If you’ve followed my blog for a while, you know that my girlfriend, Breeze, has been an integral support for me. She has helped me to achieve my goals and push myself to reach my potential. When I want to give up, she encourages me to keep going. If I say a workout is painful, she says “are you hurt or are you injured?”, which is a phrase that I still run through my head (in her voice!) to push through just one more set, even when it gets hard.
We don’t always work out together, but often we do. It depends on what we’re doing and what our schedules happen to look like at the time. We can both agree that there are pros and cons to working out with your significant other. Personally, I prefer working out with Bree. My motivation is higher, the time goes by faster and we have a lot of fun. Still – and I say this knowing that there is a chance that Bree will read this post – there are some down sides to a workout with your girlfriend, too.
In case you’re considering trying workouts as a couple, here are some of the pros and cons I’ve learned from my own experience.
• Pro: Quality time together – Bree and I are both busy people. That means that we just don’t get to spend as much time together as we’d like. This means that by including each other in our workouts, we get to squeeze just that many more minutes out of our days for each other.
• Con: Schedule conflicts – As I said, we’re busy people. This means that it can be challenging to find the time when our schedules will align and when we’ll both feel like doing a workout. I mean, sure, we may both be free at 11pm on Mondays, but that’s not exactly when we’d like to hit the gym. Overall, we have a set time of day that we’ve designated for “together” workouts. Most days, it’s a time that works for us both. We both aim to take part in it, but if we can’t make it for a that time, we work out on our own time and will try to make it the next time.
• Pro – Motivation – If you want to feel more motivated than with any other workout partner (especially yourself), do your workouts with your girlfriend. If you’re not too busy pushing yourself because you’re showing off, you’re doing it because you get competitive with each other. For fun, of course. As much as it’s motivational and enjoyable to challenge each other, nobody wants to be around someone who gets too competitive and is a sore loser (or winner, for that matter).
• Con – Waiting afterward – It seems inevitable that one person in a couple will be the efficient gym user who gets in there, does the workout, showers, dresses and is ready to go, while the other person arrives, chats with employees and other gym users, does the workout, then turns the shower into a type of spa experience where time no longer exists. Then the efficient gym user ends up waiting for the other person (who will remain nameless, but whose name starts with a B…) for what seems like forever.
• Pro – It can be kind of hot – When you get the chance to watch your partner doing something they’re good at, it’s super attractive. You might think that would be distracting, but it’s not. Instead, it can actually give you a boost in your own self esteem as you know you must be giving your partner the same impression about yourself. If you do happen to notice that your girlfriend is doing an especially good job, toss a genuine compliment her way. It’s good for you both.
• Con – It can smell bad. Really bad – I don’t know if you’ve found some kind of miracle deodorant that can help to get past the B.O. from the whole body sweat, but I haven’t and – Bree, please don’t kill me if you read this – neither has my girlfriend. It may be attractive to watch my girlfriend looking strong, fit and good at what she’s doing, but we sure don’t smell attractive!
• Pro – Working toward goals together – If there’s anything that feels better than going for – and achieving – a goal on your own, it’s going after a goal together and then celebrating when you both reach it. Breeze and I set little goals and big goals that come with little rewards and big ones. We recently reached a huge milestone goal and took a vacation together as our reward. We were holding off taking an awesome trip until we’d “earned it.”
I know there are a lot of cons on this list, but as I said, I really do like exercising with my girlfriend more than not. Are any of these cons deal-breakers for you? Leave a comment and let me know what you think. Why, or why don’t you work out with your significant other?