Overweight Consumers Often in Denial, But Seeking to be More Active

More than one-​third of American adults today are obese according to The Centers For Disease Control and Prevention, but a new survey from Anytime Fitness finds that most people don't think they are part of the problem—and those who do want to get healthier may be setting themselves up for failure from the start. Weight

The fitness club chain's annual 'Weight of the Union' survey found that although almost nine out of ten adults surveyed (84% percent) believe Americans generally weigh more now than they did five years ago, 56% of overweight respondents and 30% of obese respondents felt they were at normal weights compared to the general American public.

However, staying closer to home led to a more accurate assessment of BMI. When asked to compare themselves to family and friends, the number of overweight people who felt they were at a normal weight dropped to 45%. The number of obese respondents who felt they were at a normal weight dropped even more drastically, to just 14%.

Further, almost three in four adults (71%) overestimate the weekly recommended amount of physical activity—which could be demotivating or lead to quicker burnout. According to the CDC, adults need at least 2 hours and 30 minutes of moderate physical activity each week; 71% of respondents thought it was more and 27% thought it was double the actual amount (5 hours).

Additional noteworthy findings from the survey include:

  • The dangers of sitting are still a mystery to many – 68% of adults falsely believe active people can sit for longer periods of time without increasing their risk of obesity.
  • Eight out of ten (82%) adults underestimate the amount of time spent on moderate exercise before consuming a sports drink is healthy.
  • Almost three out of four adults (73%) want to increase their current activity level.

To learn more about weight-​loss seekers, check out the AudienceSCAN report available on the Research Store at ad​-ology​.com.

[Source:  "2014 Weight of the Union survey."  Anytime Fitness.  30 Jan. 2014.  Web.  30 Jan. 2014.]