They live 1,000 miles apart, but that doesn’t stop Tory Hale in Dallas and Taylor Witty in Greensboro, North Carolina, from keeping each other on track to reach their fitness goals.
Taylor, the national development manager for Gold’s Gym fitness programs, met Tory, Gold’s Gym director of fitness operations, a few years ago while becoming certified to teach GOLD’S FIT®. It didn’t take long for the pair to know that they would be close — in fact, their friendship started with their shared competitive spirit.
“Tory led the certifications and shared his workouts and his numbers,” Witty says. “I looked at those and made my goal to beat him in everything by one rep.”
Having a friend to workout with can give you the push you need and help hold you accountable.
Here’s how Tory and Taylor succeed as workout buddies with the help of technology and a love of competition – and their advice for starting a best friends workout plan of your own.
Share your goals and be consistent with communication
Tell each other what you are working toward so you know how to keep each other motivated.
“Tory and I tend to have very similar goals,” Witty says. “Every once in a while, we text something as simple as, ‘Hey, man, get it together.’ Sometimes the message comes in the middle of a workout. Other times it’s when I’m frustrated about something else. I get that out of the blue, and it’s like somehow he knew. It reminds you that someone else cares that you get better.”
Use technology to stay accountable and on track
If eating better is your goal, send each other photos of your meals. If building muscle in a certain area is your goal, share photos of your progress after doing targeted workouts. (See fitness section for targeted workout posts.)
Create a best friends workout document or social media group and invite your pals to post their hard work for everyone to see.
“Sharing the experience with other people is what creates a bond,” Hale says.
“If you’re surrounding yourself with people who aren’t going to push you, those are probably not the right people,” Witty says.
Train for an event — and make it fun
Last year the best friends participated in two Spartan Races together, which was outside Witty’s comfort zone.
“I’ve never been much of a runner, so for me to sign up was a big deal,” he says. “We started running more so that hopefully we’d finish the race together.”
An event with a firm end goal (finishing a race, beating your previous race time or raising money for a good cause) is a good motivator. Ask your friends who wants to train for it or lose the most weight by the event date.
“Make sure it’s fun, too,” Hale says. “If it gets too serious, it’s hard to keep it up. It’s fun to be competitive and challenge each other to do new things.”
Plan an active vacation and meet the locals
So far this year, Hale and Witty have taken a couple of weekend trips to Breckenridge, Colorado, for snowboarding — another new experience for Witty.
“I liked it enough to buy my own board,” he says. “We’ve even talked about getting season passes for next year.”
Next up on the travel itinerary: Iceland.
“We’re going to be hiking every day and we’ll enjoy it because we trained,” Hale says. “We’ll get to see so much more because of it.”
It’s also an opportunity to meet new people who could potentially give their best friends workout a global reach.
“We’ll find a gym while we’re there,” Hale says. “We’ll meet locals and get their recommendations and probably be welcomed into their fitness community because of it.
“That extends this beyond our friendship to a fitness family across the world.”