Certainly, there are several advantages to gym membership: It gives you the opportunity to work with personal trainers, access to exercise classes, and often, even a pool or racquetball courts. But just because you aren’t a card carrying member to the Raleigh YMCA or Gold’s Gym doesn’t mean you can’t stay in shape. How? Here are some simple ways to keep exercise as a part of your regular routine—no monthly fees required.
COMMUNITY RECREATION CENTERS
Most city parks will have tennis and basketball courts in addition to walking and biking trails. Some may even offer fitness classes or yoga at reduced rates.
Do you like to square dance? Maybe line dancing is more your style? How about learning the salsa? Many local organizations hold dances and events that feature music and fitness fun. Usually, brief lessons are given before the event, which has a minimal cost (sometimes as little as $5).
PLAY WITH YOUR KIDS
Spending an afternoon playing with your kids (or nieces or nephews) not only helps you get in shape, but also provides a good dose of fun. Consider touch football, soccer, or even just tossing a baseball around.
This is another great activity you can enjoy either alone or with your family. Many cities have greenways and bike trails that are safe and convenient. Check with your local chamber of commerce or city offices for maps and additional information. Looking for some great local venues? Try Lake Johnson Park or one of the many places along the Capital Area Greenway Trail System.
JOIN A TEAM
There are several local amateur teams you can join, and they don’t always cost an arm and a leg. Even better, speak with your employer about possibly organizing a company team. Even something as simple as bowling will get you out and moving.
Confess: These may be gathering dust. Time to get them off the shelf and into your DVD player. If you don’t have a workout video, there are plenty of great exercise videos online, either available through your cable company’s on demand service or on video sites such as YouTube.
AT-HOME EXERCISE EQUIPMENT
Please don’t tell us you’re using this to hang clothes! If your home treadmill or other equipment is covered with clutter, clear it out. Making it more convenient to access will encourage you to use it more often.
WALK YOUR DOG
Instead of just taking the dog outside when “nature calls,” incorporate this outdoor excursion with a brief run or walk around the block. Fido will have a blast and you’ll enjoy the company on your excursions.