If men are from Mars and women are from Venus, it’s logical to think the two genders just might be influenced differently when it comes to exercise motivation. Since we’re still in Men’s Health Month at Fit After Fifty, let’s focus on the fellas for now.
So let’s consider a common doctor-patient scene between John Doe and Dr. Smith.
Dr. Smith: “John….I can show you all the numbers from your blood work, but the bottom line is that you need to lose weight! When you lose the 40 – 50 pounds of excess weight, you’ll be healthier and the numbers will reflect that. Bottom line: in addition to good nutrition, you need to get out and start moving. Sweat more!”
John Doe: “I hear ya loud and clear, Doc.”
MOTIVATION: weight loss and better health
Believe it or not, for men, framing exercise as a direct means for losing weight can be highly motivating, according to renowned behavior-change researcher and expert, Dr. Michelle Segar. In one of her recent studies, funded by the National Institute of Health, overweight and obese men and women age 40 – 60 were observed and surveyed. It was essentially a study about marketing exercise. Messages relating exercise to well-being and quality of life were less motivating for the men than the women. However, the men did respond favorably to exercise when it was tied to a means for weight loss and better health in general.
Maybe it’s because the men really just want to impress the ladies!