For much of my adult life, I have had a passion and interest in fitness. Now don’t get me wrong, I am no elite athlete, but I have always found enjoyment in letting go of the stresses of life through exercise. Whether it be going on a run on the trail near my home, lifting weights, interval training or even dance classes – you won’t see me say no to the chance to break a sweat.
Imagine my excitement when I met a man who shared my passion for health and fitness. “I have hit the jackpot!” I thought to myself, as we stood in the kitchen preparing dinner one evening (did I mention he is an amazing cook?!). But then he asked me a question that, for whatever reason, I was not prepared for: “So, when do you want to start working out together?”
I gave him a look like he had lost his mind. Work out together? Why!? You see, I had always viewed my time in the gym, or on a run, as ME time. A time for me to unwind, clear my head, block out the world and get re-centered. And now this other person was trying to cut into my ME time. How was I going to tell him I didn’t want him to tag along without hurting his feelings?
Picking up on my subtle-as- a-hurricane expression of derision, I watched the love of my life’s face change from excitement to rejection. It broke my heart. At that moment, though it had always been my rule to “Never workout with a significant other”, I conceded to let him accompany me to my gym and workout with me.
At first, I was worried it would be awkward or distracting. But to my extreme surprise, it wasn’t weird at all – in fact, it was FUN! During each workout, I could feel us bettering ourselves as individuals while at the same time growing closer and closer as a couple. I went from tolerating his company at the gym, to enjoying it, to looking forward to it. We were working together, motivating and encouraging each other to achieving new goals.
And this kind of teamwork started to overflow into all aspects of our life – strengthening our bond both inside and outside the gym. We started doing more things with each other, as opposed to next to each other. We found ourselves going on more weekend adventures around the city. We started talking more about our life goals and ways we could support each other in achieving them.
So, whether you are looking to get something more out of your workouts or maybe increase the closeness in your relationship, it might be time to look at combining the two worlds. After my own experience, I am now a firm believer that a couple who sweats together, stays together!