The Power of the workout partner – Accountability = Results!
The Power of Having a Workout Partner
In my opinion, most people don’t hire a personal trainer for his or her knowledge and experience, at least not at first.
They have often tried numerous times to get fit on their own, had multiple gym memberships (that have rarely been used!) and obsessed over online diet plans, training programmes and social media “gurus” but little has changed. They just can’t stay focused on their goals and sadly, never achieve their dream body.
It’s not that they don’t have the resources to succeed, it’s all too often, the persistence that they tend to lack.
Those that have personal trainers know that they serve the key role of increasing PERSONAL ACCOUNTABILITY – which I believe is the key ingredient in the success of your health and fitness goals.
If you don’t have access to a Personal Trainer at present, there is a very simple thing that you can do right now to increase the likelihood that you will not fall back into your bad habits and quit after two workouts… Find yourself a workout partner!
You Become The Person You Spend The Most Time With
Harvard University researchers found that obesity can be contagious. If you spend time with people who don’t treat their bodies right, you are more likely to overlook your own diet and fitness. The reverse is also true. By surrounding yourself with happy, healthy people you will see your own habits start to change.
Sometimes it’s difficult to cut out friends and family who lead an unhealthy lifestyle but you can always add new ones that will encourage you to make a positive change.
Your chosen workout partner should be somebody that is actively working toward the same goals as you are. Seeing their dedication is often enough to make you more persistent. This sort of positive peer pressure comes in incredibly handy when you are first starting out and you need all of the momentum you can get.
Accountability and Motivation
I often tell my clients to treat their gym session as they would an important work appointment. While this change of mindset can be incredibly beneficial, you are still more likely to cancel a workout session than a business meeting. It is much easier to cancel when nobody else is involved.
When you have a workout partner, your plans immediately become more difficult to cancel. Not only do you let yourself down, you let them down too.
Whats more, even if you choose to have a remote workout partner or a remote PT, psychologically knowing that you have an agreement and you would be letting them down if you don’t put in the time doing the work (nutrition or exercise) is a powerful motivator.
In terms of accountability, I have never seen a tool quite as effective as having another human to “answer to”. There are so many progress tracking systems — mobile or desktop apps, keeping a journal, ticking off days where you work out and trying to keep a streak etc. These are all much easier to lie to than a person.
Simply having a living breathing person to check in on you makes you much more responsible in doing what you said you would do.
Finding a workout partner
In an ideal world, we would all have a loyal friend willing to embark on a body transformation journey with us. Friends work well if your ambitions are aligned and you are roughly on a similar level in terms of fitness and motivation. Avoid a big mismatch in ability or fitness levels because it will just leave one of you demoralised and the other under-challenged. The great thing about working out with friends is you are less likely to ditch them or somehow escape when the going gets tough!
The gym class hero
We all have different routines and chances are that your current goals are different than those of your friends and family. Maybe you want to try proper weight lifting but all of your friends are stuck on doing hours of low intensity cardio.
Well, an simple way to get a fitness buddy is to simply start a conversation with someone at your gym. This tends to feel less awkward if you are taking a class together.
So perhaps at your next yoga or spinning class you might want to suggest buddying up with someone to spot you for the *really* effective stuff of weight training.
Training with a trainer
As I alluded to above, training with a personal trainer can be beneficial for a great number of reasons. They can help you define a proper training and nutrition programme and increase your personal sense of accountability.
And if you are already working with a personal trainer, you could ask them to recommend a workout partner. Considering they know your personal fitness goals and interests better than anyone else, personal trainers are the perfect workout buddy matchmakers!
If you’re a personal trainer yourself (or want to know what to expect from an excellent personal trainer) check out my book.
Trusted online programmes
Most of what is online and on YouTube is wishful thinking and designed by its very nature to get clicks. It’s really tough to know exactly who you can trust online.
With that being said, home coaching products with accountability built in to the system itself can be highly effective. That’s why my own online training programme is for those who want to get a head start but also seek credible advice from someone with realistic claims that is not just trying to make a quick buck online!
Free copy of the Can DO Plan
With all of the above in mind, I am looking for women to get an advanced free trial of my online video trainer, the Can DO Plan. There are currently four spots left so please do get in touch. This will feature not only hours of video content that comes in the Can DO Plan but a free hour phone consultation with me at the outset of the programme to make sure you get the most out of it and regular ‘accountability calls’ with me to see how things are going – just email me on email@example.com with a short note on your fitness goals and we’ll be in touch with the winners of the free places.