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It's OK to Cheat on Your Walking Partner

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Updated February 09, 2012

Walking friends
Wendy Bumgardner ©

You get off work a half hour early, it's a gorgeous day -- perfect for a walk. But your walking partner isn't available. Should you walk without them? This may seem like a no-brainer -- of course, you should walk. But if you find yourself feeling guilty when you walk without your partner, you need to stop and address those feelings so they don't inhibit your exercise program.

Is it Cheating?

Does your walking partner make you feel guilty when they discover you have walked without them? It may be just a disappointed look, or it may be a confrontation of, "You walked without me?" Did your partnership turn from agreeing to walk together to an expectation that you would only walk when you could walk together?

Alienation of Affection

If you walk with somebody else, you risk discovering that they are more pleasant to walk with than your usual walking partner. Or you may discover that you really enjoy walking solo and don't need your walking partner. If your partner seems jealous of either situation, this may be a fear that is based on the reality of human relationships.

Fitness and Competition

Your walking partner may fear you are walking more than he/she is, and you may get more fit, lose more weight, or perform better at walking events. You may even begin sneaking in more walking and exercise just for that purpose - a friendly competition with your walking partner.

Open Relationships Are Good for Fitness

If you have a new walking partner, set your expectations from the start. Give each other permission to walk and exercise outside of your relationship. Don't limit yourself to only exercising together. If you find another person whose company you enjoy, you may even try a threesome. I have always enjoyed adding a new person to our walking gang - they bring new stories, new exercise tips, and keep things fresh while we walk and talk. Try walking alone and learn the joys of having time alone with your thoughts, your music or podcasts.

Get Out of an Unhealthy Relationship

If you begin to dread walking with your walking partner, don't be afraid to move on to walk solo or find new walking friends. Your health and fitness are of the utmost importance. A walking partner is supposed to motivate you to walk more. If you begin to try to find excuses not to walk with them, it's time to have an honest conversation and agree to walk separately. Cutting Cords to Toxic Relationships

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