Should You Work Out As a Couple?

Learn the positive and negative consequences of working out together

should you do a couples workout?
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A couples workout sounds like a fun and romantic idea. After all, who wouldn't want to spend a little extra time with their loved one? But many times exercising together just doesn't work. Be sure that you consider all the pros and cons of working out together before you set up an exercise program with your spouse.

The Couples Workout: Pros and Cons

Pros

  • Couples can provide encouragement to exercise. Your spouse may be the best motivator to get off the couch and exercise, especially when the workout will be completed together. One recent study found that couples who had a sense that they were "in this together" were able to encourage each other more effectively to exercise on a daily basis.  In addition, the couple's shared beliefs about exercise influenced the amount of effort they put into sticking to a program. 
     
  • Partners hold each other accountable. It's easy to skip a workout if no one knows that you skipped it. But if you exercise with your spouse, that won't happen. Your sweetie will hold you accountable. Your wife or husband can also provide helpful reminders about upcoming workouts and even help you with daily chores if necessary to make the workout happen.
     
  • Quality time together. If you feel like you don't get enough alone time with your spouse, a couples workout may be the perfect solution.  Exercise is a form of intimacy, so a quick jog together or weight loss cycling session may help you to feel more connected - even if the workout is a short one.

Cons

  • Exercise can create a power imbalance. If one partner is fit and the other is not, a couple's workout may not be a good idea. One partner may feel inadequate, especially if the fitter spouse takes on an uninvited or harsh coaching role during the workouts.
     
  • Too much time together? Many people use their workout as their much-needed time alone. If your workouts are your only chance to get away and if you find that your independent workouts help you to be a better partner, then don't give them up to exercise together. Or consider doing a couples workout just once or twice per week.
     
  • Scheduling may be tough. Finding time to exercise can be much more difficult when there are two schedules to consider. For some couples, this may mean that workouts don't get completed - which isn't healthy for anyone.  Be sure to consider the logistics - not just the romance - before you invest in a couples workout program.
     

The Bottom Line: Should You Exercise With Your Spouse?

There are certainly many good reasons to work out with your husband or your wife.  In fact, a recent lifestyle survey conducted by vouchercloud found that 85% couples who work out together say that it improved their relationship. But just because it works for some people, doesn't mean that it will work for you. Consider all the pros and cons before you scrap your independent program for a couples workout.

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