Your dog is the key to a healthier lifestyle.
Whether you love to feel the burn or struggle to break out of your couch potato ways, your dog is the workout partner you've always needed. Dogs suffer from obesity just as humans do, and being active is still the best way to combat those extra pounds. Your dog is your snuggle buddy, your weekend adventurer, and your overall best friend, so why not add workout partner to the list?
Here are six of the best reasons why you should lace up your shoes, grab the leash, and head out the door.
1. They're Always Ready to Go
When raising your heart rate and breaking a sweat is your go-to method for stress relief, you know your dog is always ready to go. He doesn't need advanced notice, and he'll never complain about your poor timing. And unlike your human friends, the words,"lets go for a run," get him really excited.
He'll be ecstatic about the chance to get out, burn calories, and spend time with you. His enthusiasm is contagious, and you'll be as hyped as he is.
2. You Know They Won't Bail
Your human gym buddies are notorious for sleeping in or deciding they have something better to do. It's tempting to throw in the towel when your partner bails, but you don't have to worry about that with your dog.
You're their number one priority, and they'd gladly cancel their plans of napping and stalking the mailman to join you in a workout.
3. They Push You to do Better
You're a mile from home, soaked in sweat, and all you want to do is quit. When you're by yourself, there's nothing but self determination to keep you from slowing your pace. And in most cases, that's not enough.
But when your dog is bounding in front of you with nothing on his mind but putting one paw in front of the other, you don't give up. Your workout isn't only yours, it's his too. As long he's still going, so are you.
4. You Can Work out How You Want To
Cardio isn't for everyone, so why not do something you actually enjoy? You can kayak, paddle board, and surf, or if water isn't your thing, there's always biking and yoga. If your pup loves to play tug, pulling him across the yard is a great core workout. Even a rousing game of fetch is enough to get you moving.
You can also join a dog-friendly gym for classes designed specifically for dogs and their owners. When your partner has four legs and a wagging tail, you're not working out, you're having fun with your dog.
5. You Make Progress Together
Your lifestyle choices affect your dog, and their fitness level most likely mirrors your own. If you're a couch potato, so are they. If you're fit and active, they're more likely to lead a healthy life. The best workout partners are the ones who are on the same level as you.
They push you to do your best, and you don't get discouraged when their mile time is faster than yours. You push each other to see results and celebrate together when you meet your goals. If you're consistent with your workouts, you and your pup will grow and get better together.
6. It's Easy to Burn a Lot of Calories
You don't need to spend money on a gym membership or learn complicated moves to burn calories. All you really need to do is hang out with your dog.
Different dog breeds have different fitness levels, and according to this interactive graph from Lovejoys, running nine miles with a Rhodesian Ridgeback could help you burn 1,200 calories. If you're not up to that kind of endurance, two miles with a Whippet will set you back 350 calories.
Staying healthy and getting fit may not be your favorite thing to do, but with your dog by your side, it doesn't feel like work. Your heart is pounding and your skin is slick with sweat, but all you're really doing is spending quality time with your best friend.
Is your dog your workout partner? Let us know in the comments.
WATCH NOW: Zuke's Power Bones Are for Active Dogs