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The Buddy System for Better Health

Healthy Lifestyle

Shaping your success

Did you know your health habits are greatly affected by your choice of friends?

It’s suggested that the five people closest to you shape your success. 

So if you find someone with qualities you admire and would like to have, hang out with them. Keep them close. It will have a positive impact on you.

You’ll develop healthier habits if you spend time with others who have them.

Success comes from support

Research studies show if you have friends or family members who are supportive of your health and fitness goals, you will have a better chance for weight loss success in the long term. 

One study compared a weight loss program that participants attended alone with another program where participants attended with family or friends. The study found at a six-month follow-up that those who attended with family or friends were more likely to maintain their weight after the program ended. 

Those results are on par with another study. It showed that two-thirds of participants who enrolled in a weight loss program with friends had a better rate of keeping their weight off for six months compared to those who enrolled on their own. 

Help in the journey

A weight loss support system can offer you a shoulder to lean on when you are discouraged, help by watching your kids while you exercise, or encourage you to get your exercise in when you really don’t want to. It can be someone you can learn new workouts or recipes from, and someone you can also help along the journey.

Building your team

Find a partner

Do you have a co-worker or friend to workout with or plan healthy meals with? Do you have a neighbor who would enjoy walking with you after work? Find someone else with the same goals to lose weight or be healthy.

Recognize how it feels to give

Take the focus off yourself and help those in your support network, too. Forget about yourself long enough to encourage someone else. The motivation to stick with your own goals will grow. Express your appreciation for the support you are given by helping someone else.

Find your tribe

Join a group focused on weight loss or a program like Weight Watchers. Find a running or biking club if that’s what you enjoy. It can be in person or on social media. Even long-distance support can help you be successful. Stay accountable with daily texts, social media post or workout pictures to inspire each other. You don’t have to do it alone!

Find a local gym or a fitness class you love

You will build a support system with others in your classes or those who work out at the same time. A fitness facility is a great place to meet like-minded people who will push you, support you and motivate you to keep coming back.

Do the people around you represent the things you value? Overall health is greatly affected by social support. When you surround yourself with a community of support, you can become the person you were always meant to be.


 

Brenda Herrod

About the Author:

Brenda Herrod is a board-certified women’s health nurse practitioner who is passionate about inspiring and sharing her healthy lifestyle with others.

She is also an AFAA Certified Personal Trainer, C.O.P.E. Certified Health Coach, and Precision Nutrition Health Coach working with employees at Methodist Health System.

See More Articles by Brenda Herrod