Scales and the Boyfriend Effect

Is it just me or do we all gain weight when we stop living alone? If I step on the scales after a long time (yes it had been months but that’s what you do when you’re in denial) I often get a big fat wake up call. This month I found I’d gained back each pound I lost while traveling on my own for six weeks and added a few more for good measure. I call it the boyfriend effect.

I don’t understand it. I’ve been good! I’ve been walking 4-6 times a week, eating mindfully and watching those white carbs. I wasn’t always skinny, but I never really had to work too hard to keep my weight consistent or to lose a few pounds, but those days are apparently history. Boo hiss.

Panic mode. Long bike ride this morning. Strict portion control and no extra goodies. I even Googled Almased diet drink shake mix, but after reading all the reviews and reflecting on the downside to soy protein, I didn’t pull the trigger on an Amazon order. Shakes don’t do much for me. I never feel like I’ve had enough to satisfy my hunger and quite frankly I feel more bloated than svelte after imbibing, which is NOT the effect I’m going for.

the boyfriend effect
I Blame It On the Boyfriend Effect.

When you’re cooking for two, somehow the portion control gets a little off kilter. I shop more, I eat more and I drink a little more wine. Oh I tried to trick myself by buying smaller blates (a flat bowl) but that doesn’t seem to be working. I know I make more food for two than when I’m cooking for myself. Not only do I make more, but I’m also aware I’m trying to satisfy a male appetite by using more robust ingredients whereas I can be quite happy with something simple.

In the past when I wanted to drop a few pounds, I’d just cut out carbs and white stuff like rice, flour, bread and pasta. Even now, I rarely eat anything made with flour and almost never have pasta. I do like brown rice occasionally – it’s fiber and fiber is good. Now however those easy adjustments don’t seem to be having the same result. Apparently my metabolism has shifted, which means I’m going to have to try harder to shift these pounds that have materialized out of nowhere! 😉

I’m determined to lose at least five pounds. I’ll eat less and exercise more. Eat less unhealthy carbs, keep eating lots of veg and fruit (berries), drink more water and drink less wine. Keep walking, ride my bike when possible and keep moving.

When I’m happy I tend to eat a bit more (we’re celebrating!) and when I’m unhappy I lose my appetite. I’m not one to cuddle up with a bag of chips or bucket of ice cream when sad, in fact just the opposite. But apparently I must not be unhappy.

I’m blaming it all on my boyfriend. And the scales. Stay tuned for updates. Let me know what works for you!

the boyfriend effect

Photo by Abigail Keenan on Unsplash

PS – I believe we all have a weight set point. A weight that feels right and good to us. You may think 5 pounds is nothing, but on my body and for my set point it matters. But choose what is true for you – what makes you feel relaxed and comfortable. x


After a long career in advertising and technology, I started an interior design business at the height of the crash. I’m passionate about being creative and helping others reinvent their life. I restarted mine at 50+ and have never been happier. How can I help you?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *