Having a workout buddy can do wonders to improve motivation and accountability. No doubt about that. There’s nothing like knowing that somebody is waiting for you at the gym to ‘encourage’ you to get off the couch and into your exercise clothes.
Other benefits of partner fitness training?
- it’s an efficient way to combine workout time with social time
- you’ll never have to search the gym for a spotter
- having a common goal can strengthen personal relationships
- hiring a personal trainer is often less expensive when there are two of you
But not all fitness partnerships work out.
When fitness partnerships dissolve, it’s typically due to differences between partners in commitment, ability and temperament.
Want to increase the odds of having a successful partner fitness training experience? Follow these 5 tips!
- ensure that both partners are equally committed. It sounds simple, but all too often, workout buddies differ in their inherent level of commitment. It’s no fun being stood up at the gym (or anywhere else, for that matter). If your partner is late for your workouts, is negative about exercising, or frequently cancels at the last minute, it might be time to re-evaluate the relationship.
- common fitness goals work best. If your primary fitness goal is weight loss and your fitness partner is hoping to shave minutes off their marathon time, the workouts that each of you need to do to achieve your respective goals are strikingly different.
- aim for similar fitness levels and abilities. When partners have very different fitness levels, the fitter individual almost always feels under-challenged, and sometimes, becomes resentful of being held back. These dynamics can spill over into your outside-the-gym relationship.
- save the coffee chatter until after the workout. While the social aspect of having a workout buddy can make exercise more enjoyable, don’t undermine the effects of your workout by talking the entire time. Warmup and stretching times are great for chit-chat; the rest of the time you should be working
- take turns being the trainer. If you and your fitness parter are equally committed to training, share a common fitness goal and have similar fitness levels and abilities, chances are you’re also equally knowledgable (or equally not-so-knowledgable) about exercise. Take turns mapping out your workout sessions, ensuring that you both remain equally engaged in the training relationship (and avoiding the teacher-student mentality)
P.S. Need to find a fitness friend? Group fitness classes are a great way to meet like-minded people; you may just find a fitness partner there!
Do you have a workout buddy?
How has partner fitness training benefited you?