Getting in Shape for Less: How to Save Money on Athletics & Exercise (L45)

We all know the struggle; to gym, or not to gym. But, after all the excuses we conjure up to avoid going to work out, physical health certainly isn’t the only thing paying for your negligence, and this is something that we need to start realizing! How much are you paying for that monthly membership? If you go to Planet Fitness, try somewhere between $10-$20 monthly – not including workout gear or other hidden fee’s. At other gyms like WOW (Workout World) and the YMCA, the membership fee’s seem to be somewhere closer to the $10 end of membership fee’s. The building alone will cost you about $120 a year. Now tack on some new running shoes, a few pairs of leggings and tank tops. It is all adding up much faster than it originally seemed it would, isn’t it? My first question for you to ask yourself is, how often do you use the gym? If you’re going once a month, try looking at the monthly fee as an entrance fee – it makes the cost less appealing. This may curb your habits either causing you to go to the gym more often, or on the other hand, it may push you straight out of the gym to the wide-open, free outdoors. Personally I would rather pay for a light fleece and some thicker leggings and take a run around the block or to the pond and home, than run in place in a sweaty crowded building. If you swear by indoor workouts, try and schedule gym time into your week so that it can’t be avoided. If you have a friend who likes going to the gym too, maybe you could have the membership under one name but split the monthly cost; you could go as each other’s friend/guest for free if the gym allows it. (The only issue with this is trying to get into the gym without having your name on the account.)

Going back to the topic of workout gear, DO NOT be afraid of second hand stores! When I was younger I played soccer; I went to the thrift shop with my mom in search of some new running shorts and ended up stumbling upon a basically brand new pair of cleats that must’ve been the wrong size for their original owner. Sports cleats can cost anywhere from $60-$250 or even more. I paid $10 for Nike cleats that hadn’t even been broken in. There are certain stores dedicated specifically to second hand sports gear as well. You don’t always need the newest hottest leggings, or the prettiest shorts. Nobody will know the difference between a slightly used hockey stick and a brand new one, but you will appreciate the difference left in your wallet.  Sometimes, it makes more sense to buy a cheap t-shirt and sweat pants – when you’re panting and sweating trying to get in shape qualifies as one of those times. Make sure what you’re purchasing is comfortable as well! If you buy equipment that isn’t well suited to you, you probably will use it as an excuse not to work out as well.-

A HUGE chunk of athletic costs goes to water believe it or not. Say you buy a water bottle every time you go to the gym for $2 a bottle. Even if you only go to the gym about once a week, it is almost another $10 a month that you’re paying to workout. This can be avoided with a one-time purchase of a water bottle. Maybe you prefer a filtered bottle, or a metal one, but whatever floats your boat, it will certainly be much cheaper than paying for water every time you go out. If you would rather not hassle with filtering your water, consider buying water bottles in bulk packages at the supermarket. This will also save you a significant amount of money and it’s something that I actually do at my house.

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