Working out together can be an excellent way to strengthen your relationship, both literally and figuratively. Try these tips for getting in shape together:
- Choose a couple’s class. Sign up for one that interests you both: martial arts, salsa dancing, yoga, 5K training or other sports. Learning something new together is a wonderful relationship building activity!
- Consider changes. As you know, being in a healthy relationship requires some give-and-take. Finding a fitness program that both of you can share demands the same thing. Women often prefer cardio workouts, while men tend to favor strength-training ones. When choosing your new activity, try incorporating a little bit of both. If you have trouble agreeing, compromise. Do your walking routine on one day, and your partner’s upper body strength routine the next.
- Stay side-by-side. If cardio is something both of you enjoy, simply pick two cardio machines next to each other and work towards your individual goals. Or try a spinning (indoor cycling) class that allows each participant to cater the workout to their fitness level – easy, challenging or somewhere in the middle.
- Include intervals. If you are a slow jogger and your significant other is faster, intervals will be perfect for both of you. Work at one partner’s faster pace for a few minutes, and then recover at the other person’s slower pace. Intervals are also a great way to improve your fitness level and speed over time. Before you know it, you’ll both be able to work at the same pace together.
- Watch the weights. If you want to strength train together, switch places with one another between sets. About 90 seconds of rest between sets is beneficial anyway. So while you rest, your partner can complete one set of the exercise. Switching the weights to your own level is quick and easy to do on most machines.
- Show support. People are more apt to keep up an exercise routine if it’s fun. “Fun” doesn’t include being snapped at for being unable to lift as much weight or when you can’t run as fast as your partner. Be kind and encouraging.
Talk to your doctor before starting any exercise program.