You’ve made a promise to yourself to really work on getting fit this coming year–preferably before it’s time for your bigger summer vacation – but your wallet can’t quite cope with the extra strain that an expensive gym membership or sessions with a pricey personal trainer will put on it. Does that mean your efforts and good intentions are doomed to failure before you ever get started? Not at all!
Despite all you might read in those glossy lifestyle and fitness magazines getting fit does not have to involve going to the gym, and it does not have to involve buying the latest ab trainer/thigh trainer/waist whittler machine on the market. All you really need is a bit of time, the desire to get healthier this year and a look through some of these suggestions for getting fit on a budget:
Check Your Health Insurance Policy
If you have health insurance give your policy a closer look. An increasing number of health plans offer extras like gym discounts and even organized fitness events that insured members can take part in free of charge or at a very low cost. There may also be fitness equipment discounts available that you were unaware of. While not all health insurance plans offer these perks an increasing number of them do, so it is ceratinly worth taking a second look at the ‘fine print’ on your policy.
Don’t Get Stuck in the Trend Trap
Fitness trends change all the time. One month all everyone can rave about is hot yoga and the next everyone is Zumba’ing all over the place. The one thing all of these fitness trends have in common is that none of them are usually inexpensive to take part in. If you have the spare cash and it sounds like fun, sure go ahead. But don’t feel pressured by all the media hype (or nudges from your friends); old-fashioned things like circuit training, running and even plain old walking still work just fine and are better in line with your plans of getting fit on a budget.
Train for Something
Every year there are all kinds of charity walks and races held all over the country and maybe training for one of those will give you the motivation you will need to stick to your getting fit on a budget plan. In addition, to train successfully for such things you will need to do lots of very basic things; running, walking, jogging, stretching, stamina training, all of which are pretty much free.
Download an App
The one thing that many of us seem to find it hard to live without these days is a smartphone. And most of those smartphones are connected to an app market, which are all home to more than a few great workout and fitness apps, many of which are also free to download.
The advantage of some of these apps is that many of them offer little extras; a great workout track, a virtual personal trainer, a timed workout or in some cases even instructional videos. Best of all perhaps is that if you find that one app and its offerings do not suit you you can always delete it and try another at very little cost.
Create a Budget Home Gym
You don’t need a big expensive treadmill or stair stepper to get fit (a walk in the park and the stairs are perfectly good substitutes) but small pieces of equipment like lightweight dumbbells, medicine balls and resistance can be very helpful to have on hand at home. Fortunately none of these are particularly expensive. And there are even cheap stand – ins you can make use of. For example, if you have no weights bottles filled with water – or even cans of baked beans – can make great alternatives.