Never Pay For Exercise Again!

  • “Buns of Steal”

    Julia Neyman, a law student at Columbia University, is chronicling her year of free exercise on a blog called Buns of Steal. The idea is simple: go to gyms without paying. What’s her deal? And what can you learn from her? Photo Credit: Buns of Steal
    Free tips
  • Free tips

    “I'm trying to go a year, working out 4-5 times a week, without ever paying for a workout: relying solely on free classes, free promo passes, guest passes and the like. I'm not looking for anything in particular, and I never meant for this to get as much media attention as it has. I love to write and I love to work out, so I was looking for a fun way to explore the city, change up my workouts and get a creative writing outlet, all while staying on a student budget. It seems like people like the content though: the blog got about 6,500 hits yesterday, and I'm getting emails from gyms and readers all over the city telling me about free promos and fun workout options,” Neyman explained to MainStreet. But what if you aren’t her? Doesn’t matter; she has 10 tips you can use today to get your workout on, without paying a dime. You'll save big bucks. Click Next to read them. Photo Credit: Getty Images
    #1: Keep it simple, run
  • #1: Keep it simple, run

    “Go for a run outside: fun, easy, accessible and affordable. No advance planning needed. If you want to spice it up, sprint up the hills, do sets of 100 hops up and down park benches or run the bleachers at your local high school,” Neyman says. Photo Credit: Getty Images
    #2: Use the playground
  • #2: Use the playground

    “Take advantage of the neighborhood playground: Monkey bars are great for pull-ups, blacktops are full of markings you can use for line drills (think soccer camp), and all the raised surfaces of slides, bars and swings allow you to get creative in working with your body weight,” she suggests. Photo Credit: Getty Images
    #3: Neighborhood recreation centers
  • #3: Neighborhood recreation centers

    “Check out your neighborhood recreation center (like the JCC or the YMCA). Chances are, they offer free fitness classes at least once a week,” she offers. And if it’s not free, keep looking until you find a center that offers such a course. Photo Credit: Getty Images
    #4: Look to new places
  • #4: Look to new places

    “Look out for newly opened facilities (especially gyms and yoga studios). Many will offer free workouts to drum up publicity,” Neyman advises. Makes perfect sense. Keep an eye out for that GRAND OPENING banner. Photo Credit: Getty Images
    #5: Your creepy buddy Craig, and his list
  • #5: Your creepy buddy Craig, and his list

    “Check Craigslist for workout buddies who have access to gyms: many people have the facilities to stay in shape, but not the motivation. It’s a win-win: you get free access to their facility, and they get someone to keep them accountable on workouts,” she suggests. Just be safe and very selective in choosing that workout buddy. Craigslist is teeming with weirdos – some of them could be dangerous. Photo Credit: Getty Images
    #6: Use the interwebs, do your research
  • #6: Use the interwebs, do your research

    “Actually, just check Craigslist in general. Or Google for that matter. Type in ‘free’ and ‘workout’ or ‘free’ and ‘gym’ and you’ll be shocked by how many hits you get,” she adds. Another thing you can try is posting to your Facebook status, asking your friends if their gym has a guest pass program or if their gym is doing any free promos. Do the same on Twitter. Work those social media muscles. Photo Credit: Ed Yourdon
    #7: Work-study arrangements
  • #7: Work-study arrangements

    “Ask your local gym, dojo or yoga studio for a work-study arrangement. Many places will let you practice for free if you help flyer, clean up and stock towels. Think of it as the fitness equivalent of working for your meal,” she suggests. Seems fair to me. Photo Credit: a4gpa
    #8: Coach
  • #8: Coach

    “If there’s a sport you’re particularly good at, sign up to coach a youth league. You’ll get plenty of exercise running around after the youngsters, plus you’ll likely get some access to the facilities after they go home for the night,” Neyman says. Yes. Use the children for free gym space after they leave. Photo Credit: Getty Images
    #9: Stay at the office
  • #9: Stay at the office

    “See if your office building has a workout facility. Most do. Sure, they aren’t fancy but a few treadmills and some weights is really all you need,” she says. But what if you don’t like to work out in front of your co-workers? Use the body tarp, of course! Photo Credit: adria.richards
    #10: Be proactive throughout the day
  • #10: Be proactive throughout the day

    “Find ways to be more active in your everyday life, even if you work at an office and drive to work: offer to shovel your neighbor’s snow; walk to the grocery store; take the stairs instead of the elevator; On a hot summer weekend, go for a swim at your neighborhood pool or play tennis at the neighborhood courts instead of catching a movie,” is her final suggestion for those of you looking to exercise for free. Basically, get off your butt, and start burning those excess calories. You don’t need an expensive Crunch or David Barton Gym membership—even in the lamest of gyms, an elliptical or stationary bike in the corner will do the trick. Photo Credit: lululemon athletica
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