When I go to the gym I have a pretty simple routine. IN – WORKOUT – OUT.
I have never been one of those people that goes to the gym to socialize. I don’t like talking too much while I’m there, especially when I’m in the middle of my workout. I also barely touch my phone unless it’s to record my load and reps, or when there’s an urgent call.
From my own experience I find that I can focus on my workouts better if i have my headphones on and there is no distractions around.
So I’ve always enjoyed training by myself. I thought it was way more effective and practical than training with someone else, until… I found a few girls that had the same training style and goals as me, than the story completely changed.
For example, my bud @arelicbrito stayed in Bali for nearly three weeks and of course she wanted to see its beauty, so we were traveling for a little bit, but we made sure we went to the gym every time we were in town and even when we went away, we had our little home workouts at whatever hotel we were staying in, using only body weight or resistance bands. It was awesome!
I was also really lucky to find other mates in Bali that love training as much as me, so no matter where we are or what equipment we have, we always get up a good sweat and share the love for fitness. We have similar goals, similar attitudes, similar levels of fitness, and motivational techniques.
I realised that having a gym partner can be really beneficial to you, IF you choose the RIGHT ones, the ones you are compatible with.
These are the things you need to look for when choosing your gym partner:
- Similar level of fitness – your partner should be on the same fitness level as you, so you both can do the same exercises, at the same speed, with same or similar loads. That makes the whole workout flow faster and easily.
- Same attitude – You should both be positive and solution-focused to help and motivate each other. You need to trust your partner and his/her ability to have your back when supporting you. You need to be considerate of each other’s time. and be on time for your sessions. Don’t keep your partner waiting every time, or keep coming up with last-minute excuses, that’s not cool.
- Similar goals – You and your partner should have similar goals, so you can programme and build your training sessions around them.
- Compatible schedules.
- Similar motivation style – some people like the “super-exciting-cheerleader” kind of motivation. Some just need to be told what to do, no messing around. Others need appreciation for their hard work, and compliments to keep it going. We all have very different motivational techniques. But you should find a partner with the same motivation style as you, so you both know the best tips, quotes and body language to motivate each other.
Once you have found the great gym bud you were looking for, you can benefit from a range of things. For example:
- Safer training – it’s like having a personal trainer! Someone motivating, spotting and checking your form at each rep, giving you feedback. You will do the same for him/her, and you will feel really good when you realise how much you can help each other. And the best thing? Its all for free!
- Increased commitment – if you like and respect your partner you won’t want to let him/her down.You will force yourself to go and meet your bud at the gym, even if you don’t really feel like going that day. You will make sure you do your best during training, because after all you are already there and you don’t want to bring your partner’s session down. Once you get going, you will feel happy and thankful that you actually went.
- Variety in workouts – This is one of my favourite things. Every time I’m with the girls we both come up with ideas for the training together. Usually when we train by ourselves, we repeat the same old exercises that we like most. When someone else is training with you, they give you new ideas, new exercises that you were not familiar with – or you didn’t like – challenging your body constantly and making the workout more fun.
- Motivation and support – your partner will be there for you at those times when you want to give up. But he is still there watching and pushing you through those last reps that are very important for improvement. If he wasn’t there, you would probably not do it, either because you are scared of not handling the weight yourself, or just lack of motivation.
- Better performance – Because your friend is there watching you and doing his best, you will perform at your best too, so you don’t feel weaker or less capable than your partner. It’s “healthy competition”, which I believe it’s really good for improving performance and strength.
- Enjoyable sessions – you and your partner will bond with, laugh at, help, encourage and motivate each other throughout the session. When it’s all done, you will feel like you have someone to share this little time of your day and have fun with, which makes going to the gym an enjoyable thing. Not a chore or obligation.
Choosing a gym partner is a commitment. If you are serious about results, then it’s a commitment you should take seriously. You’re investing your time and energy and they must commit the same to you. Otherwise you both lose precious time and energy.
In the end, a gym partner is like a travel partner, or even a mate. You need to be compatible and enjoy each other’s company, sharing similar goals and perspectives and committed to improving each other’s lives, productively together.
Good luck finding your one!
If you are ever in Bali, come train with me!!! <3