How Social Support Helps Your Workout Routine

Sticking to a workout plan is not always as easy as it seems. Life happens and stress can come at any moment. APA’s 2022 Stress in America survey shows, “more than a quarter (27%) of Americans are so stressed they can’t function through day-to-day activities.” As the world is still trying to heal after the pandemic, everyone needs to work together to improve physical and emotional health. Social support influences change and positive behavior, including increased motivation and self-esteem (Green). Once you find a good social support team, you could receive help with sharing nutrition tips, plans for reducing stress, & your favorite workouts.

Creating a strong network of social support can be difficult . The first, and most important, is being clear with what you’re looking for in a group. When you’re honest, you create a comforting environment that then attracts the right people. For example, if you like the idea of walking in the morning before clocking in, you could ask questions and build relationships with people who need a morning accountability partner.

Secondly, take advantage of the technology around you (American Psychological Association). Look online for meet-up platforms or groups in your community that align with your goals... For example, if you are a person who loves to exercise but wants a challenge to hike on Sundays, following a group you trust could tick off your goal of miles hiked.

Lastly, if you are a person who struggles with vocalizing your thoughts and needs, reach out to someone you trust and ask for help. It is okay to start small! There is no one-size-fits-all for social support. For example, asking a colleague if you could join them on a group jog could be the first step to finding someone who might have the same goals as you do. Go in with confidence and try your best to not get discouraged.

Exercise is meant to be fun! Having the right people around you makes the experience more exciting for you to enjoy. From cheering on your friends, to letting them cheer for you when you need it, adding social support into your workout routine is a win-win!