20 year ago, I made a decision that changed my life path: I made a random stop by the fraternity house where many of my college friends had belonged. I had heard a rumor that some alums were there hanging out for the evening.
Beer Geek was one of those alums.
1 year later, I married him.
19 years of marriage later, I know I made the right decision.
In many ways, keeping a healthy marriage is much like keeping a healthy lifestyle. So, here are 5 tips for maintaining a healthy marriage as well as a healthy lifestyle.
1. Don’t compare. Your marriage, just like your fitness, is yours alone. Don’t compare other couples public behavior to your day to day marriage. Same thing with running – you don’t know where they are coming from or how hard they’ve worked to get there.
2. Make it a priority. Life gets busy. People have jobs, kids, activities… Just like it’s easy to wake up one day and realize you haven’t run in a month, it’s just as easy to wake up one day and realize you no longer know your spouse. Regular date nights, trips together, and even working out together occasionally can help you keep that connection alive. (This would be the only reason I own a bike…)
3. Marry someone you like. That sounds kind of “duh”, but marrying someone you flat out enjoy being with will go a long way during the hard times. Same thing goes with exercise. If you hate running, you aren’t going to do it. Your primary form of fitness should be something that you enjoy.
4. Realize that the bad days are just that – a bad day. If your marriage is strong and you’ve worked hard to stay close to your partner, most bad days (or even phases) can be worked through. And a lot of times they are indicative of nothing important. Workouts are the same way. We’ve all had days where a run seems so hard for the pace we are running. But we don’t stop, we try again and, chances are, the next run is brilliant.
5. Keep trying new things. Learn together. Have adventures together. Just like fitness, sometimes you need to shake things up a bit.
And remember , it’s as much about the journey as the goals. Embrace every moment and enjoy the ride.
Happy 19th Anniversary, my love! I’d do it all over again – even the birdseed down my dress!