Exercising in a Recession

People everywhere are starting to feel the crunch of the recession. If you haven’t felt it already, that doesn’t mean you won’t. Some economists think our financial troubles have the capacity to get quite a great deal worse before they get any better. But that’s enough about that, you didn’t come here to read about economics.

The cost of exercising can vary greatly. In a time like this, it is obviously ideal to spend as little as reasonably possible on exercise. You may have to make some cuts to your exercise costs and look elsewhere for more affordable means of staying in shape.

Cuts to Make

Personal trainers

Personal trainers are perhaps the highest form of discretionary spending in the exercise world. They usually run between $50-$100 for an hour-long session. The trainers don’t typically keep all of this money; they’re required to throw a large chunk to the gym they service in. Regardless, personal trainers are pretty unnecessary for most exercise enthusiasts and are an easy budget cut.

Unused gym memberships

Depending on the gym, it costs between $25-$80 a month to maintain membership. For people who visit their gyms twice a week or more, this cost is pretty justifiable. However, if you only go to the gym a couple of times per month, it could be time to lose the membership. There are plenty of cheaper ways for you to get your exercise (see below).

Expensive supplements

Some fitness supplements (like protein powders) are very good value. However, others, like creatine or caffeine pills are pretty expensive, especially relative to their benefit.

Ways to Save


Walking or jogging outdoors is about as cheap as exercising can be. The main cost is just keeping new a pair of quality running shoes on your feet every few months. Beyond that, you can’t get much more recession-proof than going for a jog.

Use body-weight

Some of the fittest athletes in the world hardly ever touch a weight. They “lift weights” just by using their own body weight. There are an endless number of ways to tone muscle without needing to use weights. Push-ups, sit-ups, pull-ups, lunges, and dips are just a few examples of ways to keep a muscular physique. Utilizing these methods can help end the need for a pricey gym membership.

Exercise at work

Many workplaces have small fitness rooms that are available for their employees to use. In a more prosperous economy, it’s easy to overlook these smaller facilities in favor of a membership to a large gym. However, give a second glance to the fitness room at your workplace. They usually come equipped with a few treadmills and some basic weight machines. With a little creativity, you might realize you don’t need that gym membership after all!