With A Little Help From My Friends

“If your friends won’t workout with you, then you can’t be friends with them anymore.”

Thanks to a certain popular workout video persona, the CWS staff has been throwing this phrase around a lot lately. For about a month the CWS staff has been working out together six days a week, and while no friendships have actually been broken (despite playful threats), I think we’ve been successful thus far because of two concepts we hear about all of the time but few of us actually subscribe to:  social support and scheduling.

Let’s backtrack for a moment and start at the beginning. The workout group stemmed from several office conversations that went along the lines of;

Person 1: I wish I would work out.

Person 2: Oh me too.

Person 1: It’s just I don’t have the time…

Person 2: Or energy.

Person 1: Or motivation.

It wasn’t that none of us valued exercise, we all recognized the important role that exercise plays from sleep to stress to happiness. It’s just we had all sorts of reasons and excuses for NOT doing it. That’s where social support and scheduling came in—it got rid of all of those excuses.

So, this past winter I asked my mom to buy me a DVD workout series for Christmas and convinced fellow CWSers and HealthyHeels bloggers, Sweller, Khadija, and Mando, to join me for the fun.  Almost immediately after the semester started, Molly and Natalie decided to join us.  There is something to be said for working out in a group that is just infinitely more fun and just plain easier than working out alone. The energy of all 5 of us there can surmount even the most energy-drained days. In addition, the hilarious commentary and the fun we have making up nicknames for the badasses in the videos really help me get through 45 minutes of punches, kicks, fire drills, and plyometrics.  Even more than reaping the benefits of having their social support, I feel obligated to show up every day because of the social support that I promised to THEM. This, of course in turn, ends up benefiting me again in the end.

Although sometimes we might not be able to make it because of class or another school obligation, we’re not allowed to use silly excuses (for example: “I have to watch the Kardashians”) to ditch our workouts because the other members of the group will never let us hear the end of it.  By having our workouts set in our schedule, it reminds us that the obligation we have to our health is non-negotiable.

Who are your favorite workout buddies?


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