The couple who lifts together stays together." If this isn't a thing, can we make it a thing? What if we told you there is evidence that sharing a workout with your significant other can strengthen your relationship, especially when you're doing the same activity at the same time? Research also shows that people enjoy physical activity more when they do it with someone. Still not convinced? How about living with or regularly seeing your accountability partner, making it even more difficult to flake on your gym date?
Regardless of whether you walk the same speed, lift the same amount of weight or enjoy the same activities, there are still numerous workouts you can try together. Not only will you get all the benefits of a great workout, but you might even find yourself even closer after a few good sweat sessions together. It's time to turn your life partner into your favorite workout partner!
Running or Walking
Not only is this accessible to most everyone, but it's also an opportunity to have one-on-one time to talk if you don't have the luxury of much free time at home. If you don't run or walk at the same pace, intervals are a great option. Try two minutes at the faster person's pace, followed by a slower, three-minute recovery interval. As your fitness level improves, you can lengthen the hard interval and decrease the recovery period together.
Group Exercise Classes
Classes allow each person to work at their own level while catering to a wide variety of interests. If you're in the mood for a challenging workout and your partner would prefer to take it easy, seek out a class with a nice balance that will allow for higher intensities for the former and modifications for the latter.
Hiking, canoeing, bike riding, paddle boarding—there are endless options for an outdoor workout that also provide the health benefits of being in nature. Use the quiet time together to reconnect and get some fresh air.
Sixty seconds of rest between sets is the perfect opportunity for your partner to "work in" and do a set of the same exercise. Different strength levels? No problem. Each person can use their own dumbbells or, if using machines, simply move the toggle for a quick weight adjustment.
Looking for a way to mix things up and add fun to your routine? Circuit training might be the solution. Pick a free area in your house, yard or at the local park and set up eight to 10 strength stations. These can include bodyweight exercises, exercises using minimal equipment such as a resistance band, or sprints or jumps. Move through each one with no rest in between to keep your heart rate elevated. Allow each partner to pick half of the exercises to be sure it's a workout you will both enjoy.
Boxing is perfect for couples because so much of this activity requires a partner. Hold pads for each other while doing punch combinations or try light sparring (with proper safety equipment, of course). If there isn't a class available in your area, check out some beginner workouts on YouTube.
Yoga and Stretching
Improve flexibility and promote relaxation at the same time with a regular stretch session. Often, you can move deeper into the stretch when the partner provides gentle resistance. The same goes for yoga, where partner poses can easily be integrated into a calming and mindful routine. Just be mindful of listening to the other person's body and verbal cues to avoid injury.
Working out with your partner is a chance to spend time developing a common interest while creating an atmosphere of motivation and support. It's a winning combination of simultaneously strengthening your relationship while strengthening your bodies.