Monday, January 31, 2011

One Mom's Tip: Exercise on a Budget

I always speed walk with a huge grin on my face.*

I hate to pay for something I can get for free. Which is why I've had a hard time justifying a gym membership. Okay, I'm not being completely honest. The real reason I don't have a gym membership is that we have lots of other places to put our money besides a gym membership.

But seriously, why pay for something you can get for free?

How do I get my gym workout without the gym membership? I open the door and step outside. I get a cardio workout by speed walking or jogging. I do a little warm up stretching before and cool down stretching after and the best part is that I didn't have to spend time driving somewhere before I could start exercising. If I walk/run for 45 minutes, I'm done and back home after 45 minutes. No commute time.

If I want a little strength training I just pop in my 30 Day Shred DVD and grab my hand weights. It's a 20 minute workout that really delivers. I did pay for the DVD, so I guess that isn't actually free. And I paid for the hand weights too. But those were both one time purchases that I've continued to use for over a year.

You could check out other exercise DVDs from the library, download free walking mixes from iTunes, or get ideas for interval training from online articles. All free, free, free. 

For a few dollars, you could invest in an exercise band. It is small, versatile and compact (unlike that stupid, stupid exercise ball we have that no one ever uses, yet takes up an entire corner of our guest room), and watch some youtube videos on how to use them. 

Do you have any tips for free or low cost work outs?

*Actually, this is true when I listen to the Wait, Wait, Don't Tell Me NPR podcast on my walk (free download from iTunes).

9 comments:

Emily Laing said...

I bought a treadmill on Craigslist. I love walking outside and enjoyed walking with friends when I lived in Sherwood. But I am not a fan of the the cold or wet, so when I want to work out, I have no excuses anymore. The treadmill faces the tv. It is always there. And I have hand weights and the Jillian Michaels CD too. Of course it isn't free, but I don't have to get into a car or find childcare or even put on clean clothes...I could do it in my pajamas if I want.

megan said...

A personal trainer friend who sends you workouts via email...it's the best. Yes you need weights and even the spacing taking ball but it is great. I must confess I love the gym...5 a.m. baby! It works for me.

Natalie said...

I play Wii Just Dance 2 with my kids. If you actually TRY to dance well, it's a great workout (if you can stand the songs they pick). But, I confess, I also have a community gym membership (cheaper than a "name-brand" place)so that I can swim and play racquetball, which I love.

Marah said...

Clogging lessons at the 206th building on MOndays at 10:30. It's free except for the clogging shoes, which half the class (including me) doesn't have (we dance in our socks). The little kids run around with trucks and balls, and it's a good workout. I just started!

Afton said...

Emily, I hate the cold and wet too, so for Jan and maybe Feb, I got a month pass at the rec center's indoor track for $25. I actually look forward to going each morning.

Afton said...

Marah! That is awesome. Way to go. I can't wait to come to your first performance.

Betty Grace said...

I want some ideas of work out videos. Strength training- something I can do without any foot impact (still having post-surgery foot pain so even standing for a period of time hurts). Any ideas? I'm going nuts and my pants don't fit. I need to exercise.

Afton said...

Anyone have a suggestion for Betsy? I have only done 30 day Shred and it combines strength, cardio and ab training. The cardio does jumping jacks, and other jumping things that might bother your feet, but you can do lower impact. I would check out the resistance bands. I had a link in my post to a youtube video with lots of different exercises demonstrated. It's really versatile. Of course that doesn't really get the heart rate going...

Senia said...

You can justify the ball purchase and sleep easy tonight... I did a few back stretches one night on that exercise ball that takes up a corner of your guest bedroom. Such a lovely accomodation!