Gym memberships, trendy fitness classes and fashionable workout clothes can all come with a hefty price tag. Exercising is important for your health and overall well-being, but how much do you have to spend to keep fit? Here are some tips on where to save and where to spend:
Gym memberships - Unless you are sure to go to the gym frequently, annual memberships could actually be costly. Consider looking for fitness centers with shorter commitment terms.
Workout clothes - Wearing expensive fitness clothes won't help make you fitter. Opt for non-branded workout wear, visit factory outlets or wait for end-of-season sales to buy t-shirts, running shorts from your favorite brands.
Personal training - Don't purchase huge personal training packages. Avail of 5 to 10 sessions, learn as much as you can, and implement it when you exercise. Look up on available information from trainers online too.
Home gym equipment - Full home gyms and stationary bikes can be costly. Consider adjustable dumb bells, a resistance band and a stability ball to get started. You can do about a hundred exercises with these simple tools.
Outdoor activities - Many outdoor activities are free. You can jog, run or play basketball with your friends. And don't underestimate the benefit of daily walking.
Fitness tracker - Most fitness trackers monitor steps and sleep, but some also track your heart rate and breathing and integrate GPS. Being able to track your activity throughout the day can be hugely motivating.
Shoes - Splurge on quality shoes and make sure you buy them for the activity you're planning to use them for. Running shoes have more cushioning in the heel to absorb the impact. Cross trainers are the right choice for anything from boot camp to spinning classes.
Long-term investments - Invest in a piece of equipment, which you know you will use every day and for a long time. Be honest with yourself though, if you're only dabbling in a sport it's better to buy second-hand.
Rest & Recovery - Don’t overdo exercise. Find time to rest and let your body recover. Book regular appointments with your massage therapist or physiotherapist to help your body recover from exercise.
Charitable sporting events - Sign up for a charity run to give you a goal to work towards. The cost for registration is money well spent because it goes to a cause. Completing your first run with a big crowd of enthusiastic fundraisers can be very inspirational and may get you hooked on running.
At Manulife, we designed the ManulifeMOVE, a program that rewards customers - who choose to live an active lifestyle- with special discounts on their insurance premium. Click here to learn more.