I am here to set the record straight. You do NOT need a gym membership. BUT you do need to be physically active. Don’t get me wrong, the gym is a great place to exercise. However, I live in the beautiful state of Colorado where the outdoors bring plenty of physical activities that are quite enjoyable. The weather brings 300 days of sunshine and it is great to be exercising outside because plenty of others are, too. You may not live in an area where it is feasible to do outside activities, but that does NOT excuse you. In fact, if you have another excuse loaded in your pocket, read on.
Let’s talk about what is really stopping you from exercising…
“I don’t have time.”
I get it. You have a full-time job, you have to pick up the kids from school and carpool them to their after-school activities. Meanwhile, you are also trying to make it home to make dinner for your husband and family, and then ‘catch up’ on work when everybody is in bed. Sound familiar? But wait a second, you only have 24 hours, 7 days a week, and so do I.
It’s not time that is the problem, it’s your priorities. You have priorities; you just choose which ones are more important. In the previous paragraph, nowhere did I describe who takes care of you. It’s the typical scenario that you are living. If you don’t make time to take care of yourself then, who will? So essentially there is time. You just have to decide what’s important first and will put exercise when you choose to make it a priority. (Believe me, you will be rewarded when you figure this out).
“The gym membership is too expensive, and I don’t like the treadmill anyways.”
Great! I don’t like the treadmill either. In fact, I cringe when I see someone on the treadmill and wonder how long their knees are going to last if they keep it up. Is it really because the gym membership is expensive, or is it that you just don’t like to exercise around a lot of people? Maybe you don’t like waiting for a machine, or prefer to exercise in a different way?
There are a million ways to exercise, and just because your friends may have gym memberships, does not mean you have to join them. But you need to find out what ‘moves’ you, and what you find is fun while burning calories at the same time. You don’t have to go to the gym, but you do have access to your own home, the park, outside your workplace, the mall, and the list goes on and on.
“I have bad knees or bad back, or a bad (insert body part here).”
At our Med-Fit clinic, we have seen all kinds of orthopedic conditions, and having our personal fitness trainer is critical to teaching you exercises in spite of the limitations you have. This is the time to get help. Find a personal trainer in your area who understands that you can’t “do it all” but want to exercise without hurting yourself. If you find it challenging to find a personal trainer you trust, the next best thing is water. Exercising in the water will take the weight off your joints so that you can move without putting a lot of strain on those ailing body parts.
So now that we got some of our top excuses out of the way, let’s talk about what’s more important — the solution! Stay tuned to Part 2 of the series, how to exercise without a gym membership.
If you want to talk more about this, let’s have a quick chat together.
Dr. Angela Tran