Plopping on the couch together after a hard day at work sure is cozy. Too bad it doesn't give you a nice workout. Looking for a way to stay fit and connect with your other half? Exercising together provides bonding time while also helping you amp up your fitness level and lose weight.
"Being active with your partner creates an opportunity to have fun together, reduce stress and develop fitness and good health," says Cindy Moore, a trainer with Bally Total Fitness and director of nutrition therapy at the Cleveland Clinic Foundation. "A marriage grows when partners enjoy similar interests. Exercise together, and you can motivate and encourage one another without feeling guilty that you're taking time away from your family to include exercise in your life."
So book a babysitter if you need to, then try one or all of these ideas:
Make it a class act.
Take a fitness class together, such as yoga, kickboxing or toning, then go out for a frozen yogurt or iced coffee afterward.
Recapture your honeymoon.
Pursue an outdoor sport in a romantic location. Jog or hike a trail through the woods, ski or snowshoe at the resort where you fell in love, go bicycling at a scenic park, or hold hands while ice skating.
Head to the gym and work the machines together. Riding a stationary bike while playing catch together with a medicine ball is great for burning calories and developing cardiovascular fitness as well as hand/eye coordination, says Edward Jackowski, a fitness trainer and chief executive officer of Exude Fitness in New York City. Or share earbuds: "Working out to music can also be lots of fun — you get so in synch you almost feel like you're dancing."
Smell that team spirit.
Join a softball or other organized sports league together. Playing on opposing teams promotes healthy competition, while playing on the same team engenders cooperation, Jackowski says. "On days when you're not in the mood, your partner will push you and spur you on," he says.