<![CDATA[Recent studies have shown that spouses who exercise more can lead to less intimacy and ultimately counseling/divorce. According to Karen Gale Lewis, a Cincinnati, OH, marriage and family therapist, “exercise is getting more and more couples into my office.” This phenomenon typically involves one spouse becoming heavily involved in an extensive training regimen particularly focusing on marathons or triathlons. Spouses who become involved in endurance training sacrifice intimacy and time with their non-training spouse. A typical endurance training schedule involves upwards of 2 hours per day and 4 to 6 hours on the weekend of intense training. While there is no specific study that correlates the effect of endurance sports and training on the divorce rate two likely consequences result:
- The commitment weakens as appearance increases that is, a client who now is physically fit may realize that he or she was unattractive before and now has more choices perhaps seeking to find a new relationship.
- The other spouse may see this as an opportunity to embrace exercise, not necessarily at the extreme level but at least at a level wherein both spouses may participate in some level of exercise to continue and/or enhance their relationship. The latter may involve participation in training, support through dietary and other non-physical training, as well as support at races.