Ever wondered why there are so many couples at your CrossFit gym? This is why…along with 10 reasons how it will have a positive impact on your relationship (and friendships).
CrossFit is well known for serving couples well for a variety of reasons. These range from sociological, chemical and physical factors at play. A PEW Research study shows that CrossFit is more likely to underpin a relationship by positive reinforcement by way of mutual common interest and hobby. Notably, then, CrossFit is found to be healthy for the body and mind of both spouses, so an extension of that is oftentimes a healthy relationship, which is a welcome by-product.
1. It’s Common Hobby
It is common to find in any CrossFit gym that one member will come along, only to bring their spouse later on.
Often you’ll see many couples training in the same box looking lovingly across the room at each other as they wipe the sweat from their brows, high-fiving one another post-workout.
As the adage “goes couples that train together stay together”.
But the science behind this suggests that couples that can find a hobby they can both do on the regular helps to solidify a relationship.
This makes sense for a number of reasons:
- It naturally fosters more quality time together
- You build bonds and converse over something you both find engaging
- You can enjoy watching it together
- You speak the same CrossFit ‘language’
- With both of you going, the other is not embittered with the other “at the gym all the time” (‘CrossFit Widow’)
- They get ‘it’
2. You Share A Common Friendship Circle
It’s been interesting watching the social dynamics play out in 2 affiliates that I co-own.
Over 12 years of being in the affiliate(s), I’ve seen the natural churn of many hundreds of members. People come and go as the transience of life takes its course, and with that so do relationships.
We’ve seen many weddings between people from within our gyms. Often couples will meet their spouse at CrossFit. I for one, am one of those people! Furthermore, I’ve actually been the best man for 2 other separate couples who met at the gyms.
What comes with all this coupling and befriending is a huge strength of community. This post explains all of that.
This solid underpinning, typical of all CrossFit gyms, is a solid basis for huge friendship circles. These circles encompass people of all ages, races, colours, creeds and worldviews.
It can be a melting pot of characters, but it makes your 1-hour workout session more enjoyable as you chat to Andy the airline pilot; Dr Nicky the GP; or Sam head of primary school maths.
All those CrossFit friends you know and love are also known and loved by your spouse.
3. Releasing Endorphins Together – Positive Vibes
Scientific American details the importance or positive vibes in this article.
The releasing of those all-important endorphins whilst carrying out an enjoyable hobby AND enjoying some quality time. Triple win.
“One of the benefits of revelling in the good times is a boost in the positive emotions of both members of a couple“Scientific American
In her book, Positivity (Crown, 2009), Fredrickson lists the 10 most frequent positive emotions: joy, gratitude, serenity, interest, hope, pride, amusement, inspiration, awe and love. You can find all of these in your shared hobby.
Positive affirmation within your relationships is only a good thing. Something we could probably all have more of, if we’re honest.
Only 2 weeks ago my wife fist-bumped me as we passed one another on a 400m run. Where else would you do something so silly yet meaningful, whilst looking after yourself?
4. Childcare or Child Swapping
Of course, there are practical aspects that you see in any CrossFit gym.
Chiefly, the child swap or kids corner! Find out all about CrossFit Kids in our article here – when they should start, at what age etc.
CrossFit gyms are safe places (off the main floor) and perfect for your kids to sit and chill with a book, iPad or even their homework.
So often we see our member’s kids sitting there quite happily for 1 hour waiting for Mum and/or Dad to finish grunting their way through a partner WOD.
If both parents train and thus ‘get it’, there are no qualms with the old gym swaparoo, as one parent takes the kids to a swimming lesson after their WOD.
5. Family Affair – Bring Your Kids
Kids seeing their parent’s working out naturally has an impression. They want a piece of the action. And behold, CrossFit Kids is a thing.
Spreading the love
In a similar way that working out with your spouse has positive side effects, the same can be said with your kids. Finding common ground, enjoying some bonding, even time in the car there and back – all of this is good, so long as it’s enjoyed.
Often it is enjoyed, however.
By fostering a healthy son/daughter relationship, you’re helping their character growth. Not to mention mental health maintenance and physiological improvements by way of exercise.
Kicking the couch for kettlebells
Instead of them being on the couch at home eating Pringles and watching The Simpsons, they are out and about with Mum or Dad.
And importantly, interacting with other kids and adults in a relaxed atmosphere. They will mature much better in that sort of environment.
So much win.
6. Quality Time
Touched on earlier, time is a commodity that none of us can buy more of. So we’d do well to optimise what time we do have.
One couple that were with us a long while moved quite a lot further away. Yet they still continued to come, even though the journey was 45 mins each way.
When I asked them why, it wasn’t just the love of our community, but also because they got to hang out on the car journey together.
That really resonated with me, and never thought about that side. But it was an important factor in their choice. Ultimately the journey (and fuel cost) became too much to burden, but fair play to them. And what a lovely sentiment.
By utilising our time to look after our mind, body and relationships, what’s not to like? This can go for any sporting hobby, be that swimming, yoga or squash.
7. Box (CrossFit Gym) Touring
A favourite thing of ours – Box Touring.
As sad as this is, we’ve visited over 70+ CrossFit Gyms in the UK, France, Sweden, Italy, Spain, Portugal, USA, Canada, Thailand, Vietnam, plus numerous in South Africa and other European places.
You get to meet like-minded people, work off the beers and burritos whilst on holiday, and do something fun one or two of the days.
From a business perspective, it’s helped me no-end by shaping how to do certain things in our affiliates. Each one has its own flavour, so that’s influenced and shaped.
I like collecting T-shirts too.
8. Earn Your Pizza Together
It’s kind of nice ordering a naughty Deliveroo on a Friday evening with your partner, knowing you’re both going to train on the Saturday in a partner WOD. No guilt here.
It’s a little treat as a couple, but safe in the knowledge you’ve earned it. There is nothing wrong with enjoying your life a little bit, remember.
9. Providing Confidence
As mentioned, all walks of life are in CrossFit Gyms. By taking your spouse who’s more on the introverted side, he or she is highly likely to make friends.
Due to CrossFit Gyms being social in such an organic manner, chats flow as the class flows.
They are generally positive places to be, full of congratulations, bro-hugs and mixed-gender camaraderie.
Because of all of this good stuff, it helps those who need a little confidence helping hand on their way, and open up to the world. Even better is their spouse is only a stone’s throw away, should they feel a little uncomfortable.
10. Enjoy Watching Team / Individual Sports
Rather than getting riled up with your missus watching Man United, or your hubby watching Love Island (hang on, isn’t it the other way around…?!), you can actually sit down and share a moment for a sport you both love.
You can relish in the chalky callous ridden hands of Games athletes, or insane Snatch by Tia Claire-Toomey over some paleo ice cream.
Summary of CrossFit and Couples
This list could go on and on, but I don’t wish to sound like an advocate for CrossFit and couplings!
Of course, it is not always sunshine and rainbows.
So if you are eyeing up your new potential wife across the rowers, make sure you’re thick-skinned and willing to mess on your own doorstep, as it can go wrong.
Not every CrossFit fling ends in wedding bells and sea shells.