Scrap the gym payments: 5 cheap workouts that will shed pounds

There aren’t many Americans who can’t afford to shed at least a few pounds. Signing up for a gym membership isn’t always the best answer, though. While I do frequent the gym nowadays, there was a time when I — gulp — went a whole year without setting foot inside one, and was footing the bill anyway.

Cynthia Phillips exercises. Photo: Chris Hunt, AJC

Cynthia Phillips exercises. Photo: Chris Hunt, AJC

I cringe when I think about the hundreds of dollars I’ve thrown away on un-used gym memberships. It’s no time for a pity-party, though. Rather, I’m here to give you a few tips on working out without putting out big bucks.

1. Go for a walk. Yes, the weather is getting colder, but if you bundle up and cover your hands and head, you’ll be fine taking a brisk walk in the park or around your neighborhood.

2. Play a sport. I love basketball, but it doesn’t always love me back. My knees can hardly take the quick cuts and stop-and-go action. However, if you can hold up, playing a sport you enjoy, like tennis or basketball, on a regular basis will help keep you in shape.

3. Go for a run. Jogging a few miles a week is great for your heart. Even better, it won’t cost you a dime.

4. Buy a DVD. Kickboxing, Pilates, Stepping…you can find a DVD for it all in your local stores like Target and Walmart. They are relatively cheap and will give you a good 30-minute or more workout. Clear some space in your living room, or designate another room in your home just for exercising.

5. Purchase equipment. No one is asking you to turn your den into LA Fitness or Gold’s. You can, however, outfit your place with a few low-budget essentials, like a stability ball, yoga mat, free weights, medicine ball and resistance bands. You can spend under $100 and be equipped for exercising that will help you lose weight and stay toned.

Not a gym rat? How do you stay in shape? What low-cost way will you use to get rid of the holiday bulge?

Follow me on Twitter @atlbargains

7 comments Add your comment

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Tar Heel

December 29th, 2009
11:50 pm

That’s disgusting. Doesn’t someone preview these comments before they are posted.

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Matt the Brave

December 30th, 2009
5:48 pm

Just saw Biggest Loser DVDs on sale this week for $10 at Target and certain others at Wal-Mart for $9. These are great DVDs and actually work! (I’ve lost 10 inches off of my gut in four months of doing Biggest Loser Cardio and Boot Camp: also combined this with eating less!)

BongWater Slurpee

December 31st, 2009
10:56 am

Just a little excercise a day will pay off. GET BUSY YA FAT HIPPO!


December 31st, 2009
5:20 pm

Remember the local library. Our branches in Gwinnett have a nice selection of DVDs and they’re free.

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