So it’s almost 6pm and that class you booked starts in an hour so you really should get ready, but then again……the sofa looks pretty tempting and you have been meaning to watch the latest episode of Mr Selfridge maybe you’ll miss the class, just this once, who is really going to know? Sound familiar? Lack of motivation can strike anyone at any time, particularly if you have had a busy day and the thought of purposely putting yourself through any kind of physical exercise sounds like the least appealing thing ever!! Trust me, it happens to everyone, including me!!
I spend my days teaching Pilates and trying to motivate my clients to move more and really enjoy exercising but sometimes its hard to follow my own advice. So what do I do?? I enlist the help of my workout buddy and she helps get my butt in gear and keeps me from skipping a session!!! Plus theres the added bonus of actually getting to spend some time with a great friend and catch up on all the gossip as we sweat our way through each workout!
In a world where we only ever seem to be getting busier its hard to fit everything in so you really want to make that workout count. We humans are social creatures, it is in our DNA to seek out social interaction and this fundamental urge can help to make even the most repetitive exercise more entertaining – think of how much more fun a brisk walk is when its peppered with the latest gossip or used as an opportunity to vent your frustrations about work or your other half!
Now as a Pilates Instructor I don’t actively enough my clients to chat their way through my sessions but even just knowing your friend is in the class with you and sharing the odd look to say “man alive this is hard” can help to keep you motivated to push your limits until the end. Working out with a friend can also expose you to new forms of exercise you might never have the confidence to try by yourself!! Maybe that HIIT class doesn’t seem so scary with some backup from a friend??
How to chose the right workout partner….
This can be a little tricky, you don’t want to train with someone who is massively different from you in their health/fitness perspective! Ideally someone with the same mindset works best to keep you both motivated and working towards your goals! It wouldn’t be the best idea to workout with your most critical and opinionated friend who tends to be a little too honest and could possibly derail all your hard work by focusing on the negatives!
After all your hard work training with a friend also means that you can feel justified grabbing a quick coffee or a healthy juice after your session to plan your next workout and monitor how you are getting on. My workout buddy and I use this coffee stop to give each other really honest feedback about how we feel we are progressing and because she is in most sessions with me it feels less intimidating and judgemental and I’ve really grown to value her opinion.
Still not convinced? Research carried out by fitness giant Virgin Active of over 1,000 gym goers has shown that women in particular train harder and more consistently when they do so with a friend or in a group. You are much less likely to let a friend down for that gym date and for most people (especially men!) the healthy competition serves to spur you on to finish that last gruelling set or to hold that plank for just a few seconds more!!
So what are you waiting for?? Grab a friend and draw up a plan of attack!! Let me know how you get on! Who is your workout buddy and does it spur you on?