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Q: I’d like to start swimming for exercise, but I usually only swim for fun—not to work out. Where do I start?
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Get Fit Together!Can you imagine how easy it would be to get a workout in if your partner would partake in it with you? Here are some tips to get the two of you on the same program…


Photograph of a couple hiking in the mountains.1. Choose an exercise/sport you both enjoy, as you’ll be more likely to stick with it.

2. Start very slowly. If you were pretty much sedentary before now, begin with short stints (about 10 minutes) of walking and stretching. Remember, it took you a long time to get out of shape, and you’re not going to turn things around overnight. Be patient.

3. Schedule your workouts in your day planners: what you’re going to do and when. That way, if you don’t follow through, it’s like you’re breaking plans.

4. Try competing against each other. But if you don’t have the competitive spirit, spot one another while doing resistance training or couples’ yoga.

5. Hire a personal trainer to show you and your partner how to get a really effective one-hour workout.

6. Build a home gym!

7. Keep in mind that fitness doesn’t start or end in the gym. Diet is also a major factor in maintaining a healthy weight and achieving desired strength. So grocery shop and eat healthy meals together!

Tonya Rouse Hillebrand is a certified fitness and nutrition expert, and a former national triathlete and duathlon team member.