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Ways to Get Your Significant Other to Exercise

Get Your Partner to Exercise: No Nagging, Bribing, or Insulting Required

Fitness may be a priority for you, but your husband, boyfriend, or partner might be another story. If you wish your better half would include more exercise in their day whether it's to relieve stress, drop a few pounds, or as a way to spend more time together, I'm sure you've discovered that nagging, bribing, or insulting them are surefire ways to get them to shun sweating it out. Plus, it won't make you feel very good if you're constantly pressuring your partner to get moving. Your significant other is more likely to start working out and stick with it if he or she feels like it's their idea, so give these tactics a try.

  • Work the money angle. Mention that the gym you want to go to offers huge deals if you join with a friend. Who doesn't jump at the opportunity to save a little moolah?
  • Speak their language. If saving dough isn't exciting enough, lure your significant other with talk about air-conditioning, deals on massages, and huge TVs to watch sports and The Food Network.
  • Make it about your dog. If you have a four-legged friend, mention that you went to the vet, and your doc is really concerned about recent weight gain leading to a doggie heart attack. That'll pull on the old heart strings a little, and will certainly inspire regular walks or runs with Fido, but really, Fido will be walking or running them (wink).
  • Surprise, you're exercising! There's no backing down if you casually sign the two of you up for a Partner Yoga retreat, salsa dance class, or dodgeball team.
  • Throw them a compliment. Come home from the gym all upset and say, "I really wish you were with me to spot me on the machines because you're so patient and strong. I'd much rather have you help me than one of the random muscly dudes at the gym. Could you meet me after work tomorrow?" Flattery can work wonders and maybe once they show up, they'll do a few sets and like it so much that you'll have yourself a permanent spotter and gym buddy.

Keep reading for more ideas.

  • Plan a romantic (fitness) date. Do something active together that's fun, so it doesn't seem like exercise. Go hiking, play tennis, go swimming in a nearby lake, or plan a weekend surfing trip. Try to do a fun physical activity together at least once a week.
  • Involve some sweet gear or gadgets. You may have to drop some cash on a GPS that tracks mileage on hiking routes, a heart rate monitor, a new armband to listen to tunes while working out, a Camelbak to stay hydrated, or some new fitness clothes.
  • Give a fitness-related gift. Treat your fave person to a session with a personal trainer, a subscription to a health mag, or golf or tennis lessons. Isn't the gift of health the best gift of all?
  • Schedule the annual exam. You can preach your health concerns till you're blue in the face, but when a phrase like, "Your high blood pressure and extra weight are putting you at risk for an early death," comes from a trusted doctor, it's a much more effective kick in the butt.
  • If all else fails, turn on the tears. Telling your other half how much you love them and want to live a long life together is sure to be emotional for both of you, and is bound to inspire a jump on the healthy boat. Use this one as a last resort.

What's your technique?

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