Temptations seem to hang around us in form of foods at joints, in the refrigerator, the kitchen, at the canteen etc. At times when one is low and wants to jeopardize all the effort put in for weight management and fitness the need arises for a fitness friend or companion to prevent dropping out.
Studies have shown that women who regularly support their friends have lower blood pressure and experience less stress. In a new study, researchers studied health habits in an online social network. They paired participants of similar age, fitness levels, diet preference, and body mass, and they also matched some participants randomly. After seven weeks, results showed people paired with similar fitness “friends” were three times more likely to make healthier choices than those who were randomly paired.
Other studies have suggested people eat more with friends, and our surroundings can also influence the choices we make. (Seriously, who can pass up a hot dog at a baseball game?!)
When trying to stay fit and healthy, look for some extra incentive in the form of a fitness companion,
- Friends: Pals can be a sources of empathy and encouragement, especially when you have similar goals on weight loss & management. If you have not been helping your friend around, Now is the, time. For helping your friends can help you maintain lower blood pressure and reduction in your own stress. It can help you build confidence as well as cultivating the types of interpersonal and intrapersonal skills that will improve all of your relationships and that can in turn continue your own personal sense of fitness and more.
- Fitness Apps: Smartphones and tablet computers have opened up a whole new world of on-the-go possibilities. No longer are we tied to a gym or a rigid workout schedule. No more waiting for a personal trainer to tell us how well – or how poorly – we are doing. Mobile devices and fitness apps put all that information right there at our fingertips.
- Pet: Experts are now finding that the ideal fitness partner just might lie in the animal kingdom. According to a recent study, dog owners are more likely to lead an active lifestyle than those who don’t own dogs. They also tend to walk faster and for longer distances when accompanied by their favorite canines. The study was conducted by Mars Petcare, a popular pet food manufacturer. Just over 1,000 adults were surveyed, and the study found that of all the walks taken by the study’s participants, 66% were for the purpose of walking a dog. Roughly 25% of those surveyed said that they make routine visits to outdoor spaces such as parks as a direct result of owning a dog. The study also found that roughly 44% of dog owners over the age of 65 exercised at least once a week thanks to their dogs, indicating that dog ownership could be even more important for elderly citizens who might not feel motivated to exercise otherwise.
- Family: While you are looking around for a workout partner in order to get fit, just a hand shake away is one in form of mother and/or a daughter. Age doesn’t matter if you have a daughter who is a pre-schooler, grade schooler, teenager and so on. This will not help in building your physical fitness but what you stand to gain is a emotional bonding which will only get stronger with time and age.
Your husband, wife, mother, mother-in-law, all make for fun partners to get you out of the house and moving.
- Local Events: Attending different types of events like, race for the homeless, abused etc can provide you with a wide pool of potential fitness partners. Rediscovering the fun in your fitness program will help motivate you for the next challenge. Set a goal to try a totally new activity like stand-up paddle boarding or jump in a game of pick-up basketball. I think it is important to constantly surround yourself with champions—champions of all walks of life.
- Work place: Your co-worker may not be able to hit the local gym with you, but he/she might be more than willing to do a lunch time walk or more. It’s a great way to get to know your fellow employees or even have a quick brainstorming session while you exercise. In case your job involves travelling, for fitness options, you can place in your luggage a Resist-A-Tube or any of the home exercise tubing, a stability ball, jump rope or exercise video. Hotel-room workout can consists of push-ups, sit-ups and dips. A resistance band is a great travel workout aid because it’s an effective resistance-training tool and yet it folds up into the tiniest of spaces.
- Fitness Trainer: Motivating people to stick to their physical fitness routine is just one of the duties of a fitness trainer. A trainer needs to work with an individual and plan and change the exercise routine around to keep one from getting bored and at the same time plan exercises that will have a positive and continuous effect on the body. The fitness trainer’s education and training is very important so find out as much as you can about his qualifications on the job; a good idea about his aptitude for the instructor’s position is by looking at his physique and over all well-being that is a good indication of his health condition.
- Gym: When you join a gym, chances are a lot of the people who are going there are looking for the similar goals. They are also likely to be located in your area. Many gyms have post boards where you can see others who are looking for fitness partners and it’s a great way to hook up.
- On-line Programs– like the one offered at Women Fitness.
In case you already have company, keep hanging on.