complain and I just look at him with a raised eyebrow. He knows what the raised eyebrow means and stops complaining as in this house a raised eyebrow in this case means "Talk to the paw, Dude! Your problem is self-inflicted!"

    As for the rest of it, I wish I had a answer, but I don't. Instead of trying to figure out why it happens, I've settled for well-drawn boundries.
     
  14. HevyMetal

    HevyMetal Well-Known Member

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    He is insecure because:-


    The hotter a guys' wife looks, the more he has to worry about other guys' hitting on her or some guy getting to her.

    Many older guys are happy that their wives are overweight and fat, as then there won't be many guys interested in her.

    Some guys have "trophy" wives just to make other guys jealous though.
    A lot of these guys don't give a darn about the wife....they just want other guys to drool. That's what gives them their kicks.
     
  15. macdiver

    macdiver Well-Known Member
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    It is not just husbands, a lot of the guys have had the same comments from wives, girlfriends, and family members as they get in shape. Things like, don't get to skinny or don't get to big and become a muscle head. Most people don't like to see other people succeed because it makes them look like failures. Planet fitness is making a fortune off of this thinking. "We are the gym for people who only want to pretend they are getting in shape"

    Just keep doing what you are doing and let him come around.
     

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