Free and Low Cost Fitness Ideas to Jump Start Your New Year's Resolution

Older man getting ready to jog

A new year is upon us, which means it’s time for New Year’s Resolutions. One of the most common resolutions every year is to “get fit” or “exercise more.” While this is a great resolution to have, it can come with a hefty price tag.

You run off and join a gym the first week of January and commit to a contract with them. That contract comes with sign-up fees and monthly membership fees that will be the same whether you go to the gym every day or never step foot in it ever again. Which, by the way, is what they’re counting on. They want to lock you into a contract that will cost you every single month even if you stop coming after a few weeks.

Let’s face it, if the weather’s bad, you probably won’t feel like driving to the gym. And you’ll end up being too tired after work to go then. And how many days will you really commit to getting out of bed earlier to get to the gym? It’s a good idea, but a hard one to see through.

There’s a better way to get fit this year without wasting your money on a gym membership. With all of the online options, DVDs, and even free classes, you don’t spend a lot to get fit.

Local Free Classes

You may be surprised to find that several churches and community centers offer free fitness classes. And you don’t have to be a member to participate. A little online research or a few phone calls should help you find some.

DVDs/TV

Did you know there are several fitness shows on network television? You can DVR your favorites or watch them on your streaming service. Or find a DVD of a workout you enjoy and purchase it. It will cost you less than one-month of a gym membership and you can do it as often as you like without ever leaving home. You can even find full-length workout options for free on YouTube.

Gaia

If yoga and Pilates are your thing, then Gaia is for you. Yes, there’s a fee, but it’s far less than a month of gym membership and you can take as many classes as you’d like, whenever you want to, from a variety of instructors. Currently, the annual plan is on sale for $59. If you miss the sale, keep an eye on Groupon, they frequently offer discount codes.

Fit Design by Annie

If you love weight training, you can work out with Annie, a personal trainer, right from the comfort of your home. She offers a few programs that are far less expensive than an annual gym membership.

Peanut Butter Fingers

This is another online option for working with a personal trainer, but this one offers free workout programs that you can print or view. You may need a few simple pieces of exercise equipment to complete the workouts.

Before you commit your time and money to a gym, check out the options that are free or inexpensive that you can do right from your own home. The money you save on gas alone will pay for some of these options. And, you won’t have the excuse of bad weather or late nights to keep you from getting fit.

Tagged in Navigating change, Holidays, Reducing expenses

Emilie writes about overcoming debt, while balancing trying to eat healthy, stay fit, and have a little fun along the way. You can find more of her work at BurkeDoes.com.

  • The Consumer Federation of America (CFA) is an association of nonprofit consumer organizations that was established in 1968 to advance the consumer interest through research, advocacy, and education. Today, nearly 300 of these groups participate in the federation and govern it through their representatives on the organization's Board of Directors.
  • The National Council of Higher Education Resources (NCHER) is the nation’s oldest and largest higher education finance trade association. NCHER’s membership includes state, nonprofit, and for-profit higher education service organizations, including lenders, servicers, guaranty agencies, collection agencies, financial literacy providers, and schools, interested and involved in increasing college access and success. It assists its members in shaping policies governing federal and private student loan and state grant programs on behalf of students, parents, borrowers, and families.

  • Since 2007, the Homeownership Preservation Foundation (HPF) has served as a trusted, neutral source of information for more than eight million homeowners. They are partnered with, and endorsed by, numerous major government agencies, including the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development and the Department of the Treasury.

  • The mission of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) is to create strong, sustainable, inclusive communities and quality affordable homes for all. HUD works to strengthen the housing market in order to bolster the economy and protect consumers; meet the need for quality affordable rental homes; utilize housing as a platform for improving quality of life; and build inclusive and sustainable communities free from discrimination.

  • The Council on Accreditation (COA) is an international, independent, nonprofit, human service accrediting organization. Their mission is to partner with human service organizations worldwide to improve service delivery outcomes by developing, applying, and promoting accreditation standards.

  • The National Foundation for Credit Counseling® (NFCC®), founded in 1951, is the nation’s largest and longest-serving nonprofit financial counseling organization. The NFCC’s mission is to promote the national agenda for financially responsible behavior, and build capacity for its members to deliver the highest-quality financial education and counseling services.