Working out with others is a known motivator, getting you to the gym as you don’t want to let them down, making you push yourself harder as your sneaky competitive side comes out. In fact, studies have found that working out with a buddy can improve your performance by 50%.
But what if your friend’s not available? Would you consider working out with your other half?
Just bear with us for a second would you? We know you wake up with them, and go to bed with them, and spend many of your waking hours with them, but working out together can have its benefits. A recent study found that working out with your partner could help you stick with it — only 8% of participants who exercised with their spouses or partner quit compared to half of participants who exercised solo.
That’s a good enough reason to give it a go right? We thought so. Take heed of these seven tips though, we don’t want a homicide on our hands.
1. Don’t be a show-off
One stumbling block may be that one of you is fitter than the other. While this isn’t ideal, it can work just fine if the fitter of the two follows one simple rule – don’t show off!
If you spot your other half struggling to master downward dog or falling off the treadmill, don’t be mean and take the piss (as tempting as it may be) – use your superior knowledge and fitness to aid them in their pursuit to catch up with you, and snigger when they’re not looking.
2. Be ready to try new things
Successful relationships are all about compromise, and that goes double for working out together. So, if that means having to try out the latest in aqua aerobics classes when you really don’t fancy it, or giving CrossFit a go when you’d rather be in the sauna, chalk up those hands and get involved. You never know, you may be performing muscle-ups after a few weeks.
3. Get a good plan going
Both rocked up with different ideas for what you’re going to be doing in your workout? Instant argument in the middle of the gym. Not cool.
If one of you wants to get on the cardio training and the other fancies spanking the weights it’s not going to end well. Plan your workout sessions before you go, that way there’s no unwanted surprises and no arguments over whether it’ll be yoga or a spin class.
4. Be immune to embarrassment
Okay, so you slipped on the running machine, had to pull the emergency cord, and your partner burst out laughing. Stop yourself right there – don’t storm out in embarrassment. This is the person that’s seen you naked, rubbed your back while you were being sick from one-too-many and heard all those noises from the other side of the bathroom door. So laugh it off and get on with it.
5. Don’t bother trying to keep up
Let’s face it, we all have different bodies, it’s just how it is. So don’t be surprised if one of you can do more pull-ups or the other’s more flexible. Don’t go getting all competitive and trying to force yourself into yogic pretzels, that’s how accidents happen. Accept your inferiority and work at your own pace.
6. You’re not a personal trainer – so stop acting like one
By all means be supportive of your partner if you see them lagging or slacking off a bit, but don’t go into full-on ‘personal trainer’ mode, it’s not big and it’s not clever. Shouting at your partner to complete one more rep or constantly adjusting their form will 100% result in a swift “f**k you”, so leave that at the door.
7. Don’t start getting it on in the weight room
No one wants to see a sweaty couple getting a bit too tactile on the weight bench next to them. NO ONE! Yes watching your partner performing squats might do it for you, but for gawd’s sake wait till you get home to get the extra-curricular exercise in. Bleee.