10 Reasons To Get Yourself A Workout Buddy

10 Reasons To Get Yourself A Workout Buddy


Good friends don’t let their friends not workout. While Dione Warwick taught us, “That’s What Friends Are For,” and Bill Withers understood, “We all need somebody to lean on…” it was Bette Midler who pointed out that friends are the “Wind Beneath My Wings.” Maybe they were really pointing the way to workout buddies long before research understood the value of a partner with whom to exercise.


When it comes to exercise science, research supports these ideas and the fact that those who engage in physical activity generally enjoy it more when they do it with others, workout buddies, rather than when they exercise alone.


Sure there are those who prefer their solo workouts, but when you exercise with others, your feelings of fatigue decreases, your energy increases and you are more likely to workout more intensely and for longer periods of time.


Imagine packing your gym bag, getting to the gym, talking with nobody, working out completely alone – even at home – and contrast that to having a friend or group of people who look forward to seeing you, who push you forward, pat you on the back, celebrate your forward movement. See the difference?


Of course, if you have a friend who’s leaning on you to show up at bootcamp, or the track, or the gym and workout with you, it’s unlikely you are going to let that person down, right? That’s a workout partner is so motivating.


There are so many more reasons to find a workout buddy, from insuring that you’ll actually show up to workout on any given day, to increasing your self-confidence in trying new and novel workout routines, bringing fun to your exercise activities and insuring you reach your goals. But perhaps the famed Köhler Effect is one of the more unknown reasons, and perhaps one of the most important. This says, simply, you’ll maximize your motivation when your workout buddy is about 40% better than you. Why? Because who wants to be the weakest link? More than 40% better and you’ll give up. Less and you won’t be challenged. So find that buddy who is in that range and watch yourself push yourself more.


To summarize, I just touched on these 10 reasons to find a compatible workout partner:


1. You’ll enjoy exercising more.

2. Your feelings of fatigue will decrease.

3. Your energy level will increase.

4. You are more likely to workout more intensely.

5. You’ll enjoy the time passing so you’ll workout longer more easily.

6. Your accountability partner will help insure that you’ll actually show up.

7. You won’t give in to your list of excuses.

8. Your self-confidence will increase to try new, more challenging and novel workout routines.

9. You’ll have more fun during and after your workouts.

10. You’ll increase the likelihood of reaching your goals.


So just what should you look for in a workout buddy to help you fuel your motivation? Obviously, choose someone who is a good role model, who is positive, is in that 40% range we described, and is someone you like.


Watch out for someone whose fitness goals are far below or above yours, whose schedule is far different than yours, and whose list of excuses NOT to workout is far longer than yours.


Today, with so much of life being “virtual,” apps like zogsports.com, wellsquad.com, WorkoutBuddies.com, meetup.com, RunKeeper, Teemo, and Fitocracy easily provides the opportunity to connect with others.

But it was the Jackson 5 who years ago summed up the best workout buddy yet…”I’ll reach out my hand to you, I’ll have faith in all you do…Just call my name and I’ll be there.”

Dr. Michael Mantell

Michael R. Mantell, Ph.D. has been providing psychological and coaching services for nearly 5 decades and continues to empower positive change among his global clients to enhance life in every way. He is a highly sought-after healthcare professional coach, an executive and team building consultant, and a longtime specialist in cognitive behavioral coaching.

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