i want to quit the gym

(name that tv show)

in an effort to cut back some places financially, chris and i went through our bills around the start of the year to see where we could save some money. one of the areas we found that could potentially be “cuttable” was the gym membership. chris goes really often, i however rarely go, especially during marathon training. i do 99% of my runs outside, and although i always have great intentions of spin classes and crosstraining at the gym, i don’t really make it there that often. we also have a treadmill at home that i can use if i need to.

so i started thinking… my portion of the membership was $52 a month. a guest pass for a day at the gym is $10. if i was going to the gym, it would probably be at best once a week, and we could save $10 a month just by paying the guest pass once a week.

so i quit the gym.

i was kind of sad, it’s weird not having my own membership. i still really wanted to focus on my strength training during my training for this marathon. i tend to slack when i get into peak training, but that is also because i just want to be home and not go anywhere. so for my birthday chris got me a set of 5lb and 10lb dumbbells to add to the 15lb set i already have, and we already had a medicine ball and a mat. i also got the 30 day shred dvd. so now i have my own gym at home!

there are a few of my favorite exercises that i do miss since i don’t have a full gym set up, but a majority of my weight routine at the gym was with free weights anyways.

when i was in college i was very into weight training. i did a body part a day (chest, shoulders, back, arms and legs) for around 30-45 minutes each a day. i loved it, i love strength training. now i don’t have that kind of time (or energy really), but i still make sure to hit every body part on that list. i usually break my days up into upper body and lower body now and have condensed them down to do my favorites or ones i can do with dumbbells.

so far so good… every week i have done both upper and lower body workouts, as well as around 3 days of abs. since i did the 30 day shred dvd on tuesday night, i did my lower body workout tonight, along with some upper body that i didn’t really hit on tuesday. i also did some abs at the end. i put dinner in before i started, turned on the new, put each dog on the treadmill, put a load of laundry in, and before i knew it i was done! it’s really a great way to get in my strength training, while still being at home and feeling productive with my house chores.

friday morning is an easy 6 miler (well 5.25 since i went over on wednesday), then saturday i have 16 miles scheduled! looks like the rain won’t be arriving until saturday evening, so it should be another great california day to run :)

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56 Responses to i want to quit the gym

  1. Mica February 19, 2009 at 8:27 pm #

    It sounds like you’re all set to be strong without the gym! You’re such an inspiration, lady!

  2. ShirleyPerly February 19, 2009 at 8:43 pm #

    If it wasn’t for the pool, I’d not really need my gym membership. Sounds like you have everything you really need at home already and thanks for cluing me in on that Shred video!

  3. audgepodge February 19, 2009 at 8:47 pm #

    Is it from “Friends”?

  4. MissAllycat February 19, 2009 at 8:59 pm #

    I love that your dogs run on treadmills. :)

  5. Billy Burger February 19, 2009 at 9:00 pm #

    +1 on “Friends”.

    I underwent a similar dilemma Aron…had a hard time justifying paying $45/month for going once – twice max per week to my gym.

    Talked to the guy and negotiated paying for the full year in advance ($200/12).

  6. A Toronto girl out West February 19, 2009 at 9:06 pm #

    I’m TOTALLY thinking of quitting the gym too!

    I only really use free weights and I can do those at home. As for cardio I think I can get that in on my own as well. To be honest though the only thing keeping me in the gym right now is the treadmill. I don’t always love to run outside!

  7. Nicole February 19, 2009 at 10:01 pm #

    I need to be as motivated as you! Awesome job! :) Good Luck on the 16 miler & i love that you put your dogs on the treadmill.. that cracks me up! I wonder if my dog would do it! HAHA

  8. foodsthatfit February 19, 2009 at 10:10 pm #

    I have spurts where I use the gym all the time and then for months, esp. when the weather is nice, I won’t use it at all. Sounds like a good choice ,esp. since you have some great home gym equip!

  9. Jo Lynn February 19, 2009 at 10:37 pm #

    Good decision quitting the gym. When you wake up at 5:00 a.m., what time do you go to bed the night before?

  10. Joe February 19, 2009 at 11:35 pm #

    I thought about quitting the gym too, but I have an unbelievable monthly rate of $8/month. I prepaid 2 years in advance at L.A. Fitness and the renewal was only $108/13 months. I figure if I only go 10 times during the year, I’ve paid for my membership.

  11. D10 February 20, 2009 at 4:46 am #

    I smile everytime I think of your dogs running on the treadmill!

    I think it is always good to evaluate your financial situation and see where you can cut money. Just think $10 each month over a year will buy you a new pair of sneakers!

  12. Abby February 20, 2009 at 4:48 am #

    Looks like it’s going around!

    I’m going to have to start building my home gym.

  13. Petraruns February 20, 2009 at 5:14 am #

    I quite the gym last year and am now trying to build up my equipment and routine at home – which is going fine, I have to say. Am very interested in your shred (?) dvd? Do tell more..

  14. runjen February 20, 2009 at 5:18 am #

    Sounds like you have everything you need! I bought that 30 day shred dvd and love it. It’s amazing how much you can pack into those 20 minutes!

  15. Clare February 20, 2009 at 5:18 am #

    dogs on treadmills…too funny! i’m trying to do more weights at home too to maximize my gym time since having a baby. it’s good, when i remember!

  16. Melanie February 20, 2009 at 5:19 am #

    i have a lot of stuff at home too, but not a treadmill. having to go through Canadian winters, having a gym available is still kinda nice when I can’t run outside… but i think you did the right thing for you! Great job! Have a great run and weekend!

  17. runjen February 20, 2009 at 5:19 am #

    Sounds like you have everything you need! I bought that 30 day shred dvd and love it. It’s amazing how much you can pack into those 20 minutes!

  18. Amy February 20, 2009 at 5:32 am #

    That’s great you can do lots of lifts at home. I joined the gym only for the winter…once it’s nice out, I’m outta there! I’ll look forward to reading more about your at-home workouts. I think if I had my own little gym at home, I’d get something to use as a step…but I guess the basement stairs could work, too.

  19. Running and living February 20, 2009 at 5:32 am #

    Your home gym is much better…plus you have your doggies to keep you compmany. How many miles are they logging these days and what marathon are they training for?

  20. Denise February 20, 2009 at 5:38 am #

    Financially it sounds like it was a smart move. You can still do your strength training at home. Get some resistant bands, free weight and a stability ball and you’re all set!!

  21. aron February 20, 2009 at 5:55 am #

    @audrey – yesss friends :)

    @D10 – well acutally i forgot to mention i haven’t used the guest pass yet so really $52 a month is in my pocket :)

    @petra – jillian michaels 30 day shred dvd! its a 20 minute workout with 3 circuits of 3 min strength, 2 min cardio and 1 min abs. i really like it!

    @amy – i use my fireplace as a step for calves and tricep dips

  22. E February 20, 2009 at 6:13 am #

    i need to quit the gym! we do 99% of our runs outside, and have equipment at home for strength training, so i think we should quit spending $50 a month too! i liked hearing about your strength training routine- you’re inspiring me. i’m such a slacker when it comes to that.

  23. J February 20, 2009 at 6:37 am #

    Good luck with the 16 miler and have a great weekend!

  24. Heather February 20, 2009 at 6:38 am #

    Sounds like a good routine! We don’t have a gym around our area, so it’s been a long time since I’ve had a gym membership. The 30 day shred has renewed my strength trianing. Good luck with the 16 miler!

  25. Vava February 20, 2009 at 6:44 am #

    Pushups and situps, in large numbers, will be your best friend I think. After completing the 10 push up challenge I was amazed at how much it worked out my whole upper body. Add to that sit ups (as well as chin ups) and I too let the gym membership go.

    It seems like people are cutting back everywhere these days. I was considering getting a smartphone, but now will not given that those things cost more than a gym membership every month. Oh well, at least running is free (if we forget the gear and race fees, etc.).

    Continued success!

  26. Marcy February 20, 2009 at 7:28 am #

    Who needs a gym when you live in Cali?! Dang girl! I don’t blame you ;-)

  27. raulgonemobile February 20, 2009 at 7:38 am #

    I don’t blame you.. I’ve been going on a month by month basis, figuring that once the snow melts, I’m outta there. I’ll miss the pool, but I really haven’t been using it that much.

  28. Lacey Nicole February 20, 2009 at 7:46 am #

    oooh you’re doing 16? i have a “step back” week so only 11 miles :) do you ever scale back? for me it is sort of a relief :) but i’m having a hard time with going longer and longer! it’s so hard!!! hehehe… i’m thinking “distance” is not my “thing” :) bad excuse, but i’m gonna keep trying!!!! good luck withe 16. i really want to try the 30-day shred!!!! is it user friendly???

  29. Roisin February 20, 2009 at 7:47 am #

    It’s funny because that’s sooo what I used to do in college too, before I started running. I must admit, it’s nice to have access to the strength training stuff, but it sounds like you’ve got it together with the stuff you have at home! And you’re saving the money, which is really important right now!

  30. Natalie D February 20, 2009 at 7:59 am #

    I think i need to quit too. I just like the xtraining and yoga

  31. BeachRunner February 20, 2009 at 8:02 am #

    Good post. Weight training is great. But quitting the gym was a very smart move.

  32. lauren February 20, 2009 at 8:05 am #

    I did the same thing last year. Quit the gym because i was running outside so much and not using it. I just joined up again and use it so much in the cold weather. I know it will be hard to go when it is nice outside though. I wish they had a winter package from Dec – march or something…that would be perfect for me…

  33. Jess February 20, 2009 at 8:17 am #

    That’s the beauty of being a runner. You don’t necessarily need the gym.

  34. Cindy February 20, 2009 at 8:18 am #

    good move. that’s 52 more dollars to put towards something more fun!

  35. Jamie February 20, 2009 at 8:23 am #

    You’ll be fine without the gym. Sounds like you’re doing great on the strength/cross-training at home. Have a great weekend!

  36. tfh February 20, 2009 at 8:41 am #

    I have a hard time working out at home just because by the time I get there, I really feel like just relaxing. But you’re right, a great strength workout can fit in between chores and ultimately be so convenient. The one thing I love that my gym has, but I don’t at home, is a stability ball. I think it’s the one thing I’d have to get if I “quit” it (that and a foam roller). Enjoy your sixteen miler! Send me some of your energy AND sunshine. ;)

  37. Blyfinn February 20, 2009 at 8:48 am #

    My wife and I did the same thing with our gym membership. She rarely goes so she just pays the guest past and saves us money. Good luck with the 16 miler. I have 15 on Sunday.

  38. Tara February 20, 2009 at 8:58 am #

    I can’t quit the gym!!!! lol but sometimes I do wish I had more weights at home for the times when I need to do things around the house.

    Nice job on getting in all your runs and weight training!!!!

    I need you to teach me some lower body workouts :)

  39. Alisa February 20, 2009 at 9:17 am #


    I wanna quit the bank!

    Luckily, my Dad still pays for my membership, he has some sweet deal with 24HR that he got when they started in the 80′s. All he askes in return is that I go with him when I’m home. It’s a win-win!

    I’m trying to work on doing more weights, I used to be so diligent! I need the gym for the pool (and the treadmill, as it’s easier to do my mid-week runs there and shower before work).

    Good job though, quitting is hard!

  40. Janice {Run Far} February 20, 2009 at 9:55 am #

    I dont have any equipment at home cause I cant get it done here, making it to the gym is my outlet, (I am a stay at home mom) and I am better about getting the workout done if I go to the gym…. quitting the gym would be weird.

  41. Chic Runner February 20, 2009 at 10:15 am #

    Great idea aron. I have a hard time getting to the gym during training as well.

    I have a 16 miler this weekend too. Good times. :)

  42. SJ Goody February 20, 2009 at 10:25 am #

    You’ll be fine without the gym! There are so many things you can do at home to strength train! :)

  43. lifestudent February 20, 2009 at 10:55 am #

    I’m in the opposite boat! I need to JOIN the gym. To bad we couldnt have transferred memberships :)

  44. X-Country2 February 20, 2009 at 11:43 am #

    I’m the same way about running outside most of the time. I occasionally think about a gym just for the pool, but I know I won’t use it enough to justify the cost.

  45. Jess February 20, 2009 at 12:18 pm #

    Good decision. If I could afford my own elliptical trainer for occasional cross-training, I would totally quit the gym. Dumbbells can take you far.

  46. RunToFinish February 20, 2009 at 12:42 pm #

    what a great way to look at it, I hope some others can learn from you!!

    personally I love doing weights and watching tv…cause otherwise i’m not that interested in my weights…though I know they have to be doing something for me. ;)

  47. Runner Leana February 20, 2009 at 1:38 pm #

    Wiat, you have dogs that run on a treadmill? Mine just putter around and sleep! Impressive! It is amazing what you can do with a good set of free weights at home. I struggled with whether I wanted to join the Y or not, and ultimately I went for it. But I really only use it for the pool, although it did come in handy to get in some runs on some really cold days!

  48. Lisa Slow-n-Steady February 20, 2009 at 1:44 pm #

    sounds like a good situation for you.

    i use the ‘free’ gym at work unless i need a pool, then i have to have a membership to a gym.

    but i couldn’t go without. i’m not motivated to as much at home as i do at the gym.

  49. Scheri February 20, 2009 at 3:31 pm #

    You must have excellent will power to get it done at home. I admire that! I do the best if I go to a class for strength training.

  50. lindsay February 20, 2009 at 4:13 pm #

    i feel you on the gym fees! you are a true role model girl, regular ice baths AND at-home weight training. i can barely make myself do pushups and squats/lunges once a month!

  51. Marlene February 20, 2009 at 6:05 pm #

    Sounds like you’re all set without the gym membership. Great job sticking with your strength training. I am so unmotivated to do it at home. :S

    Have fun with your 16-miler… and send some of that weather up here if you can. ;)

  52. Marathon Maritza February 20, 2009 at 6:58 pm #

    Definitely a good, money-saving move to get rid of the membership, especially with the motivation you have right now to continue your weight training at home! :) I think you’ll be okay and as you said, you can always pay for a day pass if you really want to go.

    Can’t wait to see ya tomorrow!

  53. Shannon February 21, 2009 at 3:13 pm #

    There are tons of exercises you can do for strength training, using your own body weight & dumbbells. Sounds like you made a "sound" decision financially.

  54. I Run for Fun February 21, 2009 at 8:07 pm #

    Now that I’ve started running again, I hardly go to the gym too. Wise decision.

  55. Laurel February 22, 2009 at 5:05 pm #

    Sounds like a smart move. Is there a Y around where you live? If you decided to rejoin a gym, this may be a good, inexpensive option.


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