An accountability partner can enhance your fitness journey. Valentine’s Day may be over, but I still have to highlight the importance of a solid partnership … in fitness. I know that as a working professional, you have limited time to squeeze fitness activities into your busy daily routine. So, why would you want the trouble of syncing your hectic schedule with someone else’s? Good question.
Countless studies show that having a fitness partner keeps you accountable to your fitness routine and will increase your results. And let’s be honest, those glimmering results you see in the mirror tend to make all the strain, sweat, and sacrifice worth it, right? Here are a few more:
Improved Efficiency: Social psychology tells us that the simple presence of someone else positively affects your ability to do an activity. A good workout partner will also motivate you to power through those last few repetitions of the chest press, or holler next to you during a lively punch-kick combo in cardio kickboxing class; that extra burst right when you need it can make all the difference in the quality of your workout.
Fun and Exploration: You can get a serious workout without actually being serious. The more fun you add to your workout routine, the more you’ll look forward to your workouts and commit to them over the long haul. Having a partner by your side makes it easier to step out of your comfort zone to try a new weight-lifting routine, group exercise class, or running route. Add a pinch of laughter, encouragement, and motivation from your accountability partner, and you’re practically sealing the deal to your fitness success. Also, since your partner has different skills and knowledge than you do, you both can benefit from this by sharing different exercises and workout tips with each other. Variety is a key component of long-term sustainability, so you’re much more likely to stick to your workouts when you can do new things.
Friendly Competition: Having a fitness partner can also be a platform for a little healthy competition. For example, each week you can set challenging but achievable short-term goals for the type, number, and length of the workouts you’ll do that week. Both of you work towards your goals, and if one falls short of the goal, they owe the other a cup of coffee or a thousand dollars (depending on your budgets). While you keep each other accountable with short-term goals, you can also celebrate with each other after achieving long-term goals, such as staying on track for a month, quarter, or hitting certain weight loss or physical fitness targets.
Having an accountability partner by your side — whether it is a significant other, friend, neighbor, or regular gym acquaintance — clearly comes with benefits other than an improved physique. Don’t go it alone on your fitness journey when having a partner by your side adds some welcome motivation and fun. And that’s what life’s about! If you already have a partner, you’re one step ahead of the game. If not, let’s make February the month to find a willing and reliable companion to share your fitness frustrations and glistening achievements.