Perhaps the thought of sharing the barbell with your significant other makes you cringe. You’re doing just fine without seeing each other mopping your brows, and the thought of going head-to-head in the gym is the last thing on your mind. But you may well be wrong to write it off. New research suggests there’s a whole host of benefits to taking to the treadmill or flocking to the free weights with the person you love.

You perform better

You perform better

You really do perform better

While many may pass this off as myth, the latest evidence says otherwise. Sharing your workout with your partner could genuinely give your workout results a boost. A recent study undertaken by PureGym, in partnership with the Sport Science Agency, looked at how a selection of couples performed both together and alone. Across a range of activities, the experiment found a 23% improvement in scores when the couples were together.

It provides support and encouragement…

In the study, where couples performed one after the other on an activity, they could spur on their partner from the side lines. One such activity was a 20 minute wattbike session – where the distance covered was measured. When the couples had their significant other around to support them, they cycled an average of 0.9km further – a 14% improvement in performance. 

…And some healthy competition

For some activities, the couples were asked to work side by side. This clearly provided some healthy competition, as the participants saw huge increases in performance. Where they were asked to perform a plank for as long as they could, they bettered their solo scores by an average of 33 seconds, 30% better overall.

You feel better about working out

To keep focussed in the gym, and to make sure you keep on going back, it’s vital you feel that all-important sense of reward. The findings of a recent survey of 2,000 British adults suggests that sense of positivity and achievement is amplified when you work out with a loved one. 48% of those in a relationship said that they felt better after working out with a partner compared to exercising alone.

You work harder (and you know it)

While the evidence suggests we see better results when we couple up at the gym, it also seems we’re aware of it. Two in five women and a third of men said they clearly felt they’d worked harder, while only 8% said they worked less hard in a pair.

You spend valuable time together

In today’s busy world, it can feel nigh-on impossible to get any time together on a day-to-day basis. Even when you’re hanging out at home, it’s really easy to get sucked into checking social media and playing games on an iPad that you barely talk. By hitting the gym together a few days a week, you’ll be guaranteeing you get some real quality time full of conversation, support and laughter.

You find your partner more sexually attractive

Who knew that getting your pulses racing could make your more attracted to each other? There must be some magic in spotting each other and sharing the barbell, as well over a third of respondents in the survey admitted to feeling more sexually attracted to their partner when they exercise together.

You feel more confident about your own appearance

It’s not just your partner you’ll perceive as more attractive when you work out together. Over 30% of people in a relationship said they felt more confident about the way they look for having exercised with a significant other.

It’ll make your relationship stronger…

It’s no surprise really – given the extra time you spend together and that you’ll be more attracted to each other – that a couples workout will make your relationship stronger. When asked, a whopping three quarters of men, and 65% of women, said that working out with a loved one had made their bond sturdier as a result. 

…And last longer

With your relationship stronger, you spending plenty of time together and being more attracted to each other than ever – your relationship’s likely to last. 58% of people who train with their partner believe that it has made their relationship last longer.

Well there you have it. It seems that couples who train together really do stay together!

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