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Ask Dr. Nandi: Getting fit with friends may boost life quality

Posted at 5:14 PM, Nov 03, 2017

We’re social creatures, so it’s no surprise that friendships can enhance our lives. But now, a new study finds exercising with friends can also improve the quality of your life. 

Almost 70 medical students at the University of New England were split into groups and tracked for 12 weeks. 

When compared with those who exercised by themselves, researchers found students in workout groups had stress levels reduced by 26 percent. 

There was also a 26 percent improvement in emotional well-being and a 24 percent improvement in physical well-being.

So when you exercise with others, the encouragement and support shared pays off tremendously.  And the chemicals released in the brain during physical activity also helps bond you to those you’re with.   

So, grab a friend and get started today.  Here are my prescriptions:

Partha’s RX

1. Talk with your friends to find common interests. You can sign up for gym classes or meet somewhere to bike, walk, or swim together.   

2. You don’t need to commit to anything long-term. But do create attainable short-term goals to fuel your progress.

3. With our busy lives, it’s important to schedule time on the calendar. It keeps you accountable and less likely to cancel when a friend is counting on you.    

4. Always encourage and share progress with your workout buddies. The emotional boost will inspire everyone to keep going. 

Working out with friends is very motivational and can make physical fitness not only more enjoyable, but the time will fly by much quicker. 

So don’t underestimate the power of friendships, they’ll boost the amount of exercise you’ll get on top of the overall physical and mental health benefits you’ll gain.