Keeping up a regular exercise routine is far from easy, but it’s even more difficult if your spouse or partner is completely opposed to joining you at the gym. It’s not just a matter of wanting full support from them in your endeavor to be healthy—you want them to be healthy, too. Plus, if you have tons of energy to explore life and be adventurous, you probably want to share some of those experiences with your girlfriend or wife.
So what can you do when your partner refuses to exercise? Obviously, you can’t force them to do something they refuse to try, but there are more subtle ways to nudge your partner into making good, healthy choices when it comes to working out. Here are a few methods for getting your partner to be active:
Lead By Example
Going to the gym on your own on a regular basis is the best way to encourage your girlfriend, wife, or partner to do the same. Though your instinct might be to nag your partner to join you, adults do not lot being told what to do, even if it’s by someone they love who has their best interests in mind.
Keep It Light
Anytime you are physically active together, whether that means taking a walk together or going dancing, try not to create any pressure by trying to lock them in to future workout endeavors. Ask your partner if she’d like to join you at the gym, or offer to show her how certain pieces of equipment work, but leave any judgment out of your voice and simply be encouraging and inviting.
Just because you two are competitive when it comes to bored games and hockey bets, doesn’t mean the physical activity you do together should have a competitive edge. If you get your girlfriend to go out for a jog for you, don’t turn the outing into a race; if you convince her to play a game of tennis with you, focus more on having fun as a couple than trying to kick her ass. If you can’t keep your competitive side at bay, bike rides are a great, non-competitive way to have fun and be active together.
If your spouse or partner refuses to workout and thinks you’re being selfish and controlling by demanding they join you, they are never going to change their mind. But if you communicate your concerns about their health or your future together, they may begin to understand your perspective and open up to the idea of exercising with you.
While it might be disappointing if your subtle encouragement and good example don’t immediately spark your partner’s interest in going to the gym, remember that the most important factor is whether or not you two can live a healthy life together. Give it some time and ease her into more fun fitness activities, and maybe one day that sense of competition find her leading you to the gym.