Ever wonder why CrossFit or Team in Training or Spinning classes are so popular? Well … there is the whole pushing your body and getting fit part. And with Team in Training is it about raising money for charity. But – the real reason they are so popular? Simply – they build community. People know if you are there or not. People cheer you on – there are people that care about you and want to be your friend. Accountability, motivation and social opportunities abound when exercising with others. So – how are you going to get fit together?
Remember when you were a kid and your mom would wake you up in the morning to go to school? (Me neither … I was ALWAYS up and ready to go – but I am sure that my sister remembers!) She was holding you accountable. If you were anything like my sister, you probably wouldn’t have made it without her! An exercise group or buddy can do the same thing for your exercise routine. I have had countless times over the years when I would have preferred to stay in bed, but I knew my exercise buddy or those in my group were counting on me to show up. And – they would certainly give me a hard time if I didn’t show up. So – the fear of teasing got me out of bed? Sometimes …. And I reaped the benefit of getting fit together!
Plus, there is always the friendly instructor or group leader that is keeping track! I know many leaders who look to see who is there and who isn’t – and when you have been missing for a few days or weeks they send out a friendly reminder! It really does pay to be part of the group and get fit together!
Not only are you being held accountable to get out of bed and exercise – there is the motivation to improve your current fitness level. If you are exercising with people who are doing the same thing – and you can get a “high five” or a “way to go!” or a “you can do it!” or a “woo hoo!” – studies show that you will work harder. Which – totally reminds me of one of the training groups where I am a participant – we celebrate the wins and share some groans together – which always makes getting fit together seem easier and more enjoyable!
Another piece of motivation is – if you work out with people who are faster, stronger or fitter than you, you are probably going to get in better shape. I remember running with my sister – who has always been stronger than me – and knowing if I could keep up with her once in a while, it would eventually make me faster. And you know what, it worked!
Now – this really is the best reason (in my opinion) to get fit together! Human beings are social creatures. Yes, a few are hermits and recluses, but the majority of us love to be around other people. We love to laugh, joke and have fun. And what better way than to do that while you are getting fit?
Plus – while you are getting fit together you may just make a friend. Many people that I have gotten fit with in the past have become life-long friends. You already have one thing in common – and likely others. I have enjoyed regular happy hours, wine tasting (when I lived in CA), going to a football game and of course the races and events we have done together. Sweating together can be one of the best ways to meet people, develop a common bond and get fit together!
This is especially important in a world where we’ve become so dependent on email and texting. Getting fit together offers human interaction that is slowly disappearing. We can do just about everything today virtually without ever talking to a person. However, with group fitness, you have to get involved. That’s why it’s called group fitness, and that’s why technology will never replace a group enjoyout. Get out of your cubicle, your car or your house and go meet other people that have a common interest just like you.
Move your body, put good things in and ENJOY every day!