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Staying Motivated with a Training Partner

One of the best ways to get and stay motivated to exercise is to find a workout partner. It’s much easier to stay focused on your goals when someone else is depending on you to show up. In fact, studies show that people who work out with a regular training partner are more likely to achieve their goals, especially if that partner is more advanced than you. It seems the desire to ‘catch up’ or prove that we can be as fit and strong as they are, is a powerful motivator.

Here are 5 benefits of having a training partner:

  1. You’re less likely to skip workouts. Knowing that your partner is depending on you to show up keeps us going. It’s human nature. We don’t want to disappoint others, and especially not a friend.
  2. Working out with a friend is more fun. Instead of being a chore, your workout is now a social occasion. Instead of staring blankly at the wall between sets, you can chat with your buddy.
  3. Better form and a lower likelihood of injury. A partner can often spot sloppy technique better than we can, even if we have a mirror. They can see us from the back and the side, not just the front. This means better results and less chance we’ll injure ourselves, as poor technique is the number one cause of injury.
  4. A more intense workout. This one is iffy, but if you have the right partner, you’ll keep each other motivated to train harder. You can even make it a friendly competition. Just make sure your workout partner is as dedicated as you are, or you might end up spending more time chatting than training.
  5. Variety in your workout. It’s good to change your workout routine every 6 to 8 weeks. Having a second person’s input means a greater likelihood of making significant changes that will result in a new, more effective workout.

Should Your Workout Partner be Your Life Partner?

Many couples work out successfully together, but you’ll need to give some thought to whether or not this will work for you and your partner. If your partner is significantly stronger or fitter than you, or vice versa, it may not be a good idea to train together. First, the weaker partner won’t be able to keep up and may become frustrated or even resentful. Meanwhile the stronger partner may be holding back, and not getting the intense workout they need to stay in shape.

Whether you’re just starting out, or you’ve been training for years but are starting to find your motivation flagging, a training partner may be just what you need to get and keep moving toward your goals. Look for someone who has similar goals and ability levels, make a schedule, and commit to being each other’s cheering section.

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Will Dove

Will is a lifelong fitness nut. He started exercising religiously at the age of 16. Now 52, he still works out 5 times per week and maintains a body fat percentage in the single digits. Will is passionate about helping others to achieve their fitness and body image goals, and believes that most people fail to achieve these goals, not through a lack of self-discipline, but through a simple lack of knowledge.