Valentine’s Day is just around the corner and instead of hitting the gym or Pilates studio alone, why not ask a special someone to join you??
I could have more benefits than you realize!
It’s been shown that physical fitness can benefit not only your own health and well-being, but that your romantic relationship. A growing body of evidence suggests that couples who sweat together really do stay together. In fact, working out together can do a number of things for you like….
- Increase your happiness with your relationship. Lab studies show that after jointly participating in an exciting physical challenge or activity, couples report feeling more satisfied with their relationships and more in love with their partner (Aron, Norman, Aron, & Heyman, 2000). This suggests that sharing a fitness goal (such as training for a 5K or triathlon), taking regular runs together, ballroom dancing, or having a date night at the gym can boost the quality of your romantic relationship.
- Improve the efficiency of your workouts. A long-standing concept in social psychology is that the mere presence of someone else affects your ability to do an activity (Zajonc, 1965). Even if you already feel competent doing a particular exercise, bringing along your romantic partner may be a fantastic way to boost your energy output. Your partner’s presence will improve your speed, without you necessarily being aware of their influence (Bond & Titus, 1983).
- Make your partner fall in love with you. Exercise induces the symptoms of physiological arousal—sweaty hands, a racing pulse, shortness of breath. These symptoms mirror, in many ways, the thrill of romantic attraction. Interestingly, people can easily mistake the two and misattribute physical arousal for romantic attraction (Dutton & Aron, 1974). Use this phenomenon to your advantage by inviting your romantic interest to workout with you. The results? A likely boost to your attractiveness in his or her eyes.
- Help you achieve your fitness goals. When partners care about fitness—their own and their partner’s—it becomes easier to achieve fitness goals. A recent study of heterosexual couples showed that average-weight husbands who care about fitness engage in more physical activity when their wives offer more supportive health-related comments (Skoyen, Blank, Corkery, & Butler, 2013). Sharing in the ups and downs of a daily morning walk, a tough bike ride, or a strenuous Zumba class, can provide the perfect context for such comments.
- Increase your emotional bond. When you work out together, you create a context in which you can coordinate your actions. For example, you might lift weights in rhythm with your partner, match your own walking or running pace with his or hers, or toss medicine balls back and forth. Such behavior creates nonverbal matching, or mimicry, which benefits you both (Stel & Vonk, 2010). Nonverbal mimicry helps people feel emotionally attuned with one another, and those who experience or engage in it tend to report greater feelings of having “bonded” with their partner.
In sum, fitness can be about you, or it can be about you and your significant other, so why not share this aspect of your lives, either regularly or just on occasion, and discover how doing so might give your relationship a new dimension and new life.
- 3 cups blanched almond flour
- ¼ cup coconut flour
- ¾ cup raw cacao powder
- ½ cup raw coconut palm sugar
- 2 teaspoons baking soda
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ½ cup coconut oil, melted
- 1 cup coconut milk, full fat
- 3 large eggs, room temperature
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 2 tablespoons raw honey
MIDDLE LAYER CHOCOLATE GANACHE*:
- 1 can (13.5 ounces) full fat coconut milk
- 2 tablespoons raw honey
- 4 tablespoons raw cacao powder
- ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- 6 tablespoons coconut milk, full fat
- ¾ cup dark chocolate chips
- Preheat oven at 350°F
- Grease the bottom and sides of a 7-inch springform pan with coconut oil and line the bottom with parchment paper
- In a large bowl mix together the almond flour, coconut flour, raw cacao powder, raw coconut palm sugar, baking soda and salt
- In a separate bowl whisk together the coconut oil, coconut milk, eggs, vanilla and honey
- Using a rubber spatula, gently mix dry ingredients into wet ingredients to form a batter. Do not over mix.
- Pour batter into prepared pan and bake until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, approximately 45-50 minutes. If you feel you need to cook it longer, cover cake with aluminum foil to prevent burning the top and lower the heat to 325°F. Cook until toothpick comes out clean.
- Let cake cool completely then cut horizontally in the middle
- Spread the chocolate ganache over the bottom half of the cake and refrigerate for 30 minutes
- Top with other half of cake, then spread the chocolate frosting over the top and sides of the cake
- Sprinkle top with shaved dark chocolate if desired
MIDDLE LAYER CHOCOLATE GANACHE:
- In a medium saucepan, bring the coconut milk and honey to a light boil
- Simmer on low heat for two hours, stirring occasionally. Do not cover the pan. You will know you cooked it long enough when the coconut milk is reduced to half and has a thicker consistency and darker color, similar to sweetened condensed milk.
- Mix in the raw cacao powder and vanilla extract and stir until all is combined and smooth
- Let it cool and refrigerate until cake is ready
- Melt the chocolate chips in a bowl over simmering water (double boiler)
- Mix coconut milk with melted chocolate until all is combined and smooth
- Let cool for 5 minutes before icing the cake
*The middle layer chocolate ganache takes a long time to make. Please plan ahead and have this ready before you bake the cake.
If you make this cake with almond flour by Bob’s Red Mill your cake may turn out oily, dense and it may sink in the middle. Be sure to use finely ground almond flour with the skin removed to get a light and fluffy consistency out of your cake. I suggest blanched almond flour by Honeyville. I am not affiliated with them. Their almond flour just works the best for baking.
We’re still recovering from the holidays so we have moved our Wine Down Pilates night to Feb. 13th. We will be having a fun and festive Valentines Wine Down and Chocolate night.
See you there!
Carol H. 2/12
Ginger L. 2/14
Jonathan S. 2/15
Paula B. 2/17
Sahrina H. 2/20
We wanted to thank you for being such an important part of our success the last year. We truly can’t do any of this without you! Here at Symmetry In Motion we love growing our family. First, we’d like to start by asking you to bring in your favorite co-worker, sister, brother, husband, wife or friend. We are excited to be able to offer you and your guest rewards for doing so!
Refer 1 friend who buys a package
*Get a $15 Visa Gift CArd
Refer 2 friends who buy packages
*Get a $25 visa gift card
Refer 3 friends who buy packages
*get a $100 gift card and private session with Tania
Tania and the Symmetry In Motion Team