With so many employees working from home these days, it’s easy to get complacent and forget to stretch our legs. Unfortunately, the pandemic closed many fitness centers and gyms. Those eager to get their fit lifestyle started are left to figure out how to exercise at home instead.
While you’re planning your fitness goals, you’ll need to take your personal finances into consideration. Knowing what to spend your money on to get fit can be tricky. Especially when gym memberships aren’t much use in some parts of the country. In the end, you may find that working out at home is much more convenient and less expensive than your local gym.
The following are five ways to exercise at home and stay on track with your fitness goals all without sacrificing your budget.
Online Fitness Communities
If you’re like us, you probably signed up for a gym membership because you like the accountability. Being around other people while you work out can make it easier to stay motivated. A sense of accountability comes from working out in a class. But with the pandemic starting in 2020, many gym-goers lost their option to even visit a gym. As a result, online fitness classes and communities stepped in to take their place.
The benefit of online classes is that they’re often much cheaper than a gym membership. With this method, you can do similar workouts and exercise from home without having to pay for the upkeep of a full gym and staff.
Exercising From Home Can Be Cheaper Than a Gym
Working out at home can be much cheaper than paying for a gym membership. Period. Gym memberships often prey on unknowing customers and attractive up-front offers. Signing bonuses or discounted first months may bring you through the door.
But there are likely hidden fees and costs that will come up. Annual fees, higher monthly costs after your introductory offer wears off, and extra coaching costs. Gyms know that people want to reinvent themselves and make it easy to sign up. Terminating your contract early or not being able to pay your bill later may mean you’re on the hook for hundreds of dollars in a year.
Note: The average cost of a gym membership is about $600 to $700 per year in the United States.
Exercise at Home = Easier Commute
One of the biggest reasons people cite for not going to the gym is the commute. After a long day at work or on a chilly morning, getting to the gym is an exercise itself. And once you’re there, you may be strapped for time to commute back home again. Despite there being nearly 40,000 gym clubs around the country, they can still be a few miles from home.
Working out from home though? You’re already there! Separating your gym workouts into a separate room or somewhere other than your office helps too. It can compartmentalize your workouts mentally. Having a dedicated room to work in for remote workers boosts productivity. Moving your workout somewhere other than your normal work area and play spaces can keep your inspiration for working out strong.
The Benefits of Used Workout Equipment
Without a gym membership, you may need to still buy gym equipment for your home. However, gym equipment doesn’t have to be expensive. Every year, throngs of inspired Americans make resolutions to start working out. Treadmill and dumbbell sales go through the roof. Unfortunately, that enthusiasm often wanes. And then used gym equipment gets strewn about the house.
This means you can regularly find gym equipment in great condition on your local Craigslist or Facebook Marketplace. Picking up a set of basic weights and exercise mats to get started won’t set you back much money at all. You can also search your area for used gym equipment and sporting good stores.
Working Out in Public Parks
COVID-19 showed us the beauty of our public parks! Close to 75% of Americans live within 10 minutes of a public park or space. Working out in public parks is a great way to start your fitness journey. Buying fitness equipment and taking classes means commitment. But visiting your local public park for a walk or a jog costs nothing.
Public parks aren’t just for walking though. Many fitness trails have popped up around the country. They include free-to-use fitness equipment built into the park landscape. You can do pull-ups, stretches, and more while you’re at the park. Here, you can see how New York City offers fitness equipment across the city for its residents free of charge.
Your fitness adventure may lead you back to a gym in the future. But being aware of how much a gym membership actually costs may have you reevaluating your choices! Working out from home doesn’t have to be boring. You can attend classes or find online communities to help you achieve your goals. Save money in your budget and don’t be afraid to try out new classes or strategies to keep you motivated!