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  • Courtesy of Peter Cooper Mike Aidala and Chelsey Khorus work on a skill called a Figa in New York’s Washington Square Park. Whatever the two are doing, a workout could sprout up. “An afternoon in the city turns into a game of ‘Can you handstand here?’ Living this way together keeps the moment alive with possibilities, not to mention a great workout,” Khorus says.

  • Courtesy of Jamie Hess Jamie Hess and George Hess work out together in New York City. Fitness has always been important to the couple, with George even proposing to Jamie while on a treadmill. The married couple ran in the New York City Marathon last year.

Monday, August 07, 2017 1:00 am

Fitness couples find best trainer is each other

KELLI KENNEDY | Associated Press

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. – It's hot and sticky outside, all your friends are at the beach or at brunch. It's tempting to blow off a workout, but getting sweaty with your significant other definitely ups the fun factor and makes it easier to stick to.

We asked some of our favorite swolemates (that's internet speak for soul mates who like to get swole, as in muscular or swollen, together) about the creative ways they sneak in a workout and how it has improved their relationships.

Make it fun

Giuliana and Bill Rancic. The Rancics started working out together 11 years ago. Their Instagram feed is full of cute photos of them water skiing, boating, golfing and carb loading at their restaurants RPM Italian in Chicago and Washington, D.C.

Giuliana: “Bill and I recently started playing pickleball regularly and (we) love it. It's like tennis meets pingpong and is a great workout and can get very competitive as well. We play it on outdoor courts, which is perfect for us since we both love being out in the sun. We also love to hike together or go to the gym together when the weather isn't great outside. He's the best workout partner I could ask for.”

Bill: “Working out as a couple is another way to be together while doing something that is good for you. Even if your workweek is too busy, plan to set aside an hour each weekend to either go to the gym, play a sport or take a hike. At the very least, a walk around the neighborhood is a great way to get some exercise and reconnect.”

Schedule a workout date

Celeb trainer Anna Kaiser and husband, Dr. Carlos Wesley. She's a fitness trainer to stars like Ryan Seacrest, Kelly Ripa and Shakira. Kaiser and her husband, Dr. Carlos Wesley, who are new parents, love to stay active, especially when they travel. They've been spelunking in Riviera Maya, paired up for a relay mini-triathlon in Montauk, New York, and created their own running tour of Paris and London.

Carlos: “Last Sunday, my mom came over to watch the baby and we headed into Central Park together for 45 minutes. We created an interval workout that alternated between short runs and a series of four exercises. (Run for seven minutes, then pushups, burpees, side planks, teasers, each exercise performed for one minute, then run for six minutes and perform each exercise for 45 seconds and so on.) I monitored the time and Anna led the workout sections.”

Anna: “We are new parents and we don't have much time outside of work and baby duties. So it can get frustrating not to get time to focus on ourselves, or one another. Working out not only gets us out of the house, but it helps us get physical together, push ourselves harder than we would if we were solo, and achieve a short-term goal that we have to work toward together. Plus, I think it's sexy to see him work out and push himself.”

Find new friends

George and Jamie Hess. Fitness has always been the foundation of the Hess' relationship. The couple says working out has helped them both lose weight and discover new things. They ran their first 5K three years ago and fell in love. Last year, they ran the NYC Marathon together.

George: “Our date nights are now date days. While most people hire a baby sitter in the evenings, we hire ours on weekend mornings so we can head outdoors and share some fitness time and then grab a quick healthy bite on the way home. It's so much more gratifying for us than having a “date night” dinner where we eat indulgent food and then regret it when our pants don't fit the next morning.”

Jamie: “I would recommend finding something you love to do together, like a boot camp or spin class, and then sign up for that a few days a week. Not only does the routine help with consistency, but another cool byproduct is making friends as a couple. Now that we have to juggle child care (meaning they have to trade off mornings at the gym), we set aside time on Sunday nights to go over our schedule for the week to make sure we both get in all the workouts we need. The most important thing is scheduling the workouts and then making them non-negotiable.”

Trust and intimacy

Mike Aidala and Chelsey Korus. Don't be intimidated by their impressive moves like one-armed handstands. These stunt masters met on the set of a photo shoot in New York's Central Park and say they are each other's toughest trainers and biggest cheerleaders.

Chelsey: “Mike and I love to keep it playful and completely immerse ourselves in the environments we are in. If we happen to be strolling through the woods, we turn it into a free-running obstacle course. A quick dip in the reservoir turns into a long distance swim to the other side. An afternoon in the city turns into a game of 'Can you handstand here?' Living this way together keeps the moment alive with possibilities, not to mention a great workout.”

Mike: “When we work out together, especially doing high-risk acrobatic trust moves, it requires us to lean on each other's strength, awareness and flexibility which naturally fosters a closer relationship. She's my teammate. ... The biggest benefits of training with your partner are the mental and emotional gains not the physical ones.”