T Nation

Solitude makes the arms grow larger!

Hey t-gang, quick question. This last week my training partner has been out of town and I have been left to my own devices at the gym. Consequently I have noticed my intensity skyrocket because I don’t have the distraction of conversation; It’s like I am in a zone. Is training solo a better way to get the efficiency you really need in the gym?

It is truly an individual thing. Some people I know train better with a partner, it spurrs competition. Some people like to “zone” out and do it themselves. I prefer the alone thing but I have to ask for help from time to time when I go really heavy. This is a bummer as I workout very early some days and the only people there are 120 pound guys and 200 pound women. Oh well, wish I had a robotic partner that could spot me and never talk to me. Dream…

Things can distract you in the gym. That’s why I train alone at home (in addition to the convenience factor). So you’ve found something that is hampering your progress (by having it eliminated for a time). Lesson learned?

After a while it doesn’t. I’ve been training solo the past three years and it gets hella lonely. There’s no one to share your pain with you especially when doing one of those Ian King routines.

I tried training at my university’s gym and I hated it. There were just too many people around and it was too big & open (it’s the biggest fitness centre in western Canada). I think training aat home alone is way better.

I miss working out with a partner. We usually kept the chit-chat to a minimum and paid attention to lifting…mostly to get in and out as quickly as possible. Now I work solo and I’ve noticed I’m not progressing as steadily as I used to because I’m more tentative on heavier lifts and don’t want to ‘try one more’ because of lack of spotting. (maybe that sounds ‘wimpy’ but I lost my balance squatting once, and it wasn’t a pretty sight…) You can be efficient, just tell him you’d rather save the conversation for later.

I NEVER train with a partner. Never could. Too much distraction and wasted energy helping them. I want to train when I want, how I want, and someone else can only complicate things. If I need a spot, which is only once in a blue moon, I get one from one of the serious lifters at my gym. Then it’s back to flying solo.

God, I hate working out by myself, not sure why, just do though. But it sounds like your partner may be the problem, I usually work out with my one roommate and we just get a combined focus going and kick the hell out that place, but then sometimes I go with my other roommate and he can’t shut up, not even in his sleep, and I just gotta keep telling him “Barber Shop” implying too much chit-chat, then I have to spell it out usually and then just skip his set all together as he talks to himself in the mirror, it definitely isn’t as productive an environment.

I like to mix it up. Sometimes lift with, sometimes without a partner. Sometimes I like to lift all alone, sometimes at the gym without a partner. Occationally I like to train at home, and more often than not, I go to my college’s gym and workout after hours, by myself with loud music. The people I lift with know me well enough to know NOT to make conversation while we’re training, unless its about training. This is the kind of life I lead, boys (and chicks).

For the most part I always train alone; most of my friends either don’t train or have a different schedule. The only time I train with someone is when I go home and train with a buddy of mine, and those are always intense workouts. Its probally somewhat of a competitive male thing and the fact that we both do the same style of workout.

I perfer to train with my workout partner. The problem I have is my frelled up schedule. I work the swing (and hating it), so that means afternoon workouts for me. The biggest problem I have is no spotter, but there are a couple of serious people around for me to ask. Also, I am by nature very competitive and I will push myself to do heavier weight and more reps when the bo’ is training with me. We definitely do the trash talk. It gets me pumped!


a good partner is always better than none, if you see yourself training better without your partner than get someone else or train by yourself, I ALWAYS do better in a gym than at home (maybe I’m week and I need to see other people w.o. to go all out, I don’t know)but if your partner is holding you back (and it DOES happen) train by yourself or find someone new