It is that time of year when gyms become overly crowded with new members who have New Years’ resolutions. After 3-4 weeks’ the new members start to fade away and many of them drop out of their exercise program. A reason many of the new members stop exercising is they are unable to adhere to a workout program.
They will use many different excuses, like they do not have the time to exercise, or they do not feel the need to exercise. According to the American Council on Exercise, “A perceived lack of time is the most commonly used excuse for not engaging in exercise” (ACE).
One way to help members adhere to an exercise program is getting a gym buddy. A good gym buddy can help an individual come a long way in their exercise program. A good gym buddy can help you when it comes to achieving your fitness goals.
The Benefits of a Gym Buddy
✓ Become More Motivated
A good gym buddy can motivate you to commit to an exercise program. On days when you do not feel like going to the gym, or pushing yourself, your gym buddy can make you get over that hurdle. You will feel an obligation to go to the gym because your gym buddy is depending on you, even though you do not want to.
Your gym buddy will also help push you during the workout to ensure you are giving it a good effort. By getting you to go to the gym and pushing yourself when you do not want to, you are already bettering yourself because of your gym buddy. You can also play this role by pushing your gym buddy, and convincing them to workout with you when they are not in the mood. A bad workout is better than no workout at all.
✓ Reach Your Fitness Goals
When you have a good gym buddy, they are often either at the same fitness level as you, or a little more fit than you. By being in the same fitness level as your gym buddy, you can both follow the same gym program, and have similar progress. You can both share similar fitness goals because you are starting off in the same fitness level.
You can help push one another to reach those goals when the other one is not feeling like putting in a lot of effort. Another good gym buddy is one who is a little more fit than you because they can bring a lot to the table. They can help teach you new exercises, and push you to succeed. You might start to exercise at a more intense pace to keep up with them, leading to more benefits.
✓ Make Exercising Fun
Many individuals new to exercise do not adhere to it because they find it boring, or are not entertained by the idea of exercise. A good gym buddy can change this feeling, and make exercise fun. Having a gym buddy forms a bond, and brings a social aspect into exercise. The reason many individuals engage in an activity is because of the social interaction it brings about. A strong bond can lead to eliminating the fears and boredom individuals find when they engage in exercise. Making exercise fun leads to more adherence to exercise, more progress, and more overall benefits.
✓ Learn New Exercises
Everybody in a gym possesses different knowledge about exercise and has different strengths and weaknesses. You can learn something different about exercise from each individual. Many individuals are following different exercise programs, and have a different background on fitness. A gym buddy can teach you new exercises and programs to incorporate into your knowledge of fitness.
✓ Correct Your Form
A good gym buddy will watch your form as you perform each exercise, and give you feedback. Having someone there to critique your form during exercise can provide many benefits. Correcting your form can lead to more muscle hypertrophy, and a reduced risk of injury.
✓ Become Competitive
A good gym buddy can bring competition of out you, while engaging in exercise. Friendly competition leads to a better effort, and higher intensity during workouts. Higher intensity workout leads to an increase in muscle hypertrophy.
✓ Bring Variety to an Exercise Program
Having a gym buddy will bring variety to your exercise program. Instead of following the same old program that you are used to, you can try out exercises your gym buddy does. You can combine both of your experiences and knowledge to bring variety to a program. You can switch up ideas of workouts weekly, or include both of your ideas into one workout. Variety to an exercise program will help prevent plateauing, and lead to more gains.
Take Home Message
There are many benefits that result from having a gym buddy. If you are struggling to adhere to an exercise program, or are beginning to find exercise to be boring, finding a good gym buddy can solve these problems. According to Irwin’s findings, “Group exercise is associated with a number of positive physical activity behaviors and represents a promising strategy for physical activity promotion and improved public health” (Irwin, 2016). A gym buddy can lead to many benefits, and an increase in exercise adherence, so why not find a gym buddy?