Why don't men go to weight loss groups?
Experiences from my time supporting a weight loss group
Hello fellow Protagonists,
In the not so distant past a member of my family used to be a rep for a very popular weight loss group here in the UK. I used to attend to help them each week by processing new members, checking existing members in and also taking any payments for memberships, merch and snacks.
Overall I did enjoy this experience and loved meeting new people as well as seeing some familiar faces each week. I did have my questions and doubts about the company itself, both on its principles towards their employees and also the impact of their plan in the long term with their customers. All this aside it was at least a positive social event.
After a few months of supporting this group it really started to dawn on me.
Where are all the men?
Sure, we would get a small handful of men in the group. I would say that out of the roughly 25 people that would attend on average each session, around 2 of them would probably be men.
If a man did turn up they would usually be accompanied by either a partner or another family member. Were they being roped into this or were they happy to come on their own accord?
There was one man who stood out in particular. He was a regular and was an interesting, chirpy and social person who was great to chat with. He also managed to shift a serious amount of weight and used to come on his own. So groups can potentially support men to achieve weight loss.
We also know that obesity is a concern for men just as it is for women in the UK. In 2018 the NHS survey identified that 56% of all people were at a raised risk of a chronic disease due to their size, and 26% of men were considered obese. I am not sure that this is a trend that is declining either.
So why are men not attending these weight loss groups?
I don't think men are naive to their weight. Most of the men I know that have been asked the question around their weight can give at least a rough answer. Whether or not that answer is the truth is a completely different matter.
I for one, am more than happy to tell you my weight even though I am not the lightest chicken in the coop, like I did here.
It is easier for men to openly disclose their weight, is there less stigma attached to a heavier man because we are generally heavier anyway and sometimes heavier can also mean stronger? If this was the case then surely that would mean men would be happy to attend weight loss groups.
Or don't we want to lose the weight? I don't think that is the case as I hear plenty of men, including myself, discuss how they either want to or have wanted to do so.
Is it then that these groups are clearly tailored towards women and are using strategies, metrics and styles that men just do not relate to?
Do men find the awards and certificates patronising? I am going to give you a snippet of my life here and tell you that this is not true as I have been involved in calming arguments between murderers and other previously violent men because one had been offered a participation star or award and another had not and felt they deserved one.
Do not underestimate the power of an award, however minor it may seem.
Maybe if someone turned up to a weight loss group for the first time and realised they were the only male present, would this change the likelihood of returning? If this was the case it sounds like a never ending cycle as you need males present in order for any men to stay in the first place.
What if we just don't like being told what to do? If this was the case then nobody would be in the armed forces.
So many potential reasons.
More of a thought explosion in this post than previous but I am interested to hear from you if you:
Are male and attend/ever attended a weight loss group
Are female and attend/ever attended a weight loss group that has a mixed bunch, or no men at all
Are part of a male weight loss group
Think you have the answers to this question
How about The Daily Buff weight loss group!
Comment below or get in touch with me at Thedailybuff@gmail.com
GLHF (Good Luck Have Fun)
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