A person’s physical health is one of the best investments in life someone can make.
Doing things like taking the time, effort and energy to stay fit and healthy can actually save you a lot of healthcare costs in the future, if you think about it. It has been proven that regular exercise increases longevity for most people, as well as reducing risks related to heart diseases such as high blood pressure and hypertension.
Exercise also has been proven to reduce stress and decrease obesity, as well as making a person have a feeling of increased well-being and positivity. The icing on this all is that exercise makes you look better as well.
Is a Gym Membership Worth It?
For most people, the easiest way to start getting in shape is to join a gym. This is because gyms are convenient, have all the tools and equipment you need to get in shape, as well as being able to provide trainers whenever you need advice on how to do this exercise thing.
Gyms aren’t free though, and some may require a substantial investment, which would make one think if getting a gym membership would be worth the money spent. The average gym membership costs between $50 to 100 a month, and this can vary depending on many factors such as amenities, location, and overall quality of the gym you’re enrolling in.
You must always remember though, that getting fit in a gym isn’t all about the money. It’ll take more than paying for a gym membership to get in shape. You’ll also have to invest your time and energy. If you’re lacking in either, that monthly membership fee is a complete waste.
Now that you’ve finally have that gym membership, the question of whether it’s worth the money you’re spending is now true. There are times no doubt wherein you might have had second thoughts that it might not be “worth it” at all.
Here are a few steps you could check for yourself to see if you are getting your money’s worth with your gym membership:
1. First, try to average your weekly visits.
If you’re like most people, you probably started strong in your gym membership but tapered off several months after. That’s perfectly fine – you might still be visiting the gym enough to make it worthwhile.
To find out for sure though, try to mark down your visits to the gym in a calendar. Do this for a couple of weeks to get a rough sense of how often you work out. After a month of this, average how many times have you visited the gym by how many days have actually passed.
Let’s say you went to the gym 5 times in two weeks. You would divide 5 gym visits by 2 weeks. 5 / 2 would amount to 2 and a half gym visits per week.
Now, you can find out how much you actually spend in the gym depending if you bought a monthly or an annual membership plan. For example, your monthly plan costs $60, divide that by 4 to get your weekly cost, which would be $15. Divide $15 further by your 2.5 gym visits per week to come up to $6 per visit. That’s not so bad at all if you think about it.
Depending on your budget, you can compare this with the rest of your other weekly and monthly costs to see if there indeed is space to account for how much you spend in the gym monthly or yearly.
2. Weekly or monthly deals
You should also keep your eyes open for weekly or monthly deals before you’ve purchased a membership, or when you’re about to renew your current one.
These deals are often time-limited, and expire after a certain date. These usually come in the form of quarterly, semi-annual, or annual deals though. It would be rare to find a monthly deal in this manner. The best time to go hunting for these would be during the off-peak seasons of the gym, where it would be trying its best to lure more customers to sign up. You can actually ask the gym representatives when these off-peak seasons are, and find out from them when the next round of promos or deals would probably be offered.
3. Gym Passes
Another way to get the best bang for your buck would be to purchase or subscribe to gym or fitness passes. These are provided by third party providers and encompass more than just one gym usually. An example of this type of deal would be ClassPass which provides basic memberships to many gyms in a specific area, as well as offers specific classes such as cycling, boxing, yoga, etc. depending on what type of pass you would be subscribing to. This
type of membership caters ideally to people on the go or to travelers.
There would be the major benefit of not being tied to one gym or location, and instead would just have to schedule the classes or gym time they would want to enroll in, no matter where they are. This is because the limitation of location is one major issue for many would-be potential gym goers, with gyms either too far from their homes or that they would be travelling a lot and would only be found at home for only a few months a year.
Besides the different types of memberships available, and having calculated just how much you are actually spending per visit, the next would be to then assess your gym and its facilities. You should start by surveying the studios, amenities, and gear. After all, there’s more to deciding whether your gym membership is “worth it” than just the price. Namely, are you satisfied with the equipment and amenities? Do they meet your exercise needs? Ideally, you’d have done this before signing up. Now’s your chance to reassess though.
These are some of the features you should look for:
- Having at least one big exercise studio.
- Having enough cardio machines for the number of regulars.
- Having free weights and a free weights area.
- Having gender-specific showers, changing rooms, and lockers
Any decent gym has most, if not all, of these features as part of their basic membership package.
A question you should ask yourself though is whether you are paying for any gym “extras,” such as equipment that you never use but still have to cover in your membership fees. These include pools, saunas, and a few hours of coaching or physical trainer sessions. Try to keep a running list of the amenities that you use and those that you don’t use. Doing so will help you see if you’re getting full use out of your membership.
Another important thing to take note of would be your gym’s location and hours. Try to assess the gym’s placement – is your gym close, easy to access, and convenient for you? Ease of access is another bonus and can keep you working out even when you’re not feeling motivated. Be sure to decide if you like the gym’s hours. Like location, your gym should also ideally suit your schedule. Whether the gym has limited daytime and night time hours or is open
24/7, you should be able to work out on your time and whenever is most convenient, otherwise your membership may not be worth the price.
You could even go as far as asking yourself, after all these, do you even need a gym at all? You could also pursue your fitness goals outside the gym. If you’re truly committed to getting fit, you might even want to forego the gym membership altogether. Sure, you can build a good home gym and save in the long run. A gym is nice and has lots of equipment and maybe some extra perks, but if you mostly just use the treadmill or free weights, you might be better off in the long run buying a nice gym setup for yourself and setting it up in the basement or spare
room of your house. You would have to factor in the costs of these types of home equipment though, which may range from a few hundred to several thousand dollars.
One thing you shouldn’t forget though if you’re planning to go this route is that there are many intangible things which one cannot simply experience or get when working out from one’s home. These include making friends in the gym, experiencing the group vibe when participating in classes, and the overall energy and drive present in the gym due to its group setting.
Rec Xpress: Your Go-To Gym
Worried about lock in contracts, joining fees, and going over budget with your membership?
Now in 6 prime locations, Rec Xpress still offers weekly $11 fees, with no lock in periods. Feel free to exercise any time of the day as we are open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. We have special online offer: sign up through our website and get 2 weeks absolutely free. You have access to all 6 locations so whenever you feel the need to have a boost of endorphins and get your blood pumping, simply visit any Rec Xpress branch closest to you.