A gym membership, in theory, is a good choice. Exercise is part of healthy lifestyle. Healthy lifestyles are desirable. Therefore, a gym membership is desirable, right? Except a gym membership isn’t the only way to make exercise a part of your daily routine. For some people, a home gym or a workout app is a better fit than paying a monthly membership fee. The question is whether ditching the gym is the right decision for you.
Tune into daytime television, and you’ll see commercials for complete home gyms—especially during resolution and “beach body” seasons. (Bowflex, anyone?) If you have a large home with with space for full-body weight training equipment, those big machines might be the right choice for you. But there’s a misconception that only people with a sprawling house have room to exercise. In reality, you can get a full-body workout in a studio apartment or a dorm room if you choose the right modalities and equipment.
According to the International Health, Racquet & Sportsclub Association, the average person spends $54 per month on a gym membership. In urban centers like New York, Chicago, DC, and San Francisco, that number might be as high as ten percent of a person’s monthly income. But fitness doesn’t have to cost a fortune. It’s easy to create a home gym you can use for years for less than the cost of your annual gym dues.