December 22, 2014

Gym memberships in the UK soar after the festive period. It’s hardly surprising; expanding waistlines and buttons popping off jeans drive many of us to exercise and diet, in a bid to lose those unwanted pounds.

The gym certainly provides an attractive option to shedding the weight. It’s something about those rows of shining machines, the pumping music and the plentiful aerobic classes that proves to be too tempting to resist, regardless of the monthly membership fee.

Most people quit the gym within the first six months; January is the most popular month for joining, with 12% of all members signing up; but by June, 22% of those have left the gym, with another 20% quitting by the end of the year

Gym Membership – The Facts

However, despite our most ardent New Year’s Resolutions to go to the gym at least once a week, the sad truth, according to a report in the Telegraph is that many quit their efforts a mere six months later. Unsurprisingly, January is the most popular month for joining, with 12% of all members signing up; but by June, 22% of those have left the gym, with another 20% quitting by the end of the year.

Gym membership is big business, with millions of people in the country spending up to £105 per month on ‘getting fit’. However, in spite of this significant investment, as many as 15% visit less than once a week (even in the first few weeks of joining) and 3% only visit twice a year!

Ditch the Gym and Get Fit for Free

Of course, if you enjoy going to your local gym, there’s absolutely no reason why you should stop going. However, figures indicate that, as a general rule, it’s not the most reliable way of getting fit.

If you’re desperately seeking ways of slimming down after seasonal indulgence, there are plenty of effective ways you can get fit for free, according to the NHS website.

  1. Get walking  work-out- people often underestimate how effective walking can be when it comes to getting rid of excess fat. It’s easy to introduce walking into your lifestyle, with just a few simple changes. Instead of catching the bus into town, walk. Instead of taking the car to pick up the kids from school, walk. And instead of driving to your friend’s house…you guessed it!
  2. Use your stairs - it’s time to view your stairs not just as a way of getting to the bedroom, but as a great workout opportunity. If you’re keen on getting trim, run up and down the stairs each and every time you use them. At work, skip the lift and take the stairs instead. They’re also perfect for stretching limbs before you undertake any aerobic activity.
  3. Join a running group - it’s likely that there will be a running group in your area, which you can join for free. If you’re feeling self-conscious about running with strangers, ask a friend to join you, or practice on your own for a while until you build your stamina up. For extra incentive, sign up for a 10K charity run, or any other running event happening in your local community.
  4. Play with the children - children always seem to have limitless energy. If you have kids, take them to the park and play chase or a game of football. If you don’t have children, a dog makes a wonderful substitute!
  5. Look for free equipment - if you want to create the atmosphere of a gym in the comfort of your own home, look for free equipment on sites like Streetbank.com or Freecycle.org.

Getting Fit for Free

When it comes to getting fit for free, it takes just as much motivation as it does to go to the gym, but without the price tag, thankfully! Ask friends and family to support you, set a realistic challenge for yourself, and go for it. We wish you the very best of luck!


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