If finding a reliable workout mate was as easy a reliable drinking buddy we’d be ripped so here’s how to find the perfect training partner. Evidently science has proven my desperation to find a partner as multiple studies have shown the benefits of one: Having someone to exercise with makes you more likely to hit the gym more frequently.  You’ll push yourself harder than if going solo and it improves mood. Having a workout mate can also boost your performance. An Oxford University study found the group who rowed in unison released more endorphins and rowed harder and faster compared with rowers practicing alone. The extra endorphins gave them a higher pain threshold so it hurt less. If you’re in the market for someone to pound the pavement or bang the plates with here are a few tips on how to go about it.

Find A Workout Partner

Find these qualities, and someone’s lesser faults – like telling dad jokes –  won’t seem like such deal breakers. 

Accountability

No more snoozing when someone’s relying on you, otherwise guilt kicks in. Roll out of bed and take care of business. 

Availability

Same gym, same hours, same geographic location. Long-distance workout buddies work about as well as long-distance relationships. 

Positivity

The words emotional support might sound like something from an old Oprah episode. That said, a study from Aberdeen in the UK found emotional social support from a workout partner increased workout frequency. 

A (slightly) higher skill level

Ideally, your partner should be just a bit better than you even if you’re a beginner. But not so much that there’s a glaring discrepancy. A Kansas State University study found the optimal exercise partner is 40% better than their less partner. This makes you exercise for a longer period of time and at an increased rate.

Platonic only

Rule of thumb: you should not want to have sex with your workout mate. 

Keep A Workout Partner 

Nothing’s more annoying than being all revved up to slam some plates, then waiting for a buddy who moseys in like he’s got all the time in the world

Always show up on time

Accountability is the fuel that keeps your workouts going. 

Skip excess chitchat

A little idle talk is fine in between sets, but you don’t want to be that guy rambling while your partner  is squatting.

Ditto, midsession selfies

Post glamour social media shots on your own time.

Agree on strategy

You need to have compatible routines. If one of you is waiting three minutes between sets and the other 30 seconds, this will last as long as a Newcastle Knights winning streak.

Use pep talks sparingly

You can’t turn every set into the climax of a Rockymovie. Pep talks are like salt: a little bit adds spice, too much ruins the meal.