5 Ways to Workout Without Spending a Cent
With new year’s resolutions in full-force, many people are looking to get in shape. In fact, the top resolution in 2017 was to “lose weight and eat healthier” and we’re sure that will be a similar trend in 2018. Yet, one statistic showed that 80% of people who joined a gym in January quit within five months. In general, many people find their resolutions hard to stick to, even after just a few weeks.
While staying in shape is a great resolution, it can often be an investment—and maybe that’s a reason why it’s hard to stick to it. Monthly gym memberships are costly, and one-off boutique classes cost a pretty penny.
If you want to jumpstart your workout routine but you’re not willing to cough up a ton of money, keep reading. We’ve explained five easy ways to workout with spending a single cent—making this a great way to switch up your normal workout routine while saving money too!
1.Go for a run.
This one is a no-brainer. Going for a jog, run, or even a power walk is something that’s completely free. All you need is a good pair of sneakers and some warm running gear! If you’re already a runner, then this option is an easy one; just make sure you gear up properly, run while there’s still ample daylight, and watch out for the slick roads due to snow and ice. If running is completely new to you, do not fret! Start with “run/walks” which basically means you break up running with walking stints. See if you can jog for two minutes, followed by one minute of walking. You may also want to consider looking up the “Couch to 5K plan” which also incorporates this run/walk approach. Either way, remember that the roads and trails are completely free, and the only thing you need to bring with you is a little motivation.
2. Try out gym trials.
January is a huge business month for gyms, and many offer special deals for newcomers. Still, those deals won’t be completely free. If you’re curious about eventually finding a new gym, a great way to make the right choice is to test a few out. Most gyms offer a free day pass—or even a free week pass—so you can try out their equipment, classes, locker rooms, and other amenities. If you’re up for a little exploration and gym hopping, then definitely use January as a time to try a few out to see which one you’d like to invest in!
3. Find a fitness app
There are tons of fitness apps on the market, from bodyweight exercises to running routes, yoga, and even CrossFit-type workouts. Apps are a great way to bring workout classes to you, and are especially handy when traveling! It’s also a great way to learn new fitness routines you can eventually do on your own.
Search the app store to find your favorites, or check out our recommendations, which are all free:
- Aaptiv: A fitness company that produces audio-based workouts created by certified personal trainers. Includes a free trial!
- Zombies, Run!: A running app with special audio; if you hear you’re being chased by zombies, you’ll have to speed up! Interval training, anyone?
- Sworkit: A strength training app that has videos for any type of regime—from abs to yoga, to advance full body. 7-day free trial included!
- Daily Yoga: A free, studio-like yoga experience in the comfort of your home. Can we get a namaste?
- 7-Minute Workout: Bring the scientific 7-minute workout to you. The app includes a timer and images so you can move through the 12 exercises with ease.
4. See what your office offers.
Your workplace might be an unexpected (and free) way to stay fit this winter. See if your office offers any corporate fitness challenges. Or, talk to HR to inquire about a corporate gym membership! If you work for a small team, coerce people into daily plank challenges at lunch or push-ups before meetings. If anything, find a buddy who will go for a walk with you during lunch to get some steps in.
5. Make the outdoors your gym
It may be winter, but that doesn’t mean you need to stay stuck inside. While the gym, or even your living room floor, are great places to workout, sometimes that doesn’t beat the beauty of the outdoors. Plus, you’ll get an extra boost of Vitamin D! Here are some ways you can use the outdoors as your natural gym:
- Be your own Stairmaster. Head to a local stadium, find some bleachers, and start walking or jogging! See if you can do repeats for 20-30 minutes, mimicking the Stairmaster machine, but with much better views!
- Use playgrounds! A lot of local playgrounds now have fitness stations. Work your abs, perfect your pull-ups, strengthen the quads, and more. Check out your local parks to see what they offer.
- Find local trails. Get the blood flowing by going on a power hike! Extra points are given if you can find a trail that has some steady ascents to really challenge the leg muscles.
If you’re craving community, definitely try to get a fitness friend to explore these options with you. Have a workout party in your own home, and turn on an app! Go for a run with a coworker at lunch, or get a group to do a long hike with you on the weekends. If you like solitude, any of these fitness ideas work great for solo-exercisers too.
Either way, one thing should be clear: You don’t need to shell out a ton of money to get fit. Instead, you just need a little motivation and creativity! These different types of workouts should mix things up for you—targeting all different types of muscles while getting your heart rate up. And since they’re completely free, it’ll be hard to say no, helping you keep your new year’s resolution for all of 2018.