Better together – working out with a significant other

In honour of Valentine’s Day, I thought I’d write about the benefits of working out with a significant other. It’s no secret that Kelly and I share a common love of activity. We often participate in the same events, and even if we don’t race them together we train together for many.


After our first triathlon, Calgary 70.3

I absolutely love training with Kelly and wouldn’t want it any other way! Here are my top five reasons why it’s better together.

Quality time
Kelly and I don’t have frequent date nights, or so I thought until I realized every bike ride we go on and run or ski we do together is our version of date night. We may wear spandex instead of stylish clothes and burn calories instead of eat them but the essence of a date is the same: spend time together without interruption and have some fun.

We’ve gone on some amazing ‘dates’, from seeing bears while biking to gorgeous sunrises on the trails to SUPing in Hawaii.


I am so thankful I get to share the experiences with Kelly.

In it together
We battle the bad and praise the positive…together. Have you run in shin deep snow, biked in a thunderstorm, or scaled up a sizeable mountain? I have both alone and with Kelly. Believe me when I tell you it’s a lot better when you’re with someone. Frustration turns to laughing and it just doesn’t seem as tough or intimidating.


A six-hour bike ride, a triple brick, waking up early on vacation to beat the heat. Some people just can’t comprehend why we willingly do this. If your significant other does it, too, then at least someone close to you understands (and will often do it with you)!


When I suffer from injury, I can be extra sensitive (or grumpy depending on who you ask!). Since Kelly’s been there, he understands where I’m coming from and gives me a little leeway.

There’s this one farm dog on my favourite bike route. He despises me, and I swear he knows I’m coming from miles away. He chases me, barking, with his ferocious teeth bared. If Kelly’s with me, he hangs behind to stay between the dog and me.

I can also be a timid trail runner whether it’s in the city (scared of lurkers) or in the mountains (wild animals). When I’m with Kelly, I generally forget about worrying and just enjoy the run!

Lastly, I’m not the best with mechanical issues on my bike. Actually, I downright suck at fixing a flat tire. If I’m alone, chances are it’ll take me up to an hour and sometimes even then I need to call for a ride because I’ve gone through my supply of spare tubes or CO2 cartridges. If I get a flat with Kelly, he can change it in what feels like seconds!

Call it competitive drive, but it keeps me motivated to work out and race with Kelly! Whether it’s running or biking further than planned, going faster, or just being silly and trying to plank for longer, I am motivated to do better and be better.


“I’ll tell you one thing, it’s always better when we’re together.” – jack johnson

With all that being said, many people use running as their ‘me’ time. I think that’s wonderful and sometimes nothing cures a grumpy or introspective mood better than a solo run or ride!

Also, it doesn’t have to be a significant other. It can be better together with friends or training partners, too!

Tell me: do you think it’s better together or better alone?

What are your favourite activities to do with someone and by yourself?

Thanks for reading! I scheduled a few posts to go up while I’m cruising the California coast with my family. I don’t expect to be online much, so I won’t be commenting on blogs or writing trip updates on here. However, I hope to post to my Instagram feed (thechangeofpace) when the mood strikes!

32 responses to “Better together – working out with a significant other

  1. I think working out is even better than “date night” because you’re both doing something you enjoy! Plus, you get the exercise endorphins.

  2. Jan, my wife and I don’t necessarily “enjoy” running yet, but we’re getting there! Training for a half-marathon together has been fun, even when the running itself has not! Check out my blog at

  3. That first picture of you and Kelly is great! Active date nights are also my idea of a great time – working out with a partner is way better!

  4. I loved working out with a significant other, and those workouts were definitely like dates in themselves!! This is why finding someone that shares your passions is so key!! YES to all of this!!

  5. I’m so jeally! Saign will hike with me, walk with me, and 25% of the time he’ll snowboard with me, but when it comes to running (and snowboarding 75% of the time), I’m going solo! I really wish that he would run with me!

  6. Awesome post Abby!! Since the Iron Hippie and I are training for IRONMAN #2 together, I would definitely say together is the way to go!! One additional benefit I find is that when we are in it together, we are keeping the same schedule. Waking up at the same time and going to bed at the same time are important in a relationship. We have a friend that keeps a very different schedule than her significant other. When she is waking up to start her day when her significant other is just going to sleep, so for me keeping the same schedule is also important.

  7. You guys are lucky to be able to do that! My wife wants to get back into running, but it’s been hard with the kiddos. I have a few other friends who are couples who try to run/ride together, but sometimes it becomes a source of contention because inevitably their paces don’t match.
    Love Jack Johnson!

  8. I think I’ve said this before, but you two are my favourite couple! I love that you guys do all of this together and I think it makes your bond so much stronger. Personally, I prefer to train alone.. but I don’t mind the odd run together! I think racing together could be really fun, plus, seeing that person at the finish line, assuming he finishes earlier – which will always be the case for me at least, would be such a great feeling. Nothing better than being proud of each other 🙂

  9. So awesome that y’all workout together and even get in dates through activity!!!
    Chris and I have never worked out together – we tried running together early on but it never worked – he is happy to just put in 3 miles nice and slow (no time) and that isn’t how I like to run. Actually all of our workouts are different because I love to push hard and really test myself and he is OK with taking breaks:) Good thing we have lots of other things that we like to do together.
    I hope you are having a great time in California!

  10. I love that my hubby does triathlons and gets all that goes along with it. We train together about half of the time and it is great to have him as a partner (especially for the bike rides, I had a flat a few days ago while we were riding together!). Have an awesome trip to California!

  11. Our dates rides & runs are few & far between now that we have kiddos, but working out with my husband is my favorite kind of workout. Love it when we can sneak away for a run or hike together. Love this, Abby!

  12. So I am awesome and I just commented about this post on your previous post. Just felt the need to call more attention to myself and point it out here!

  13. The best date nights are activities (swimbikerun, ski, etc.) with the bf! Nick and I are similar in that we train + race together, though he’s much faster than me! Still fun to be out there on the same course 🙂 That said, I do love training solo, too, and often do my long runs and bikes alone… great way to clear my head! Hope you’re having a blast on vacation!

  14. We don’t specifically train together – and he’s totally my race sherpa which I appreciate. However, I do enjoy it when I have a biking companion, especially for long rides. For runs – I actually love running solo.
    But hiking, skiing, kayaking are great activities to share.

  15. This is so great! I would always rather have a “date night” on a bike or trail. Or even just cooking at home with Dan. 🙂
    I also like to train on my own. It is nice to train with Dan and my training partners but I am not racing with them so I need to focus some time on mental toughness!
    Happy Valentines Day! Hope you are having fun and soaking up the California sun!

  16. I love this! “we may wear spandex instead of stylish clothes” —hahah!

  17. I love this! Adam and I have done a few races together and workout programs like P90X. Both of us love having someone there – and honestly you’re so right. It’s a great way to get in quality time. Gotta love multi-tasking 🙂

  18. dad would kill for an exercise date night! we’re all envious of you and kelly! happy valentine’s day and enjoy an active, fun filled day in california! xoxo mom

  19. I am so jealous of your “date nights” with Kelly!! I only get those with my husband on vacation when we walk together. Otherwise, I am on my own when I run. Such a great Valentine’s day post! Hope you are enjoying your trip!

  20. I know that I have mentioned this before but I am super jealous that you guys get to do all of your tri stuff together! I am lucky because my boyfriend is very understanding, but because he’s not a runner, biker, etc. He only gets it so far : ) And often I am the first one to bed early! Although there is a part of running that I love to do on my own, I really wish I had a buddy to run with once a week for the motivation part.

  21. Cheers from another couple who prefer to meet at a trailhead on date night. Our Valentine’s was spent on the trails, sipping gels and a chaser of Nuun! Bravo to you!


    I love this! Thanks, Abby!
    Glenn and I are in this together ~ but allow for alone time. The vast majority of the time we’d prefer togetherness. With two kids at home we also consider our long runs “dates”!

  23. I have to say I am a bit jealous that you have such a wonderful husband to train with! 😉 Unfortunately, my husband isn’t really interested in my athletic pursuits, although I can get him to join me on the occasional long hike. For the most part, I workout alone. The occasional yoga class at a studio helps to keep me from getting too lonely and bored.

  24. This is great, Abby, and what a great idea for a Valentine’s Day post! Bill and I share the same kind of love of working out together that you and Kelly do.

  25. Pingback: Keeping fit on our California adventure | Change of Pace

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