Gym memberships vary. They vary on their price, what equipment they provide, services, programs, community etc. Gyms can be unique or they can be repetitive but at the end of the day, is a gym membership worth it?

Most importantly to most people, is it worth the money? Home gyms and home exercise routines are also options to look at. So what makes a gym a better option? Might a home gym be a better option? There are several answers to these questions, and answers also vary from person to person due to each individual’s lifestyle, financial situation, daily schedule and more.

Let’s take a look at some points that will help you determine whether a gym membership might be the right option for you.

1. Budget!

Point number 1 is your budget, because let’s be honest… quite a bit of money goes into gym memberships. Even if your monthly fee is small it definitely does add up! You can be surprised at the numbers that add up when you look at your expenses at the end of the year.

If you’re having to sacrifice important expenses like food, bills, or maybe even school (if you’re attending) to be part of a gym, you might need to reconsider your gym membership. Though it is very important to maintain an elevated level of activity throughout your week, in such cases prioritizing your expenses comes to be quite beneficial.

There are also plenty of other ways to maintain a high level of activity without a gym membership. Jogging, sprint exercises, freely playing a sport with friends, doing calisthenic movements at a local park, completing a High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) exercise at the park; these are all ways of maintaining a healthy level of activity without a gym membership. You can also consider home workouts if going out might not be an option.

For the one who wants something, no obstacle can stop them from achieving their goal. So don’t let a tight budget stop you from grinding, but don’t make unhealthy sacrifices with your priorities. Instead, find alternative ways of getting to your goal.

There does also come the situation of: what if the gym is very important to you and you consider it as a vital part of your life. Well, in such cases earning some extra cash scores high on your priority list. And it doesn’t necessarily have to be by getting more hours at your job. There are plenty of other ways to earn some extra cash.

Here are some examples of things you can do to earn some extra cash:

  • Donate Plasma
  • Grocery Shopping for People 
  • Paid Online Surveys 
  • Walk Dogs in Your Neighborhood 
  • Mow Lawns 
  • Become a Freelancer Proof Reader 

These are only a few examples of the almost endless ways that you can make income on the side. Some of these could even become full time jobs/businesses.

In finding the right amount of income or supplemental income you can then fit a gym membership in your budget; even if it comes down to being a pricier membership like a Crossfit membership or a F45 Gym membership.

2. Commitment

Being committed is a very important part of any gym membership. Even if you’re paying as little as $10 a month, if you aren’t committed then you’re losing money. Getting into shape or becoming a better athlete takes a lot more than simple desire, it requires action and dedication.

If you’re struggling with commitment then waiting off on that gym membership might be the better option. Start slower, completing some simple home workouts is a good way to start adding exercise to your routine until you get used to it enough to have enough time to dedicate for a gym.

Even if you can afford to lose something as little as $10 a month, you take on a big loss in the long run by not being committed. This is because that money that you could be investing in yourself is being thrown away while it could also be invested elsewhere earning you more money.

If commitment is becoming an issue in your case some solutions to this issue can be…

  • Set Baby-Step Goals
  • Create a Plan of Action
  • Schedule Your Life in a Time-Efficient Manner 

Regarding that last step, do not procrastinate on anything because it ultimately will almost always lead to no action at all. Make sure to stick to your schedule and if you need to wake up a little earlier in the day to make time for the gym, stick to it!

3. Community/Support

Some people love the community within their gym; many people find help and connections at their gym. These can be related to exercise or other topics or characteristics that you might have in common with someone at your gym. If community is an important factor in your life, looking into a gym can be a very beneficial plan of action to take.

Now, networking in a community may not be something important to you. If this is the case, then make sure that your gym membership isn’t compromising your budget and you are staying fully committed to your gym time.

That being said, do not only get a gym membership to use it as a simple social spot. Doing so is selfish and can become very irritating to other gym members if you’re in the way of their exercise routines.

Having connections at your gym can be very helpful for you at reaching your goals because of the help and support you can get from members or trainers there (or other networking reasons). BUT make sure that social activities don’t become the sole purpose of your membership.

4. What Can Your Membership Offer You?

What does the gym you’re looking at offer? Does it have all the right equipment that meet your standards? Are there coaches available? Are they helpful/supportive? Can you do your current workouts in a $0/month environment like a park or your home?

These are all questions your should be asking yourself when looking into getting a gym membership. Make sure you’re getting your money-worth at your gym and you aren’t lacking something that you feel you need. If you’re paying for a membership at a gym, you better expect for them to have everything you need.

Also, make sure that their opening hours coincide with your schedule. This may seem like a given but you’d be surprised at the amount of people who don’t think about this when signing up for a membership. They’ll end up signing a contract (if there is one) without thinking of how they’ll fit gym time into their schedule and end up stuck at a gym that they’re rarely able to go to.

You as A Person

Ultimately, in the end it depends on you if a gym membership is worth it or not. For some people it is definitely worth it, even an expensive membership can be worth it. If you’re an athlete paying for a membership at a pricier gym like a crossfit gym but it’s something you love, DO IT! Putting money in something you love is NOT an expense, it’s an investment in yourself.

If you’re passionate about your gym and you love it and are committed to it, don’t hesitate to get a membership. Of course, make sure you also incorporate the other tips given prior to this last point.

If you’re the type of person that can invest money into a home gym, don’t need a community and use your home gym wisely, go for that instead. It may be pricier at the beginning but in the long run, setting up a home gym is actually much more cost-efficient.

By incorporating the four tips given above into your decision on whether you will accept to take on a gym membership, you will be making a much more educated decision than if you simply get a gym membership without taking any thought into consideration. Happy gym-hunting!

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8 Responses

  1. Hi Misael. I liked the info and how you structured the info in this article. Well done.
    For me personally, it’s always good to have company when going to the gym because it’s boring going alone and talk to nobody. If I am alone, I will stay at home and do myself a workout.
    Of course the price of the memberships should be worth it and if you have lots of gyms to compare, that will be good. It’s essential to work out 5 days a week if possible and as you said, be consistent. There is nothing worse(at least for me) than being consistent for a few months and then drop the workout without a serious reason and let all the work going to waste.
    I have in my to-do list to buy a treadmill and do some running on my home at regular intervals.
    I’m glad I stumbled upon your article. It reminded of my teenage years when I used to work out a lot. But it’s never too late to start again so no problemo! Have a nice day.

    • Misael says:

      Hello Georgios,thank you! Yes, the social aspect of having someone as company at the gym is definitely a big plus when considering the community aspect of it, a lot of people enjoy having someone to talk to while at the gym. Also, I absolutely agree with your consistency point, having a gym membership and not being consistent can put you at a big loss, especially when you lose your progress from inconsistency. And yes, don’t hesitate to start again! No matter the age, becoming more athletic is never something that can be too late to start on! Good luck on your journey and thank you for your feedback!

  2. Strahinja says:

    I think it is good for people to purchase a membership in the gym, because it will force them to move and go work out. Just the fact that you are paying for something you do not use should motivate everyone to go at least once or twice a week. For someone who is not that fond of training – it is good enough.

    Love your website by the way.

    • Misael says:

      Good point! A lot of people are pushed by having the membership because they’ll think: “I don’t want to be wasting my money, might as well go so I don’t have a loss”. That’s only a select few though, a huge majority will have a membership and eventually forget about it and not attend the gym while their bank account is having automatic withdrawals from their gym. But you’re definitely not wrong it can be a huge possibility for a lot of people. Thank you so much for your feedback!

  3. Anne says:

    I currently have a membership to Planet Fitness. I used it daily and worked hard for 90 mins each day. Then I got hit with some kind of really bad muscle spasms along my back and left shoulder. That knocked me out for two months. Then went back again religiously for another month and somehow injured my foot. Ridiculous, I know! I’m a generally healthy and active person so these injuries are frustrating. Nonetheless, working my butt off at the gym does not result in any weight loss. I’m very careful about what I eat. Could be my age too, though.

    Anyway, I’m on the fence as to whether or not I should keep my membership. I’m leaning towards canceling it. I have a Peleton at home I use so may just stick with that.

    • Misael says:

      Awh man, I’m really sorry about those injuries. I know they can be a huge pain and several times it can even make it harder to come back to the gym. Also, I know a lot of people who go to the gym consistently and don’t lose weight (even though they may also be careful about what they eat). To people in such cercumstances, I usually tell them to try to increase the intensity on their workout. For example, instead of doing long cardio for 30 minutes and light weight workout;try to, instead, do cardio in interval sessions (like 30 second sprint, 1 minute walk for 15 to 20 minutes) then do an interval workout with weight training as well (like a superset circuit of 8 to 15 weighted pushups and situps with only 30 second rest intervals of rest in between for 20 minutes, for example). There are so many different kinds of high intensity interval training regiments that you can look into. And I’ll also be going over several of them on this website.

      On a different note, if you are already on your way to having more gym equipment at home it might be a good idea to consider that instead. But if having a gym membership is still useful, consider doing high intensity interval training like I described above!

      Thank you for your feedback! 🙂

  4. suzanne says:

    Hi Misael, and thanks for your great post!

    I’ve had a couple of memberships in my lifetime, but have definitely lost money on them. I guess I’m just not disciplined enough to use it like I should, lol.

    It turns out the best thing for me is to do it at home. We’ve owned exercycles and treadmills, but in the end, it’s the HIIT workouts that are the best for me.

    And lately, I haven’t been doing too much. You helped give me some motivation!

    Cheers,
    Suzanne

    • Misael says:

      Hello Suzanne, I’m glad I could do that for you! That’s the goal in this site, to help others on their personal fitness journey so hearing this is something that makes me very happy. I’m glad you’ve been able to see that your best journey has been a home gym. HIIT workouts are one of my favorite ways to exercise and it’s effecient to encorporate these routines at home so keep up the hard work! And remember that it’s never too late to start again. Good luck, and thank you so much for your feedback!

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