Memberships to swanky gyms can be expensive, but these five recommendations for lowering your monthly costs can help you get fit on a budget and have you jump-squatting for joy. Because living a fit, healthy lifestyle doesn’t need additional obstacles.
Subscribe to an app
Way cheaper than the average gym membership, fitness apps from celebrity trainers and athletes have exploded, and options are available for just about any goal (Toning your arms! Losing body fat! Improving cardiovascular health!) for a nominal fee. You can use these apps in a gym setting, but many offer complete workouts that require little to no equipment. They also often include activity trackers and nutrition recommendations, so you’re getting even more bang for your buck.
Use social media to your advantage
Never has there been a better time to access free workouts, because everyone from social media influencers to trainers and professional body builders post their circuits online with videos and tips to help with form. You can perform many of the exercises right in your own living room and without equipment. Over time, though, you may want to invest in a few items, such as a stability ball, resistance bands and free weights, so you get the best results for your efforts.
Take up running
If you’re not already a runner, lacing up your running shoes and going for a jog can seem daunting (even if you’ve had that all-important good night’s sleep). But there are many practical benefits to integrating running into your training routine: you can do it anywhere (whether you’re travelling in a foreign country, stuck out at a cottage or in the heart of a big city), it’s suitable to most seasons and you can go at your own pace (even if that means walking for certain intervals). Motivate yourself by using a running app that tracks distance and speed so that you can chart improvements.
Find a workout buddy
If you tend to use the money spent on your gym membership to guilt yourself into working out, finding someone to exercise with might be even more effective. You can keep each other accountable and can plan walking, running, cycling, swimming (often, entrance to public pools is practically free!) and body-weight workouts that you can do together. You might even be able to use your friend’s gym if he or she lives in a building with exercise facilities or share the cost of purchasing your own equipment.
Sign up for trials
Many gyms and studios offer highly discounted rates for new customers looking to test out their facilities. These offerings tend to range from a single free class to a whole month of unlimited workouts at a fraction of the usual price. While bouncing from gym to gym to get discounts isn’t a long-term solution, it can be a great way to work out on the cheap if you need to save some money over several months, or if you’re looking for a gym that you actually like and will use regularly.