Health is important, and exercise plays a big factor towards health. It doesn’t have to be expensive though. I’ve never paid for a gym membership, and I probably never will.
My goal isn’t to lose weight. In fact, I might actually gain weight (muscle). Yes, I want to lose the fat that I’ve gained over the last decade or so. Most importantly though, I want to get back the muscle (and definition) that I’ve lost. It would be nice to actually be stronger than in the past when I didn’t need to make an effort to maintain my muscle tone. Since college, I’ve gained fat but not weight.
I actually feel better, both physically and mentally, when I’m on a good fitness routine. That’s important to me. Looks aren’t important, but health is.
Gyms are so expensive. Not only do you spend money on membership dues, but you also spend money on gas to drive there and back. Plus, you spend time driving there and back. I keep seeing new, specialized gyms opening, and I just don’t understand.
I go on and off exercise routines on a regular basis. For the last year, I’ve been trying really hard to stay on one. Over the years, I’ve bought a few items to help such as DVDs, a book, weights, etc. I was given a few small pieces of equipment too such as a pull-up bar, an ab wheel, and a bicycle (I got as a child). All the money I’ve spent is probably less than a gym’s 1-year membership fee, and the stuff is mine forever. In fact, my favorite DVD right now was only one dollar! There are plenty of free routines available online too.
I do exercises that use my own body weight. Some of my strength training also involves little 5-pound hand weights.
I’ve almost always done little things on a regular basis such as:
- Taking stairs instead of elevators and escalators
- Parking far away (less risk of car dings too!)
- Moving to music that I love, even if I’m sitting (I frequently get up and dance though)
- Fidgeting – this is natural for me, but I’m always moving something when sitting
- Riding my bicycle to the grocery store (less money on gas too!)
- Treating outdoor shopping centers like malls – park once and walk from store to store (less gas too!) (I won’t walk across a major road though since my city is not pedestrian-friendly)
- Taking walks with friends when we want to spend some time together
As you can see, there are alternatives to using gym equipment! Are you paying for a gym that you don’t use? Cancel it. Are you able to exercise at home? Can you take the stairs at work? Do you like to run or cycle? You can be fit and frugal!