I mentioned in the last post about “Shape Up NYC,” the free workout event calendar sponsored by NYC Parks & Recreation, anyone planning on attending… anyone?
Let’s talk today about working out alone vs. working out with a friend. What I come across often in my personal LWFY health-coaching sessions with my clients is that people are very apprehensive to go to the gym alone. It’s no surprise and believe me I have been there. Ten years ago when I started exercising, while weighing in at almost 300 pounds, I felt embarrassed, nervous, and at times overwhelmed. (Insert any other emotion into that list, because I have felt them and dealt with them all.) The short answer to the “Should I work out alone?” question is this: If it gets you to the gym, or out the door to the walking track, or yoga studio… then there you have it, go with a friend.
Contrary to what you may be thinking, exercising can be so much fun! (I talk more about this in my upcoming book: Lose Weight, Find Yourself: Six Steps to Having a Healthy Relationship with Food…Bite by Bite and Pound by Pound.) Working out with a friend allows for some accountability, feedback, and assistance. Equally as important, it can give way to a lot of laughs. I can’t tell you all the times I have gone exercising with a friend, or my sister, and ended up laughing so hard we couldn’t breathe!
For those of you who don’t know, this second chance at life I’ve given myself started at my local YMCA back in 2003. I’m proud to say I’m still friends with some of the people I met way back when. I have met some truly fascinating people over the years through exercise related activities, including my hilarious friend Sheril. We are two “peas in a pod” and I never would have met her had I not gone to that stinkin’ Boot Camp class at the YMCA. You never know when a decision to try one new thing will change the course of your life.
Since living in NYC, I do most of my working out by myself with the exception of meeting my trainer Nicole Chaplin 2x / month, or if I take a group class. Exercising and weight lifting, dieting, weight loss and management, is all so personal and sacred to me. Exercise time is my time. Time to be without my phone, without the emails, without distraction and just be me. It gives me the time to focus on being healthy and linking my mind’s desire to body’s reflection. (I just made up that phrase, but I like it.) If you do exercise with your friend or spouse be sure you stay focused on the task at hand. Some days you go hard, some days you go soft. Maybe buddy up on the light day and make it a solo mission on the harder days. In the end, of course you do what is best for you!
The process is subjective and although I am glad to guide you, at the end of the day it has to work for you and it’s your journey! If you’re interested in being motivated one-on-one, got back to the LWFY homepage and contact me. We’ll set up a personal health-coaching session and talk it out.
Don’t forget to submit your pictures on my site. You can send before and after pics, gym pics, or pics with your workout buddy. You may just inspire someone to get started, and that’s a wonderful thing!
Heading off to get my workout in, it’s leg day. Bye y’all.