It's true, you don't have to be a gym rat to get in great shape! For gym alternatives that don't cost a penny, please welcome back Dave Smith who has some awesome suggestions. --Crabby
Gym Memberships Are Overrated: How You Can Get In Great Shape Without One
Last week I received an email from a woman who desperately “needed” to lose weight and had only a few weeks to reach her goal. She explained that while she was willing to do whatever it takes, she realized that her situation might be hopeless because she doesn’t have a gym membership.
A gym membership is a prerequisite for getting in shape? Really?
I know this woman is not alone because I’ve heard sentiments like this from many others in the past.
“I’d like to get in shape but I have no time for the gym.”
“If I didn’t hate going to the gym, I’d exercise all the time.”
For some reason going to the gym has become synonymous with fitness. I’d like to offer a few reasons why this notion is far from reality.
1. Exercise Is All Online and It’s All Free
One drawback to signing up for a gym membership is the high monthly cost. I get it – paying $50 or more each month might be a luxury that isn’t worth the investment. But guess what? Every workout you’d ever want to do at the gym can be done at home for free!
Most of these workouts require no equipment, making them perfect for doing in your living room or while travelling. They also vary in class length – There are full-blown 60-minute classes just like the ones you’d take at the gym, and there are quickie workouts that take under 10 minutes.
Money just isn’t a problem when it comes to getting quality exercise done. Check out these free resources and you’ll surely find something that fits your exercise style.
2. Getting In Shape Outdoors Is a Great Alternative to the Gym
If you stay away from the gym because it’s cramped and smelly, maybe it’s time to take your workouts outdoors.
If you’re really lucky, your local park might have some outdoor gym equipment that perfectly replace the machines you’d have access to at a fitness club. These setups are great, but they aren’t required.
Here are some examples of exercises that you can do in any playground.
(Or you could even check out Crabby's tips on designing a playground workout if you dare).
A playground workout is a great way to enjoy the outdoors. Recruit a friend to join you and make it a social outing while you get your workout done.
3. Walking Is Awesome Exercise – Don’t Underestimate It!
You’ve surely heard that adults are supposed to aim for 10,000 steps per day in order to meet the minimum requirements for daily physical activity. That sounds pretty easy to do – Just get out and walk!
Unfortunately, studies have shown that most adults get in about 5,000 steps per day. This is a big missed opportunity because those 10,000 steps burn up to 600 calories, which just so happens to be about the same amount you would burn in a typical fitness class at the gym.
Walking is far too underrated. It’s great exercise and can be done anytime, no gym required.
4. Small Amounts of Exercise Really Add Up
It would be sort of silly to go to the gym for a 15-miunte workout. Taking the time to pack your gym gear, make the commute, and get changed for your workout is too much of a time investment for such a short workout.
This is a shame because short bursts of exercise are more effective than long, drawn-out ones. This means that learning how to build quick workouts into your day is an amazing fitness option that is also a great time-saver.
How can you get started?
Do you get a morning coffee break at work? Here’s a super-quick coffee break workout that will take you just a few minutes to complete. Is there a TV show that you watch every evening? Try this core workout that you can literally do from your sofa!
While individually these workouts might not seem as effective as an all-out session at the gym, the cumulative effect is tremendous. Once you know how to incorporate exercise into your daily routine, there is no reason not to get it done.
Here’s a challenge for you this week whether you have a gym membership or not: Go through these exercise suggestions and find just one gym-free workout that you will enjoy doing. Tell us in the comments section what you’ve chosen!
He specializes in holistic weight-loss rooted in clean eating, daily movement, group accountability and on-going peer support. His motto is “Strive for progress, not perfection” and his goal is long-term change, not quick fixes.
You can learn more about his healthy living and weight-loss programs at makeyourbodywork.com.