Gym Partner Or No Gym Partner?

August 24, 2009 by  
Filed under The Fitness Bug

find-a-gym-partnerFor as long as I can remember, I don’t think I have ever had a solid gym partner. Yes, I’ve met and trained with many people on the odd occasion, but for me I choose the solitary route because,

  1. People tend to distract my concentration and slow me down.
  2. I have UBER amounts of self-motivation.
  3. I’m quite self-aware.
  4. I enjoy my own company.

Also, when you workout alone you get to meet more people than when accompanied by a partner, because you often appear more approachable when alone. When this happens you get to learn from other peoples knowledge and experience and that knowledge and experience has been key to what Stay-Fit Bug has become up until now and towards the goals and themes of the site!

The solo route works for me, it may even work for you to, but in general you will be better off training with a partner.

Humans are built for social interaction

Get social at the gym
I first began to realise this in the early days of Athletics training. Unlike a team sport such as football or basketball, athletics training can get very lonely and you need quite a high drive and willingness to achieve to stick at it.

Mankind is also a social being by nature, and when you take away the word ‘social’ from that being, the outcome can be quite dramatic.

examples

  • Ever lived alone for the first time?
  • Ever watched the movie I AM LEGEND?

Lonely Human at the gym

Get the picture now?

This is the reason why having a gym partner is vital, because of the social benefits it brings. Lets look at all of the things that I am missing out on from being a solitary bore of a gym goer. 😉

It’s good to talk

Whether you are going to or coming from the gym, it is always great to have a good conversation along the way. It also keeps you punctual so that you actually go to the gym, and it keeps you awake and in the zone.

Goal setting

An important thing to do when striving for anything, is to set goals. Keeping to them is the hard part, but by setting them with a partner you are more likely to follow those goals through.

It doesn’t happen overnight

Most things that are worth achieving don’t. But by having that partner to cheer you on when achieving results seems to be slow, it will keep your motivation and confidence levels up.

Spot a spotter

Everyone has experienced having to shout out to someone ‘hey, can you spot me’? When you have a gym partner you have the benefit of spotting each other.

Avoid injury

As a solitary gym goer you can and will learn from others as I stated, but these people aren’t at the gym to socialize, and probably won’t be with you 24/7 to baby-sit you. Once you have a gym partner you can learn from each other and correct each other on the fly when either of you is performing an exercise incorrectly.

Share experiences

This goes hand in hand with being ‘social’. Once you have a partner, going to the gym is no longer seen as a chore (even though it never should). It can be seen as a great experience or day out, similar to going out to a bar, watching a football or basketball game or any other social activities you do when out with friends. It’s even better when you go to a good gym, as you get the full luxury treatment and you both get to work on your goals at the same time.

Competition spurs motivation

I had to leave the best till last!

Competition at the gym
If there is one thing that we all do constantly, it is comparing ourselves with others! We compare with our peers and with the famous, when we should really only be comparing and competing with ourselves. Overtime we should only compare with our past selves in order to track progress and improvement, but for the most part, due to our nature, comparing with others is what it will be.

But in regards to training, comparing with others is a huge bonus, and in this case, comparing and competing with your gym partner!

Healthy competition will spur motivation, no doubt about that. There will be days when you both finish your workouts, one of you will take your top off, the other will follow suit and the competitive talk will begin. There may even be others around comparing and stating that one of you looks better than the other. If you happen to be the one lagging behind, even though you have been following the exact same routine as your partner, watch how your competitive drive soars off into the sunset.

All of the above are all great reasons to have a gym partner, but do keep in mind that you need to have a good partner, one that,

  1. Is hard working
  2. Shares the same goals as you
  3. Has a competitive edge

And if that person is you, who knows I might drop the solitary training and take you on as my gym partner 😉

Do you train alone, or with a partner?

See you in the comments

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