5 Ways to Save Money When Getting Fit

5 Ways to Save Money When Getting Fit

It can be easy to fall into the trap of thinking that you need a lot of money to get fit. Gym memberships, workout gear, nutritional supplements… But leading an active life doesn’t need to cost much. There are many things you can do to integrate healthy living into your life and to minimize costs, whether you're starting from scratch or maintaining a healthy lifestyle. Read on for some tips.

Research gyms and memberships carefully
If you thrive in a structured gym environment, with classes and trainers and other members keeping you on track, then do some research into the best gym membership for you. Somewhere that suits a man with a full-time corporate job won’t necessarily suit a stay-at-home mom. 

Some gyms offer discounts to attend only during ‘off peak’ hours. Depending on your schedule, these can be an easy way to save money on gym memberships. If you have young kids, look for gyms with free childcare. It’s also often cheaper to sign up for a gym for a longer period, so if you’re ready to commit, it may be cheaper to sign up for a 12-month plan than a 6-month one. Also, many gyms offer free introductory classes. If you live in a larger city, you can trial a lot of places for free before committing to one!

Get outdoors
Not everyone thrives in a gym environment, but there are many ways you can exercise outdoors for free. If you live by a river, try running along the banks. If you live by the sea or a lake, take up swimming. If you live in a hilly place, build hill walking into your exercise routine. Instead of walking your dog, run with them! Go bike riding with your kids. If you’re used to binge-watching TV serials at the weekends, think about how you can build your town’s facilities and features into your exercise routine. This doesn’t need to cost any money at all.

Change everyday habits
While it can be hard to find time for dedicated exercise, you can also build more activity into your everyday life. Take the stairs instead of the elevator. Walk or bike to work, or park further away. Walk at a faster pace than you normally would. Avoid short-cuts and walk an extra block. Go for a walk during your lunch break. Adding these things into your life won’t necessarily build a 6-pack, but they will make you healthier over time, at no extra cost.

Grow your own food
Vegetables can, unfortunately, be more expensive than some junk food. If you have a garden or any outdoor space to grow your own herbs and vegetables, this can give you double benefits. Gardening itself can be an active habit when you use various muscle groups (squatting, lifting, etc). Plus, if you successfully grow some edible plants, you’ll be supplementing your diet with healthy, nutritious foods. You can spend as little (or as much!) money as you want on gardening.

Buy second-hand exercise clothes
You don’t need fancy clothes to exercise, so don’t let a lack of money for branded leggings stop you from getting fit. Many thrift or consignment stores sell good quality, gently used exercise clothing that nobody will ever know was not bought new. Keep an eye out for unused items with their tags still attached. The one thing you should invest in is new, comfortable sports shoes that will support your feet, but good t-shirts, shorts, and sweatpants can be found for very little cost at second-hand stores.

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