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It would be a lie to say working out as a couple comes naturally. Just like being a couple, it takes hard work, communication and repetition. So why should you add more work to your workout? It’s fun, free and will leave you, and your relationship, stronger. If you are new to working out, just joined a new gym together or have committed to make this year YOUR year to reach your goals, here are a few of my tips to make this journey a little easier.
This may be obvious, but there are a few things I must point out in order for your first “gym date” to be worthy of a second.
Picking the workout: Men and women are drawn to different types of workouts. Men aren’t going to jump into sticky socks to LTB at Pure Barre and some women will be terrified of CrossFit. While I have seen the exception to both of these, the good news is that, within the $27 billion fitness industry, there are many happy mediums. If you want to appeal to both of your interests, make a quick list of what sounds fun to the two of you and pick a few workouts that are mutually interesting.
And if he isn’t willing to make a list, here are few coed safe zones:
- Weight Lifting/Weight Class
- Introductory Boot Camp Class
- Outdoor Sports (running, volleyball, canoeing or biking)
Communication is key. Like in anything else you do as a couple, it’s beneficial to speak up if something is bothering you. The couples I’ve surveyed say this is the biggest challenge when it comes to working out together. It can be something as small as spotting your spouse’s incorrect form or as serious as not trying fully. Whatever it is, delivery and timing are key! If you spouse is about to hurt themselves, tell them! That single injury could burn them from workouts forever. If you are afraid you will hurt his feelings by exposing what he doesn’t know, try saying, “You know honey, I’m not sure that’s the best way to do a pull-up. Let’s ask a trainer.” After all, hearing this from a third party may go over better. Finally, if your spouse gets easily frustrated or disengaged, it’s best to talk after you leave the gym.
>> Read more: How To Strengthen Your Relationship With Your Spouse
Dos and Don’ts: By now, I hope you are abreast to the differences and challenges men and women face when blending their workouts. We are simply wired differently. My good friend put it best by saying, “Women learn from disclosure; men from exposure.” So in wrapping up, I wanted to leave you with a few of my dos and don’ts that hopefully prevent any pet peeves from arising the next time you and your sweetie break a sweat together. These were gathered from surveying friends who have figured out how to work it out, and by good ole fashioned people watching!
- Learn from each other
- Involve your kids & pets
- Share your knowledge
- Compliment each other
- Encourage your spouse
- Consider your hygiene (Guys!)
- Have fun!
- Overuse fragrance/cologne
- Compare yourselves to each other
- Gossip (Ladies!)
- Text/take selfies
- Treat your spouse like your bro/bestie
- (Most importantly) Give up!
Like most things you have learned to do as a couple, this will take practice. To be honest, my husband and I still have to work at it to ensure our workouts are fun and beneficial. But in the long run, this time you spend together will not only save you money, but it will give you longer, healthier lives to be spent together.