How Working Out as a Couple Can Make You Stronger

The gym may seem like an odd place to connect with your partner but it can improve overall happiness, help you reach goals, and support each other in new ways.

Published April 4, 2023
couple giving high five to each other while doing push up

Couples who play together, stay together! While hitting the gym may not seem like the most romantic activity, it's actually a great place to build more than just muscles. Couples that workout together are more likely to find their stride and can be better equipped to handle the many hurdles that arise throughout their relationship. Learn why, plus tips on how to make couple workouts work for you.

Reasons Couples That Workout Together Are Happier & Healthier

Working out with your significant other can really HITT the spot! You owe it to yourself to consider taking the lunge together at the gym. It might just be the next big step forward in your relationship. Explore some of the benefits to help you decide what's best for you.

It Can Improve Your Overall Happiness

Young woman with training partner preparing to lift barbell in gym

As Reese Witherspoon's character Elle Woods said in Legally Bonde, "Exercise gives you endorphins. Endorphins make you happy. Happy people just don't shoot their husbands, they just don't." Working out releases these happy hormones, making you more cheerful throughout the day. Interestingly enough, these feelings are enhanced when you workout with your significant other.

Research shows that on days where romantic partners exercised together, they noted being "more satisfied with their relationship compared to days when they exercised without their partner." These experiences also subtly put you in sync and on a similar schedule. This means more opportunities to bond.

It Can Motivate You to Stick to Your Goals

Sometimes getting off the couch and to the gym can seem like an impossible task. Having a person to push you to get up and move will not only help you stick to your goals, but it can also make the experience much more exciting. Studies also show that if one person out of the pair is just slightly better at performing a specific task, the other individual is more likely to push themselves.

Similarly, the person who is more skilled at the task will end up working out longer than if they were exercising by themselves. This benefits both parties and these perks never really go away. In fact, they can create a bit of competition, which can be a lot of fun, as well as natural opportunities to root for your partner and share in their accomplishments. This will increase happiness and the motivation to stick to your goals.

It Can Improve Your Sex Life

Did you know that an increase in adrenaline can trigger a boost in attraction? Better yet, for heterosexual couples who workout together, studies show that "male sweat contains a compound that appears to boost women's mood, sexual arousal, and stress hormone levels." Talk about revving your engines! It's also important to note that as you workout more often, you'll often begin to feel better overall and gain confidence. This confidence can make individuals more excited about certain activities.

It Can Lead to Other Healthy Habits

Working out is a wonderful way to prioritize your physical health. It's also a spectacular strategy for sparking other healthy habits. How you may ask? Fuel matters when it comes to getting in a good workout, and if both members of the relationship are dedicated to bettering their well-being, it's more likely that they will begin eating better together. This can make achieving weight loss goals much easier and let partners feel supported in this venture, which can further strengthen their relationship.

Possible Stressors for Couples to Consider When Exercising Together

The benefits of couples working out together are clear, but there are a few considerations to keep in mind.

Couples Need Similar Staminas

wellness couple doing kettlebell weight exercise

Prior to syncing up your workout sessions, it is important for couples to think about their preferred workout styles and their level of expertise. If one person can handle 20 minutes on the treadmill and the other is a marathon runner, both individuals probably won't benefit from the experience. This can lead to resentment, which is not what you want. Additionally, if yoga brings you Zen, but your boyfriend favors the bench, it is likely that one person will not fully enjoy the workout in the way they usually do. How do you remedy this?

Helpful Hack

Schedule your workouts at the same time and then plan to try one exercise that is out of your norm. This ensures that you both get the level of workout that you desire, but it still gives you the opportunity to engage with your partner.

Choosing one or two individuals activities that are out of your comfort zone also creates those magical movie moments where one person in the relationship has to get up close to show their partner the movement required to complete the task. This leads to intimate moments that can spark desire.

Couples Are Looking for Specific Results

If you and your significant other just want to get fit and better your cardiovascular health, then get moving with your partner! However, if you have very specific weight loss goals, it is important to remember that different workouts will benefit different people in different ways.

Moreover, men are more likely to lose weight faster than women. This can lead to moments of jealously and frustration. While this isn't a deal breaker, it is something to keep in mind throughout the process.

Tips on How to Get Started Working Out With Your Partner

If working out seems like a solid way for you and your partner to build your bond, there are a few things to keep in mind.

Talk About Your Current Workouts

In order for this to work for both members of the couple, you need to have similar staminas and workout styles. When planning your workouts with your partner, set expectations early. How many workouts do you want to do a week? How many do you want to do together? Are there some days that you want a little 'me time'?

Talk to your partner to figure out where your workout strengths and approaches align. If they don't, then couples can also consider trying these activities together:

  • Warming up before workouts at the same gym
  • Post workout stretching
  • Trying out a new couples style workout classes or fitness activities to do together
  • Going on walks or signing up for 5K runs

Discuss Your Individual Needs

Some people love working out in groups while others prefer having their workout sessions be a time to detox from a stressful day. Make sure to have an honest conversation with your significant other about how many times a week you would prefer to workout alone. This can help to prevent feelings from being hurt when your person is in the mood for a solo gym session.

Consider Playing Workout Roulette

Another great way to make sure that everyone gets what they want is to set a day and time that you and your partner can commit to working out every week. Then, write down 10 workouts that you each love to do or want to try. Throw them all in a hat and draw your workout each week. This gives you some variety and lets you try out workouts that you may have never considered before. You never know, you two may find a new passion that you can both enjoy!

Get Moving Every Week

By talking about this ahead of time, you can prevent conflict and ensure that you get the most out of working out together. The benefits of couples exercising are real; with a little effort, you can make the most working out alongside your partner, building a better relationship while you're improving your health!

How Working Out as a Couple Can Make You Stronger