Eat better. Lose weight. Find love. These are all common resolutions at the start of any new year. We polled over 5,000 singles to find out just how important diet and fitness are in their dating search, and what we learned is that most people simply want someone whose lifestyle matches their own.
A new year, a new you. Maybe you're cutting out sugar or meat from your diet, or maybe you're concentrating on portion control. You probably have many reasons for wanting to adjust your diet, but for many of us it's about weight loss and looking and feeling more attractive.
Our survey revealed that many of you, whether you recognize it or not, factor diet and eating habits into the dating process. Maybe it's just your nerves, but 41 percent of women and 37 percent of men admitted to eating less than they normally would on a first date.
What was really interesting was how men and women reacted differently to a date who didn't eat much. Thirty-two percent of the men said they think a woman is trying to impress him when she picks at her meal on a date. Nineteen percent said they were glad she is watching her waistline.
Meanwhile, women found men who didn't eat on dates to be a turnoff - 24 percent of them thought the man was just trying to save money by eating less and nearly 30 percent thought it revealed he didn't like eating out.
Scared to order the ribeye because she just revealed she's a vegetarian and ordered a salad? Only 20 percent of our respondents said it was important to them that their partner share their same eating habits, so go ahead and order something you'll enjoy.
The other piece of looking and feeling attractive, of course, is related to your level of physical fitness. Confidence is attractive, and for many of us our confidence is tied to what we see in the mirror. That's probably why so many - 73 percent of the women in our survey and 66 percent of the men - said they get themselves in shape before they start dating.
Physical fitness also happens to be something many of us find important when looking for a potential partner. Forty-eight percent of men and forty percent of women surveyed said it is "extremely important" to them that the person they're dating be in good shape, and just four percent of both men and women said it wasn't important at all.
So how in shape do you need to be? The survey revealed that most people simply want someone whose physical fitness matches their own.
We all know physical attraction is important, but beyond that most of us want to be with someone who can join us in our favorite activities. When physical fitness levels differ drastically, the odds that you can enjoy the same activities together - whether that's running or rock climbing or skiing - are greatly reduced.
And it turns out that being in a relationship with someone might actually improve your fitness level. A third of both men and women in the survey said working out becomes more of a priority once they're in a romantic relationship, and nearly fifty percent said they are "extremely likely" to encourage their partner to be more active.
As you think about your diet and exercise resolutions for the new year, remember to make your goals about you. It's feeling great about yourself that will attract the type of person you want to be dating.
Is your New Year's resolution meeting someone new? Let the matchmakers at It's Just Lunch help you find your match! Get started today by calling us at 1-800-489-7897 or click here to tell us a little about yourself.