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I’m having a lot of trouble losing weight. That’s not a unique problem, I know, but I think I’ve kind of come by it in a unique way. My major problem is that I don’t have enough time to exercise, but it’s not that I’m busy with important stuff all the time.

 

Here’s what’s going on: I have a ton of hobbies. Really, I mean it–I actually pride myself in my many interests, and I try to keep a really diverse array of hobbies at any given time. I’ve tried it all, from brewing beer at home to singing in a choir. A few of my hobbies–like building models–are lifelong passions. Others come and go. But there are always a lot of them, and that makes it really tough to find time to go for a jog! I’m worried that this problem will only get worse as I get older, graduate, and get a job (I’m already sad about how much time that will take from my hobbies). What can I do?

 

You say you have a “really diverse array of hobbies,” but there does seem to be one type of hobby that is missing from your roster: physical ones.

 

Your problem seems to be caused by the very thing that can solve it. If you truly pride yourself on trying a little bit of everything, then why not try out dancing? That’s the suggestion of a dance instruction center in Oakbrook Terrace, Illinois that we spoke with. Hiking is a hobby, and so is yoga. Even running–which you say your hobbies leave no time for–is, itself, a hobby!

 

In a way, you have a built-in advantage in your lifestyle. The hardest thing about losing weight is making the changes permanent: healthy living needs to be a lifestyle and a habit, not a short-term measure, if your progress is to be permanent. Since you’re already the master of balancing many interests and committing wholeheartedly to new and diverse hobbies, you should be able to develop a great healthy habit by adding a physical activity to your hobby list.

 

Your exercise schedule is certainly a factor in your weight problem. But it’s also true, medical practitioners in Covington, Louisiana told us, that your diet is perhaps the single biggest factor in your weight. You should be getting at least 30 minutes of exercise a day, and no doctor will tell you otherwise. But you should also know that a bad diet can outweigh (literally!) just about any physical activity schedule short of Michael Phelps’.

 

In short, you need a two-part approach to your weight problem. Your hobbies list needs to include some more active options, so try some out–maybe you’ll find that the next lifetime passion you find is a healthy one. You also need to look at your diet, which may be the factor you’re paying too little attention to. Without both problems addressed, your results will be incomplete at best.

 

“I wondered what could interest me, now that I was finished with love. I could take a course in wine-tasting, maybe, or start collecting model airplaines.” — Michael Houellebecq