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Friends vs. Losing Weight

Have anyone of you felt that you need to choose between your friends and losing weight?

One of my best friends is overweight and doesn't seem to want to do anything about it. I, on the other hand, have begun making better food choices and workng out.

This weekend, my friend invited me out to eat and to the movies (where snacks are inevitable). Instead of the usual hamburger-type place, I suggested a better restaurant with healthier foods or instead of the movies, I suggested we go for a hike or a walk -- she declined me on both parts and ended up not doing anything together after all.

I'm not talking about becoming anti-social or anything like that, but in looking back at my friendship with this girl, I realized that alot of what we do (did) was about making food/alcohol choices.

This weekend got me thinking that, if I'm going to be successful in my weightloss, I have to surround myself with people who share the same value (like what I've found here on Peertrainer).

I'm afraid that unless she changes her lifestyle also, we may drift apart.


Mon. Nov 26, 1:13am

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That's a really interesting question. My two best friends have been gaining weight over the years, as have I, and I've noticed one of them expressing resentment as I have begun to lose. Our best outings have been around food and wine.

In thinking about your question, I'm thinking, you have to live in the world we have, where over 50% of America overeats, so I think you shouldn't change friends. I like the idea of hanging with some new people with healthier lifestyles in addition to, but not to replace your current friends.

I think it would be better to enjoy the same activities with your old friends, and just say no to over eating while doing so. So, if you and your friend love going to movies, go to that movie, but sneak in a bottled water and have less popcorn and don't order candy, even if she does. Go for a hike another time with someone else. Order the salad at the hamburger place, and gradually introduce the idea of taking turns on picking restaurants with her. That way, you can still pursue your new lifestyle, without forcing it on her if she's not ready or willing. Perhaps she'll come around on her own time and own terms. I think dear friends are hard to come by so that's my suggestion.

Monday, November 26, 2007, 6:48 AM

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I think the pp had excellent advice - I would say the same because ultimately its YOU that decides what goes in your mouth - you can still do those things and choose to eat healthy or less of the bad things but still be together with your freinds - then also add some like-minded people into your life. good luck on your journey and stick around with PT for suport!

Monday, November 26, 2007, 7:09 AM

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I think this is an area where a larger budget gives you more options. I have the same kind of friends -- all about food, whereas I am not. We try to go out for tapas or dim sum, where I can eat a bite of each thing, and everyone else can eat as much as they like. However, I certainly could not have afforded that as a student.

Monday, November 26, 2007, 8:14 AM

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Yes. Mine kept giving me grief like, what a salad again? What are you trying to prove? Not everyone was like that so I stayed away from the negative ones and embraced the positive friends. I am much closer to my goal and I'm sure that cutting them out was one of the attributing factors.

Monday, November 26, 2007, 9:32 AM

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If you see a movie as a place where "snacks are inevitable," then you are probably not ready to go to a movie while on your weight loss journey. Eventually, you may get there. Or you may have to adjust slowly, by going with someone who doesn't snack at the movies. You need to put yourself ahead of the activities available until you get to a point where you can do both at once.

I used to always snack at the movies. Then I started going with my husband, who never snacks at the movies (he's naturally skinny and just doesn't really think about food much.) Now when we go, we only get popcorn if it is going to be our meal, and not our snack or dessert. We may get a large, but we share it. And we don't get refills. And if we've just had dinner, then we don't get anything, or maybe just some water.

Just make "rules" for yourself. Or, tell your friends that you'll meet them for dinner but can't make the movie, or vice versa.

In the end, only you can tell what you are and aren't ready for. If you're ready to sit in a movie theatre and not eat, while your friends are munching away, then go. If not, then don't go.

Monday, November 26, 2007, 12:06 PM

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my guess is your friend thought you were being really judgmental and thats why she ended up doing nothing with you. It's her right to not do anything about her weight. If she's happy with her weight, then you trying to change her may bother her.

I mean, skinny people go to movies too. You could have suggested a movie and coffee (you could have had herbal tea) instead, but suggesting something like a walk or a hike, if she's never been into that kinda thing might have been rude. It would be like my best friend inviting me to go to a country music festival- I don't like country, she knows it, and I'd be insulted.

Monday, November 26, 2007, 12:29 PM

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I don't really have a problem dealing with food around chubby friends - watching them eat is a stark reminder of what will happen to my body if I eat the way I used to. My biggest issue with that scenario is that they're always paying lip service to dieting, and that just annoys the hell out of me. I do avoid eating out with my guy friends because they have all said to me "I'll only meet you for lunch if you order real food and not diet crap". I guess it's hard to watch someone eat smart when they know they should be doing the same.

As for inevitable movie snacking - good grief, do you really like paying $4 for a box of Milk Duds or a bucket of popcorn?? I haven't caved on that one in years, diet or no diet. I'm not broke, but c'mon, popcorn + drink = more than the price of the movie ticket!

Monday, November 26, 2007, 12:31 PM

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I used to bond with many friends using food and alcohol. It is very hard at first because I believe they think I was judging them. I wasn't. I don't care what everyone does and doesn't eat. I think it's their own insecurity about the crap they know they're eating.

Monday, November 26, 2007, 12:37 PM

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this is part of our journey

there will always be "comments" from people our how we have changed to healthy a lifetsyle... old freinds that are food buddies, jealous freinds, family who think what you are doing is not right for you... etc. we have to be really strong with out convictions. we are doing what we have to do for US/// we can't let others reactions derail us in anyway.... I am trying to learn how to deal with these comments and have comebacks for the foodpushers as well! good luck and be strong.. we can do what we know is right for us!!!


Monday, November 26, 2007, 1:19 PM

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I think you need to decided friend by friend. How close are you? Are you willing to lose the friend? It is up to you how much you are willing to do to keep the friendship. But I also think it is very important to be around people that will lift you up and encourage you. We can get down on ourselves so easily.
Most places you go to eat have something you can choose on the menu.
Also if you don't want to eat anything at the movies think about taking chewing gum.
It is a matter of making different choices and being ok with it.
I am sure these are difficult decisions and will take a lot of thought. I hope that your friends can be supportive of you. Any support we get just makes it that much easier to follow the plan.

Monday, November 26, 2007, 11:22 PM

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Disposable Friends?

Losing weight is like a conversion experience. Sometimes we want to convert everyone around us and can't understand why they don't believe like us. But the truth is that you've decided to loose weight, she hasn't. When I was out of shape, going for a hike/walk with other people was EMBARRASSING, not fun. All that huffing and puffing and sweating just to walk around the block. Think about how she felt. Just like any new convert, eventually you'll be stronger with your new way of living and will start to miss your old friends. But then, it might be too late. Is your friend that disposable? Maybe she is. Sometimes you DO have to cut unsupportive people loose. But if she isn't disposable, why not try talking with her, explaining that you're in a vulnerable moment right now and can the two of you problem solve together about things you might both enjoy, not just a tug of war between pigging-out and hiking. Fat, out of shape people who aren't ready to loose weight can still be reasonable. Remember? That was once you.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007, 10:14 AM

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Just try and have some sensitivity to your friends' feelings. If your friend suggests dinner and a movie, instead of saying "let's go hiking instead," try either saying yes or no to dinner and a movie (or to a part - "okay, let's see the movie, but I can't make dinner," etc.), and then, at a totally separate time, invite her to do something that you'd rather do, like hiking, shopping, whatever it may be.

That way, you aren't telling her that her activity is worse than yours. And you're inviting her to do things with you. She may say yes or no to your idea, but at least you aren't making it "my idea or your idea" - you can do both. Or at least let them stand as individual activities. Not one instead of the other. Just separate.

I'm not sure if I'm being clear... Hopefully that wasn't too confusing; sorry if it was!

In the end, you get the same thing. But your friend doesn't feel bad that you don't like her idea.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007, 10:34 AM

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