Let’s be honest, while a solo workout can be holistically fulfilling – mentally, physically, emotionally – there is no comparison for a solid couple session. Hence, it seems fitting in the month of Valentine to discuss how a time synonymous with chivalry, fine dining, chocolate and roses, can become a great time to engage in a motivated couple’s workout (friends work just as well).
The formula for loving exercise is simple: do workouts that involve things you enjoy – or in this case, people. The first-time exerciser tends to think of running, walking or gym-based activities as the ‘go-to workouts’, but thinking outside the box (and incorporating a partner) can make working out both fun and effective.
Here are five great couple’s workouts to try:
1) Have a Fist Fight
One of the best partner workouts is boxing. Fresh air? Tick. Aggression release? Tick. Killer cardio? Tick. Boxing is also a high-intensity workout – so it is a great fat burner. It targets the whole body, from legs and butt, to arms and abs. As well as having both strength and cardio benefits, boxing also works to increase coordination and agility. And it’s appropriate for the beginner through to the Mohammed Ali-type.
2) Paddle Love Boats
Love a bit of adventure and getting your feet wet (literally)? A tandem kayak can be a ripper workout that is both challenging and romantic. It is a great low-impact workout that is also a wonderful opportunity for teamwork, quality time, and peace and quiet. Your whole body needs to be strong and balanced to efficiently steer the kayak, and being an unfamiliar movement means it is even more demanding on mind and muscles alike.
3) Ride into the Sunset
Another fitting workout for the outdoorsy couple is bike riding. You can be the cutest couple in town on a tandem bike, or simply saddle up on your own bikes and ride side by side. It’s a fun way to explore the road less travelled, to get out amongst it, or simply ride aimlessly together. Cycling has proven cardio benefits, and is great for joints, especially knees. A leisurely bike ride can burn up to 300 calories!
4) Walk Hand in Hand
They do say ‘the world is your backyard’ – so it would be remiss to not mention the simple joys of a couple’s hike. From bush-bashing to coastal strolls, a hike with your significant other can be a fantastic way to get the heart rate high, fresh air in the lungs, and sneak in some one-on-one joy.
5) Dance the Night Away
From walking feet to dancing feet, any couple can enjoy dancing. It’s intimate, a little bit tricky, and a lot of fun! A variety of dance classes are on offer depending on what tickles your fancy – and it doesn’t matter if you’re a terribly uncoordinated twosome, or a jazzy sharp-footed pair. It is a wonderful way to get a cardio fix, as well as working coordination, balance, agility and muscle memory.
It really is true that hinging exercise around something that you enjoy, and involving your ‘other half’, can make working out a special time that you share. You can set common goals, or just have a bit of fun. But either way, the more you get creative and experiment, the more enjoyable exercise will become.