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Chapter 2: Defining Your Expectations

Couples often find it difficult to express their expectation. Over time resenting their partner for not living up to their unexpressed thoughts.

The first hurdle of couple fitness happens long before deciding what activity you will do together. After two failed attempts to find the time, most couples hit the eject button. Defining your expectations is key to finding the time to connect through physical fitness. The worst way to approach working out together is taking on the idea of "Crossing a bridge when you get there." Three main areas when discussing expectations are vision, fitness level, and Scheduling. Addressing each of these points will allow a smoother transition into a couple's activity of choice. In addition, clear expectations cut down on the risk of resentment, arguments, and failure.


Define how you envision the look and feel of workouts. For example, one partner may lean towards a focused approach. While the other wants a more lighthearted environment. Being energetically on one accord takes the pressure off one or both people having to tone down or tone up their emotional scale without warning. Be very clear on both parties' intentions and what each wants to gain. For example, is a deeper connection, or is physical health the priority?

Fitness Level

Couples often find success in doing an activity neither is proficient in, giving them the ability to grow together in an athletic pursuit. If agreeing to engage in an activity where one partner is more experienced, the inexperienced person sets the tone for their level of intensity. The quickest way to sabotage a workout session is to disregard your partner's fitness level and comfort. Let them lift, run, climb, bike, etc., at their own pace. Improvement happens when the activity is enjoyable and over time.

Pencil "Us" In

Be honest and realistic about the days and times you can commit to each other. It is easy to get caught up in the excitement of spending time and getting healthier together. Start slow and pick one day a week that is the most doable. Include a backup day in case a cancellation does occur. Think outside the weekends. Thirty minutes on a Tuesday may be all you have. Take it. Work with what you have until schedules allow you more time. Set your couple workout in stone on a calendar with a twenty-four-hour reminder. This time should be treated as any other priority in your life. Taking the guesswork out of trying to find time during the week to dedicate to quality time adds excitement and anticipation. It eases the anxiety and frustration of trying to move mountains to create time.

Defining expectations creates a foundation for couples to enjoy their time together. In addition, understanding the vision, fitness levels, and schedule increases the chance of successfully making couple fitness a permanent fixture in a relationship.

Be well; you are worthy.

Dominique is a wife, mother, blogger and avid long distance runner. Her style of blogging centers around marriage, family, fitness and personal growth. Dominique’s insightful and practical approach to advice gives everyday couples helpful tools to incorporate into having healthy relationships.

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