Health & Fitness|Issue 243
Friends who train together get better gains together – that’s the overriding message from the latest sports science, which shows that working out with a partner ups the amount of exercise we do. And that’s not all – research from wellness booking app, MINDBODY (uk.mindbodyonline.com), reveals that more than half of gym-goers say exercising with a friend is more fun than moving alone, while one in five believe that having a workout partner makes them less self-conscious and more able to push themselves. Some people even feel encouraged to run further when training with a buddy. A study in the journal Nature Communications shows that joggers cover an extra 0.3km for every extra kilometre their pal clocks.
But while it’s clear that getting fit with a friend could enhance your health, your exercise buddy needn’t be a best pal – nearly a quarter of folk work out with family members, and recent data reveals that regularly walking a canine comrade could make you four times more likely to meet your exercise RDA. Working out with another provides the motivation many need to keep going, it can also be a great confidence booster. ‘If people attend a fitness class on their own, they may feel nervous because they don’t know anybody else, or worry that regular attendees have established friendships,’ says Ben Edwards, self-confidence coach at MINDBODY. ‘Exercise can be incredibly sociable, and doing it with a partner can act as a safety blanket.’ We speak to three women whose workout buddies have given them the get-up-and-go to keep fit, whatever the weather.
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