Exercising Together and the Profound Power of Shared Struggle

I get Mark Sisson’s newsletter, “Mark’s Daily Apple.” It’s based on primal living; the concept of eating and moving like our proto-human ancestors.

Two things in this weekend’s edition caught my eye.

  1. Like me, he both flirts with addiction to runner’s high, and likes the pain.
  2. He was stressing the need for couples to exercise together.

I’ve written about point one extensively, including my love of the pain. It is the second one that hit home, because lately wifey and I haven’t been exercising together.

It wasn’t always this way. Around the time she started a regular Bikram Yoga practice (to shed the last of the kid 2 baby weight), I also started a regular Bikram Yoga practice (hockey season was over). We didn’t always go together, but we did so once or twice a week.

The effects of hard, regular exercise together were so profound, that my youngest (although he doesn’t know it) owes his very existence to Bikram Yoga.

It saved our marriage.

We were on the fast track to divorce, fighting about everything, unable to talk about anything without it devolving to a shouting match.

It was hurting us, it was profoundly hurting our first, and it went on for almost two years.

Six months of exercising together healed us enough to actually talk, to get to the hard work of putting our marriage back together.

Things have been a bit strained lately, but I didn’t really get why.

Not exercising together is not the cause, but getting back into will certainly help make things better.

Luckily for us, summer water season is approaching. She can get on her paddleboard, I can get in my kayak, and we can spend time in the great outdoors, exercising together.

With the added bonus of growing closer together again.