We’re in to week 3 of the spending freeze challenge and I’m going to focus on a topic near and dear to my heart – exercise. I lived most of my life as a non-athlete. And not just a “I don’t like to work out” non-athlete, but a clutzy, clumsy, graceless person. I tripped over my own two feet, I feared making a moron out of myself at the gym. Things changed for me around 2008 and you can read more about my journey to my first marathon in one of my favorite blog posts. I say all of that to say this: exercise can be as expensive as you’d like it to be. Maybe you’ve made athletic spending part of your freeze and maybe you have not. Either way, one day you might be shopping for your first set of running shoes and the next contemplating spending a few thousand dollars on a treadmill. It can escalate quickly.
So here are a few simple tips on keeping your exercise costs low or avoiding them all together –
- Do the cost benefit analysis on your gym membership – are you taking the free classes they’re offering you? Are you only there in the morning to use the treadmill? Are you comfortable there? Consider the true benefits of membership before you commit to years of paying $75 a month. We’ve gone without gym membership for periods of time and I’ve never been truly heartbroken without it. And that’s in Northeast Ohio where Polar Vortex is the norm.
- If your family is struggling financially, the YMCA turns no family away for inability to pay. You will need to complete forms and verify your income, but the Y is a wonderful place to bring children for swimming lessons, the family for group swim time and to give you a place to exercise and place your children in the provided child watch service while you do. The Y is our gym and is an important part of our family community.
- I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again – dig out what is hiding in your closets and put it to use. Maybe you bought a yoga mat 2 years ago or inherited some free weights from a relative. Pinterest and YouTube are full of free workout options, no gym required.
I’ll add some more posts this week about exercise and would love to hear from you – how do you spend money on exercise? Is it a priority for you and your family? Where and how do you save costs?
Day 16’s Post