What To Do When Your Workout Buddy Constantly Flakes

It's hard to stay consistent with your exercise routine without motivation, and without consistency, you can't reach your fitness goals. That means you need both if you want to be successful in this department. 

For some people, working out is a solitary exercise. They prefer to use the time at the gym or an hour at Zumba class as a time to reconnect with themselves. For others, having a workout buddy is a significant part of exercising. The idea is that one person lifts the other up when they're not feeling too keen to hit the gym. If you've ever had a workout buddy, you probably already know why working out with someone else is beneficial. Not wanting to let your partner down can be one major motivational factor that actually gets you to keep to scheduled workout times every week. As fitness expert and personal trainer Steve Stonehouse shared with Men's Journal, "No one wants to be Debbie Downer by bailing and letting down a friend." 

Even so, workout partners can be too much like real-life friends — they can constantly flake out on exercise plans, leaving you feeling uninspired to keep up with your own fitness goals, not to mention frustrated with a buddy who was supposed to not let you down. However, there are some ways you can deal with an inconsistent workout partner.

Be honest about how you feel and come up with some ground rules

The first part of any fitness journey is to assess your own motivation. Do you truly want to enroll in those Pilates classes? Are you serious about being consistent? How important is a gym buddy in all of this? Would you continue to go if they flake on plans? Make sure that an inconsistent workout buddy won't just become one more reason why you don't go on that walk this week.

If you're committed to your fitness goals, finding a like-minded workout pal may not be that hard. But if the person you're exercising with is constantly late or canceling workout plans, it's time for you to have an honest chat with them. Ask them why they want to work out in the first place and share how demotivated you feel whenever they flake. If they're open to being more consistent, come up with some ground rules. If either of you cancels plans, there should be some repercussions, like an additional lap the next time you're at the track, per personal trainer Brett Hoebel for Women's Health. 

Enlisting the services of a personal trainer for both of you is another great tip. Hopefully, the additional money being spent on the service will be a motivating factor for your buddy. Alternately, take turns and be responsible for the workout schedule each week. If you're biking buddies, let your partner pick the route every other week. 

How to find the best workout buddy

Most fitness instructors would tell you that finding a workout pal is a little like finding a soul mate — your values and goals have to align for the partnership to work. Even if you're simply looking for someone with whom you can try the best online workouts to help you stick with your New Year's resolution, it's important to find a like-minded individual. You're looking for someone who is as determined, committed, and consistent as you are. It will also help if your fitness goals are the same — you don't want to be training 10-hour weeks of hardcore weightlifting sessions at the gym if all you want to do is some cardio for weight loss. 

Having someone with a positive mindset who inspires you to bring your best to the table is an added advantage. A competitive edge that can challenge you is beneficial too. Stonehouse shared with Men's Journal, "Whenever you're working out with someone else, the intensity is always going to be greater than when you're alone."

Sometimes, if the person you chose to join you on your fitness journey with constantly flakes and doesn't respond to honest conversation, it might even be time to end the partnership and go your separate ways. Try reaching out to new people such as friends or family members to see if someone else would be better suited for you. Getting on apps like Squaddy or Gym Buddy or even joining a fitness group are other alternatives.