Most people would probably agree that a lack a motivation is a major reason they put off a workout. The task of rolling out of bed in the morning to hit the gym before work seems impossible. Working out with a partner, trainer, or a small group might be the solution for this problem. Here are several reasons you should consider getting more social when it comes to your workouts:
Partner workouts increase motivation
Social comparison theory basically states that people compare themselves to other people to gauge how they are doing status wise. Fitness studies involving this theory have shown that the likelihood of joining and staying motivated during exercise increases when friends or peers engage in those same
activities (Plante et al. 50). How many times have you found yourself pushing just a little bit harder during a workout because of someone next to you doing the same?
It will hold you accountable
Most people have a trainer for this very reason. If there are consequences for not making a workout, such as letting your partner, trainer, or group down, it will make you less likely to skip. When choosing a workout partner, make sure it is someone you have an emotional connection with and don’t want to let down. “Psychologically, if you feel like you have a responsibility and commitment toward another person, you are more likely to follow through on that commitment” (Wagner).
You can have a long distance workout partner
Having a fitness buddy that is able to accompany you to workouts is ideal, but it’s okay if you don’t. Even if someone can’t workout with you because of different schedules or distance, you can still hold each other accountable. If you are having troubles finding a partner or group, using an app is an option. Make Me is one example of an app that will allow you to participate in group challenges with friends, family, or people from around the world.
It can make you AND your relationship stronger
Partner workouts can be done with a significant other to improve relationships. “Lab studies show that after jointly participating in an exciting physical challenge or activity, couples report feeling more satisfied with their relationships and more in love with their partner” (qtd. in Didanto). So next time you and your lover are in a quarrel, try bringing them to the gym with you; It may end up being just the thing you need 🙂
Don’t have a partner? Use a mirror!
There is another reason those mirrors are there besides watching your form and to make sure your gym selfie is on point! Exercising in front of a mirror or with a partner can improve your mood and energy. “For example, women who exercised with a partner or in front of a mirror experienced an increased level of exhaustion and decreases in feelings of revitalization while exercising compared to women who exercised either alone or without mirrors” (Plante et al. 50).
The only way you are going to reach your fitness goals is to train consistently! If you find it hard to hold yourself accountable, working out with a trainer, friend, or significant other may be the way. We all owe it to ourselves to be healthy and to feel good, so don’t let a lack of motivation keep you from reaching your goals!
DiDonato, Theresa. “5 Reasons Why Couples Who Sweat Together, Stay Together.” Psychology Today. Sussex Publishers, 10 Jan. 2014. Web. 17 May 2017.
Plante, Thomas G., Meghan Madden, Sonia Mann, Grace Lee, Allison Hardesty, Nick Gable, Allison Terry, and Greg Kaplow. “Effects of Perceived Fitness Level of Exercise Partner on Intensity of Exertion.” Journal of Social Sciences 6.1 (2010): 50-54. Web. 15 May 2017.
Wagner, Gina DeMillo. “Strength in Numbers: The Importance of Fitness Buddies.” Experience Life. N.p., July & aug. 2012. Web. 17 May 2017.