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If you exercise, there are many ways to reduce your expenses.
You may think that getting a healthy workout means spending a lot of money for a gym membership or buying expensive exercise equipment.
However, there are quite a few ways to workout on a budget that are much cheaper, and some of them are even free.
So without further delay, here are ten ways to workout on a budget.
10. Workout at home
You can get good workouts in many other places besides the gym.
Although the luxuries provided by a gym are rather nice, they usually cost a decent amount of money.
So if you are carefully watching your dollars, you should not consider this option.
One of the cheapest ways to workout on a budget is to exercise at home.
This option is listed first because it makes so much sense and is such an obvious choice for those who are frugal.
Exercising at home is also the foundation that allows for numerous other options for you to save money.
Ways you save money when you workout on a budget at home
You save money in multiple ways. First of all, you don’t have any travel expenses. Secondly, you don’t have to buy nice gym clothes because you will not be in a public place where you would need to look fashionable.
Your biggest area of savings would be the fact that you do not have to pay any gym fees. In addition, you do not have to worry about getting locked into multi-year contracts that usually have severe early termination costs. You can workout on a budget and save a tremendous amount of money.
In order to make up for the loss of live trainers and classes led by experts at your local gym, you can instead watch thousands of exercise videos available for free on the web. Just make sure that you are watching high quality videos and be careful of sales pitches.
In conclusion, never forget that you can always take a walk in your yard, around the house, or in your own neighborhood. Never forget that Mother Nature is always free, and the last time I checked, her rates had not changed for thousands of years.
9. Buy equipment that has the most bang for the buck
If you decide that you should not join a gym or another similar type of facility, then you may need different kinds of equipment for various exercises. One of the most sensible options for this is to buy equipment that can be used in many ways because this allows you to workout on a budget more effectively.
Some of the more popular equipment choices, like ab burners, usually work only one part of the body and are rather expensive. However, there are cheap things you can buy that have millions of exercise applications.
These handy little tools can be used to work your abs. In addition, they can be used to support your body during weight training and cardio. The prices for exercise balls begin at a little under seven dollars.
Exercise step risers
Step risers can be used for various aerobic exercises as well as a weight bench. They start at around $24 dollars and many of these tools may be adjusted for height, depending on what kind you get.
Resistance bands can be used to work all of the muscles in your body. They begin at around nine dollars and may be purchased in a wide variety of colors and sizes.
Dumbbells and barbells
Many exercise coaches will tell you that exercises with free weights (dumbbells and barbells) are superior to exercises on weight machines. Because they allow for multi-joint exercises, they help train movement as well as muscles.
The prices for free weights start at around five dollars and certain types allow for adjustment of weight.
Jump ropes are convenient and cheap, and there are literally hundreds of different ways they may be used. Starting at about four dollars, there are professional types of jump ropes that come with carrying pouches.
There are also many different types of multi-colored jump ropes for children that are even cheaper.
8. Used fitness equipment
If you have not recently visited your garage, basement, or attic, you might find some things that will let you have more exercise options. Many of us have old equipment lying around the house, and you might find a few things still in good shape.
You may also want to offer to clean up the more cluttered places of the homes of your friends and family because you may find a few old things you could use to help you workout on a budget. Garage sales and yard sales are also great places to find good equipment for pennies on the dollar.
7. Try Bodyweight Workouts
You should also be aware that you do not need to have any equipment in order to get a good workout. This is because there are lots of exercises that require nothing more than your body.
Here is a list of resistance exercises:
- Back extensions
- Tricep Dips
This is a list of cardio exercises:
- Knee lifts
- Power squats
- Jumping jacks
- Jogging in place
- Side steps
As your ability increases, you can do lots of things to make these types of exercises more difficult. If you just use your creative imagination, you can probably come up with dozens of ways to do this. By doing these kinds of exercises, you have more options that will allow you to workout on a budget.
Here is a list of a few ideas that will increase the difficulty of certain bodyweight exercises:
Do slow reps of three to nine seconds in order to increase the amount of tension received by the muscles you are targeting.
Perform smaller movements at a faster pace
Instead of performing a full-range of motions, shorten them so that you can do them faster. For instance, when you are doing a squat, start at the very bottom of the movement and then move about halfway up before going back down.
Perform more repetitions
If you find any of the various body weight exercises to be a little too easy, then simply continue doing more and more reps until your body becomes tired. You can also set a timer and go by the number of minutes you perform your exercises and not worry about a number.
6. Use free stuff online
There are millions of apps, websites, and communities all over the net that will help you exercise for free. Many of these are free or use some type of freemium system for membership and registration. Any one of these things could allow you to workout on a budget more efficiently.
If you miss the companionship offered by all of the people working out at the gym, then just go online. You will find an abundance of people waiting to give you help or listen to your story. Just be sure to be kind and reciprocate.
You can post your diet and exercise plan on a message board. In addition, you can use an online tracker to track where you are going to walk or run. You can even join online communities where exercise topics are discussed in great detail, like the one at bodybuilding.com.
5. Join local sports leagues
One of the more sensible things you can do is get support from your community so everyone can have more fun and get in shape. Most of the time, everything is provided and all you have to do is just show up. Joining a local sports league is a great way to workout on a budget.
The variety of different types of sports that have community leagues is overwhelming. There are even Muggle Quidditch organizations that are open to the public. There are also many frisbee organizations all over the country.
However, the fun doesn’t end there. There are also organizations that support activities like rock climbing walls. There are also volleyball leagues and other more obscure sporting teams in many cities.
So as you can see, it’s not just about the typical sports leagues like softball, basketball, and soccer. There are many other options, and most of them are lots of fun. There are even flag football leagues that are very safe because there is no tackling allowed.
One of the more popular leagues is WAKA, and it is a nationwide kickball organization with a healthy presence in different cities all over the United States. A season of kickball usually has eight games and a championship tournament.
The leagues are somewhere from five to ten co-ed teams, and that means is that you will make lots of new friends throughout the season. In addition, if your team is good enough, you might make it to the Founders Cup World Kickball Championship that is held every year in Las Vegas!
4. Training with partners and instructors
Personal training is a good choice whenever you need guidance, but it can be expensive. However, there is a wide range of personal training options out there that are much cheaper and can save you money when you are trying to workout on a budget.
Two low cost options are you training with a partner, or you and a partner training with an instructor. Training with a partner would be free, and if you and your partner wanted to train together with an instructor you could share all of the expenses, including travel.
Training with a partner
There are many reasons why it makes sense to train with a partner. The biggest one is that it provides a greater amount of motivation for you to exercise. In addition, it is also a lot more fun whenever you spend time with someone you care about.
However, there are lots of practical reasons why it makes sense to train with another. First of all, there are many weight training exercises, like the bench press and squats, that require a spotter. Secondly, you and your partner can take turns and count each other’s reps.
It is also important to note that if you are walking or running in a park or a remote area, you are
much safer than you are if you are by yourself. In addition, if one of you should have some sort of medical emergency, like a heart attack, the other one can get immediate help.
You and your partner training with an instructor
While a personal training session with an instructor may cost $40 to $120, you can save money by splitting the cost with a partner. Sharing your exercise session with either a friend or family member can not only save you money, but also give you even more motivation to exercise.
For this option to work the best, you should have a partner who is at about the same level of fitness as you are. If an instructor has to constantly worry about different levels of fitness training, they may be inclined to charge more. This is not good if you are trying to work out on a budget.
However, you should also know that some trainers offer training with workout stations for each client. You should check with others and see if anyone wants to train in a group. You can also call local trainers or gyms to see if there are any empty slots available.
3. YMCA financial assistance for membership
The YMCA offers financial assistance for YMCA membership. You will be given an amount that is based on your needs due to income and other circumstances. This option is a great way to workout on a budget if you are able to qualify.
In order to apply for this type of assistance, you can download an application or stop by the Welcome Center at your local YMCA. There, you can submit your application as well as the requested documentation.
However, if you prefer to apply online, go to the website of your local YMCA and fill out and submit the appropriate forms.
The mission of the YMCA
According to the many YMCA websites all across the country, it is the mission of the YMCA to provide the appropriate services for those who wish to participate in the YMCA, even for those individuals who cannot afford the fees.
The YMCA raises funds to provide financial help to families. Those who are not able to pay the proper fees may be provided with assistance based on their financial situation. The YMCA, however, reserves the right to refuse assistance at any time.
In order to be eligible for this type of assistance, applicants must either work or reside in the YMCA of the area where they are applying and meet the proper income requirements.
The YMCA believes a sense of ownership is developed when a recipient contributes to the total expenses of their YMCA involvement.
Because of this, applicants will be asked to be responsible for a certain percentage of the fees involved. Once you are approved, your local YMCA will give you financial assistance for one year, and it is valid for participating programs at the location that has granted the assistance.
Here is a list of the documentation that is required to complete the process:
- All of the appropriate completed application forms
- A copy of the applicant’s most recent tax return
- Proof of income for all working household members
- Proof of household income received from other sources
2. Walking and shopping at a local mall
Walking is one of the best kinds of exercise, and walking in the mall is second in popularity only to walking in neighborhoods. Malls are excellent places to walk because they provide sheltered indoor spaces free from bad weather and traffic. What a great way to work out on a budget!
You can walk alone or with others. Having the support of others can help motivate you to keep exercising. It is also fun to talk while looking at all of the beautiful scenery.
Convenience and low cost
In addition, it is convenient because you can set your own schedule and walk whenever the mall is open. Furthermore, they are easy to get to, and many have bus stops. They also have benches, water fountains, accessible restrooms, and a food court with tables and chairs.
Another thing to remember is that it is free. You never have to buy anything, and you don’t need special exercise equipment other than comfortable shoes.
Also remember that you can walk at the pace you establish. As you get used to walking, you can increase the intensity and the duration of your walk. You can also take the stairs to add to the intensity of your exercise journey.
Finally, mall walking is non-competitive and relaxing. You can exercise while being social in a friendly environment. Best of all, there is always a security staff make malls a safer place to walk. Remember, that you need to be safe whenever you workout on a budget.
Shopping in the mall
You should always remember that browsing or shopping in any of the stores of a mall may be considered to be another form of physical activity, although these things are not as strenuous.
In fact, it could be prudent to spend a certain amount of time just standing in a store while examining various pieces of merchandise as a way to extend the total time spent on your feet instead sitting on a couch.
For instance, a walk from one end of the mall to the other may take thirty minutes. However, if you stop at a jewelry store, you can extend the overall time you spend on your feet instead of sitting down, watching television, and cramming potato chips into your greedy little mouth.
So take your time while walking through your local mall and stop to smell the roses while looking at all of the beautiful merchandise for sale. Your health will thank you for it.
1. Local parks and walking trails
Whenever the weather is good, it is hard to beat the beautiful scenery and wonderful ambience of a nice neighborhood park. Parks are the perfect places to walk, and almost every one of them has some kind of walking path or bike trail. These options are perfect choices when you want to workout on a budget.
You can meet up with other people enjoying nature, and also spend quality time with your children and pets while staying in shape by getting enough physical activity.
Trails and urban passages
There are also many sorts of trails where you can take a pleasant journey through nature.
You’ll find everything from short to long routes and more challenging trails that include hills. Also remember, that many of these trails pass through a variety of landscapes.
There are also many urban passages that provide you with safe access across many areas of different cities. Most of these urban passages also provide neat places to visit, including libraries and museums.
There are also many amenities in several urban locations as well as sidewalks and paths that allow you to visit several of these sorts of places while getting in some precious walking time enjoying each one of them on a pleasant Sunday stroll throughout the town. So have fun while you workout on a budget.
Final thoughts about the various ways to workout on a budget
When you look at the many ways to walk around and enjoy life, love, and nature, it seems rather foolish to pay money, so you can walk like a hamster on a treadmill while you stare mindlessly at a lit screen.
If you would have said several hundred years ago that one day, people would actually spend their hard-earned money just to walk in one place without going anywhere, everyone would have said that you were crazy.
That’s because it is crazy to walk on a treadmill when the wonderful world waits for you to enjoy her marvelous beauty.
You can stay at home and spend time with your family and pets while you exercise. You don’t need a gym for anything when you really examine the situation more closely.
What’s my motivation?
The many alternatives available to gym membership are superior in so many ways, it is hard to see how these institutions are able to stay in business. You already have everything you need to get fit; all you need is to have the motivation to do it.
So why not buy a dumbbell or two and start lifting it in sets of 8 to 10 reps. You do realize you can do this on your couch while enjoying your favorite tv shows for free. Why get dressed, drive several miles, pay money, and then do the same thing.
If you need motivation, call up your friends and family, and start exercising with them. You can even meet at each other’s houses and make an event out of each workout session. You can even get your children involved because they also need to know how to workout on a budget.
Who knows? Maybe even your playful family pooch will also want to join in the festivities.