When regular workouts have you feeling strong, energetic and happy, it's natural to want to share those benefits with your spouse. Getting your wife to work out when she is resistant can be a challenge. Although you want what's best for her, you don't want to rock the boat or cause strife in your marriage by becoming a nag or a critic. Take a positive approach by gently encouraging your wife to begin her own exercise regimen.
Show, don't tell. Instead of harassing your wife, just do it. Immerse yourself in your own routine and let your wife reap the benefits: a happy, toned, energetic, loving husband. Ask her to join you often. Don't argue if she refuses, simply ask again in a day or two. When she sees how good working out is for you, she'll likely want to jump on board.
Help with the logistics. Find out why your wife doesn't want to work out. Maybe she feels like she doesn't have the time, or she doesn't know how to juggle taking care of young kids and squeezing in workouts. Help your wife by taking the kids every day at the same time or help her organize her schedule so that she can fit in regular exercise. Encourage her to make time for herself for her personal health and well-being.
Offer to be her workout partner. Accompany your wife to the gym or do an exercise DVD together at home. Commend her for her strength or impressive stamina. View your exercise time as a time when you can laugh, talk and bond with each other in a different way than usual.
Use positive reinforcement. Motivate your wife by praising her for her small efforts in the beginning. Reaffirm her with compliments and affection daily, letting her know that you love her as she is. Accentuate the positive by pointing out how proud you are of her for going to the gym with you or for trying to become more healthy by working out.
Make it fun. Find out what your wife likes to do and do it with her. Go biking or hiking together, take walks, or play a sport like tennis or volleyball. When your wife sees that working out can be fun and invigorating, she'll likely want to keep doing it.