After I quit competitive running due to an injury, I wanted to stay in shape. My biggest mistake was thinking that by joining a gym, I would be a lot more motivated to work out because I spent money on it. Therefore, my thought process was, "I just spent $70 for the month, so I better visit the gym as many times as possible in order to get full value for my money."
Unfortunately, that was not the case.
Some of my excuses were:
~I don't want to drive there right now
~I'm too tired
~I get my exercise by running/walking/using my free weights at home and therefore I don't need to go that often
~I'll go tomorrow (and then that didn't necessarily happen)
Ultimately, I maybe went 2x a week, and would have saved more money just by paying a drop-in fee each time I went.
Here are the reasons why I do NOT need a gym membership anymore:
1.To avoid being ambushed by a high pressure salesperson who will tell me the benefits of working out at their gym. They will tell me that they care about my well-being and they will be my best friend for the hour that they lead me around the gym. However, their ONLY goal is to get me to sign a non-refundable 2 year contract in order to milk me for approximately $900. Face it, the longer the contract you sign, the higher the commissions the salesperson will make.
2. I work out on my own. When I'm at home working out, I can get as sweaty as I want to, while listening to MY favorite music. At a gym, I usually don't work out as hard, because I don't want to get too sweaty.
3. I do not need to wait for a shower. I can shower immediately after my workout at home. At gyms, people often have to wait for a shower, and even worse-some people are nervous about showering in public.
4. I save gas money. Every time I drive to the gym, I am using gas. Gas costs money, so I'll have to add the cost of gas to the cost of my gym membership to find out the real cost of going to the gym.
5. I do not have to worry about parking anymore. In bigger cities, people have to pay for parking. Even if it costs $1/day to park your car each time you go to the gym, you are looking at almost $30/month worth of parking expenses.
6. People do not generally need a gym membership in order to stay in shape. Yes, having a variety of equipment to try and having access to knowledgeable gym staff is great, but at the same time a gym membership is a luxury. That being said, those who are serious about being fit will find other ways to get and stay in shape.
7. The "knowledgeable" gym staff are not always as knowledgeable as they claim to be. That is especially the case if they are paid on commission.
So, save the $70/month and instead put it towards something you want or need. How about that savings account? Do you want to treat yourself to nice new clothes? Well, cutting out the gym membership and finding free ways to get fit might be a good start.
I wish you all the best in your fitness endeavors and I hope that you achieve your goals! I will be posting an article on ways to stay fit without a gym, so stay tuned :)