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Holiday Fitness Survival Guide: Enlist a Friend as a Fitness Buddy

I have always found that when November rolls around, I lose a little of my fitness steam. The combination of the daylight saving time change, the holidays, and the first sneezes of cold and flu season just seem to zap my energy and eat up my free time. In this season of giving thanks and just plain giving, it is difficult to put myself and my workout first. That is why Fall is the best season to enlist a friend as a fitness buddy. Nothing beats working out with a friend for motivation and morale. Plus, you get to gab while burning calories. Here are some of the benefits of enlisting a fitness friend.

  • You might flake on yourself and skip the gym time, but would you flake on your friend? I hope not.
  • If you want to run outside and your friend only uses an elliptical, instead of thinking your relationship as fitness buddies won't work, think of it as a cross-training opportunity. The two of you can also find a compromise and try step or strip aerobics together.
  • You get to share the burden of planning your workout. This is a good way to mix it up and learn new moves without wasting time at the gym.
  • Working out with a buddy can decrease the boredom of repetitive exercise significantly, so you are more likely to work out longer and possibly harder. Sometimes a little friendly competition keeps the fitness fires burning.

Before you jump into a new relationship, check out the article Pair Up to Pare Down over at Shape. It offers a few suggestions to make sure your partnership with your workout buddy actually works out.

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dd-sugar dd-sugar 8 years
It's hard finding someone to work out with as early as I do and sometimes I have just a bit of time but want to do something. I just purchased more workout DVDs that feature very short routines (10 Minute Solution series). I'm always motivated to exercise so maybe I can motivate a friend to come join me.
crayolasky crayolasky 8 years
Yeah, this is a good idea. I need a gym/running buddy! It's too bad I have a different schedule than most of my friends. However, I don't really lack motivation to work out as I am diligent about it. It's more about time and scheduling it for me. I am one of those people with a black and white personality, so if something doesn't go as planned (like a workout) I get very frustrated... but tend to bounce back fairly easily anyway.
ilanac13 ilanac13 8 years
i wish that i had friends to go to the gym with but i don't ever really feel like doing that. i try to get my fiance to go with me but he isn't a gym type person (which kills me). i think that having someone around to help motivate me would be GREAT this time of year.
jdeprima jdeprima 8 years
A friend of mine works near me, so we have a standing "date" to run a full lap of Central Park (just shy of a 10K) every Wednesday after work. She's more athletic than I am, so she pushes me to run faster than I would on my own. We managed the whole park in 57 minutes this week, by far my best time for that distance.
runningesq runningesq 8 years
One of my girlfriends recently moved to my city -- she's half a mile away and we had our first run together last night. It's SO nice to be able to run at night now!
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