Heading down to the gym or exercising by yourself can not only be boring and intimidating, but also demotivating and deflating. If you’re heading into the New Year with fitness at the top of your resolution list, finding yourself a workout partner could be the best way to kickstart your exercise routine. Studies actually suggest that exercising with a buddy can increase the length of your session and the intensity!
What are the benefits of finding a gym buddy?
Makes exercising more fun
Increases motivation levels
Reduces your chance of injury
Having a cheerleader to validate your progress
Have someone to celebrate milestones with
Can improve mental health having someone to talk to
So what should I look for in my new buddy?
Similar goals and fitness levels
When you’re on the hunt for a gym buddy, whether you’re asking friends, family or someone at your local gym, it’s crucial that you have similar fitness goals. If you’re looking to improve your cardio and your buddy is looking to build up some muscle, chances are you’re not a good match! Similarly, it’s also important that your buddy is of a similar fitness level to you. If you’re training with a professional athlete and you’re a complete novice, you may over work yourself and end up with an injury! If they’re a little fitter than you however, or vice versa, this could help give a little push.
Positivity is the most important mindset to have when it comes to exercise. Believing you will reach your goal and pushing through negativity when needed are great traits to look for in a workout partner. A buddy with a shining attitude will drive your motivation and encourage you to keep pushing you towards your goals.
Whether it’s raining, snowing or a bright sunny day, your partner should be prepared to go. Routine is key with exercise, so find someone who is capable of sticking to set days and times. Find someone who has a similar schedule with you and decide whether you’d like to work out during the morning, afternoon or evening. Make sure your partner is in it for the long haul, exercise won’t change you overnight!
A little friendly competition never hurt anyone, right? Getting a buddy who knows how to give you a little push, to do that extra 5 star jumps or run that one extra kilometre. If you’re having a bad day, having someone there to rile you up and get you pumped to exercise will significantly improve your exercise sessions length and intensity!
Before you settle on your gym buddy, try having a few different sessions with a few different people and compare how you felt after each workout: which you felt more motivated for, which workout felt most beneficial and most importantly, who did you have the most fun with. If you’re really struggling to find a gym buddy, try attending some exercise classes, these can be a great way to meet new people and get the motivation you need!