Exercise tips for couples

I once had a girlfriend that asked me if I would train her if she signed up at my gym. Since she hadn?t exercised in years, I was generally excited that she was taking an interest in her health again and that she had asked me for help.

After two or three training sessions and one massive fight later, we never worked out again. That was also the last time I figure to help a lady friend out at the gym, but if you?re look for better luck than I had, Men?s Fitness.com offers these exercise tips for couples that want to work out together.

1.) Forget your own training.
“If you’re trying to show off by demonstrating how much you can lift, you’re going to have problems,” says Rachel Cosgrove, a strength and conditioning coach and co-owner of Results Fitness in Santa Clarita, Calif. “She wants you to pay attention to her.” This means concentrating on moves that she can do and enjoy (unless you want a dumbbell dropped on your foot).

2.) Say the right things.
Feed her compliments?and try to ensure that she processes them as such. “Don’t say, ‘Wow, your arms are getting so big,’ or, ‘You’re looking really buff!'” says Cosgrove. “If a woman hears that, she might never come back with you to the gym.” Instead, reinforce her work by telling her that her arms are really “toned,” or that her legs are “defined.”

3.) Know what she wants.
Her goals are to burn calories and fat, and get more “shapely.” So take it easy on the isolation exercises, use lighter weights and higher reps, and keep her moving. “Women are multitaskers,” says Cosgrove. “They want combination exercises, compound movements, and circuit sets.” In terms of body parts, she’s concerned with her legs, glutes, and?most of all?abs. “As much as guys love the bench press, that’s how much women love ab work,” says Joe Stankowski, a trainer of pageant contestants in Wilmington, Del. So grab a Swiss ball and crunch!

4.) Disguise the workout.
Women often fear weights, so hide weight training in moves like medicine-ball squats and med-ball overhead presses. You can also use those colored, plastic kettlebells for figure eights and swings. And here are always cable moves like wood chops. She will find these exercises more fun and less intimidating, and she won’t feel like she’s turning into the Incredible Hulkette.

To read the rest of MF.com?s tips, click here.

  

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