America's Fittest Couple believes that a romantic relationship is the gateway to a healthy, productive, satisfying, and enjoyable life. And they're hopeful that this perspective will catch on with others too.
The reality is that many young people -- college students and young professionals alike - purposefully avoid a relationship (men especially). Perhaps they intend to "play the field" or "focus on their career" -- or simply conclude that life as a young person just "isn't the time for monogamy." Whatever the case, the reasoning isn't sound - and not only that, it's self-destructive. Let's explore why.
1.) Single life will plunge you into the nightlife.
When Friday night rolls around and you don't have a partner to head to the cinema with, you'll likely be meeting your friends out for drinks -- maybe hoping that Prince Charming or that perfect girl will magically appear at the venue of your choosing. The truth is that he or she won't be, and you'll end up wasting precious time and energy that should have been allocated to restoring your health -- catching up on sleep, working out, stretching, cooking a healthy meal, getting a massage, reading a book, meditating, practicing yoga, or fostering lasting personal connections with worthwhile people (not the drunken fool you met in the Meat Packing District at 2 a.m.). The nightlife is a black hole that will drain your health -- everything from the alcohol to the staying up late, the loud music to the mindless standing. And "going out" is a lifestyle, so the people you met this Saturday will be there the next, and they'll expect you to be there too -- leading to a cycle that will get you unnaturally mobilized at 11 p.m. because of you not wanting to disappoint someone or the fear of missing out.
2.) You will eat out too often.
If you're single, you're going to be eating out (or ordering in, which is the same thing) and there's no getting around it. Picture the iconic image of the 20-something bachelor sitting in his pad surrounded by empty beer bottles and pizza boxes. Or that classic scene of the single girl commiserating with a pint of Ben and Jerry's on Saturday night while watching The Notebook for the 30th time. There's a clear trend here: single people don't cook.
Suppose you're not at home and you're actively trying to meet somebody -- then you will be going on dates. Dates typically (and hopefully) will involve you going out to dinner, an activity that will in no way facilitate your long-term health. Lock down a partner of your choosing and focus on pursuing healthy activities together that will enhance both of your lives.
3.) You will drink too much (or work too much).
Single life almost automatically involves a cocktail in hand -- a lifestyle that does little for your health, fitness, and wellbeing. Better to wake up early on Saturday morning and get in a good workout than be spending your precious weekend hours intoxicated at some after party, or severely hung over and binging on potato chips. You'll probably meet somebody more suitable (and much sooner) at your gym than at the club.
If you're single and you don't drink, you'll likely be over-investing in your job. With the absence of a home life, you'll become convinced that your job is your purpose, and go above and beyond what's expected of you -- even though this won't drastically improve your salary or chances for promotion. No happy person spends nights at the office when he or she can get home early, cook a healthy dinner with his or her partner, and partake in an evening of love-making. Which leads us to our next point...
4.) You will miss out on the healthiest activity of all: sex.
Not only does sex burn calories and help you sleep better, but it will help lower your blood pressure and stress levels as well. It protects against cancer, strengthens the heart, boosts immunity, and the list goes on. But, just like you can't eat a plate of healthy food once every two weeks and say you're on a healthy diet, the health benefits from sex only come through a healthy sex life. The key word there is "life," because your existence should be one that involves sex regularly, which can only come from a steady partner.
Getting into a relationship isn't just good for your fitness, it's good for your health, too. Fitness, health, and happiness all go hand in hand, so let's start coupling up and reaping the benefits that a great relationship offers.
This article was written together with Jon Pearlman, co-founder of AmericasFittestCouple.com.