So you fell for a hottie who was really into skiing, mountain biking, rock climbing, whitewater kayaking—basically any outdoor adventure sport. He was good at them all, which was a huge turn-on. This guy lived by the “work hard, play hard” motto. One of the greatest parts of your relationship was that you both loved outdoor adventures.
Now that you’ve been dating this guy for a few years, something is seriously different. In fall, when the weekend is approaching and you’re ready for an action-packed adventure, he’s ready for some football! If you’re wondering what happened to your adventurous man and notice any of the following signs, be aware that your partner could suffer from Lazy Man Syndrome. It usually appears in early fall and hits its climax right around the holidays. Here are the top nine symptoms:
1. Weeknights, you find him watching SportsCenter and playing “fantasy football,” whatever that is.
2. Weekends, you find him watching game after game—texting his fellow lazy men the whole time—instead of heading to the mountains or rivers.
3. When you ask him to go hiking with you, he says you’re nagging him.
4. If you do manage to go for a “hike,” it starts and ends at the dog park and lasts about 30 minutes.
5. His new favorite joke is saying that the only time he’s going to run is if someone’s chasing him.
6. He gives you a really funny look when you suggest getting up early to go for a dawn-patrol ski.
7. He uses any weather condition as an excuse for sloth. While it used to be exclusively about the snow and ski conditions, his excuse for staying on the couch has expanded to include all weather conditions. (Who knew that it could be too clear to go outside?)
8. He used to obsessively buy new gear; now, he buys new computers, iPhones, iPods and iPads.
9. He says he’d rather just “chill” than ski, mountain bike, climb, etc.
The onset of LMS is likely to occur during football season, after he’s been in a serious relationship for a few years. From fall to winter, it intensifies when he is near a TV, computer, iPhone or anyone willing to talk football. Beer, friends and family who love football do not help.
Perhaps you’ve fallen into these flawed footsteps while trying to revive the lost passions. Rewards, threats or compromises won’t work. He’s obsessed with football. Think of his obsession as a temporarily paralysis: He can’t see or hear you, and he certainly can’t move from the game.
Still, there is hope. Here are some tips for keeping the love alive. Remember to practice these strategies with kindness and love:
1. Take baby steps (translation: Lower your expectations). Start at the dog park and work your way up to Wheeler Peak.
2. Find that old friend of his who hasn’t fallen prey to LMS, and incorporate something your man used to love into your outing. For example, go for a hike along a river so he can get in some beloved fly-fishing.
3. Apply peer pressure (always keep this tool close because it’s tried and true). If you can manage to pry another friend, couple or family member away from the game, organize a day in the mountains together. If they are coming, he’ll be more inclined to go.
4. Look at football season as “my time.” (It’s a nice way of telling yourself that it’s OK to give up for a little while.) This is a great time to get out into the wilderness by yourself or with any friend or non-football fan.
Remember, ladies, after the Super Bowl, this condition could disappear as quickly as it came on. But that doesn’t mean it won’t rear its ugly head again next fall…