You could walk, jog, or run. You could lift canned goods instead of weights (I did this for years before getting a small weight set.) You could follow along with free videos on YouTube.
But here's why I think joining a gym is a perfectly practical option:
- Feel the burn. You will feel the burn in your muscles and in your wallet. When you pay for something, it hurts a little if it goes to waste so you are more likely to stick with an exercise routine.
- Personalized program. Many gyms upon joining, will offer a few free sessions with their in house trainers to get you started and on your way. That way you can have exercises that are tailored to the way you want to shape up.
- Accountability. You begin to see regulars at the gym and when you haven't been in a while, they'll ask about you.
- Family Time. We have chosen to go as a family to work out since Diva is old enough to participate at the gym with adult supervision (read: within our line of sight.) Diva is quite happy read on the treadmill (how does she do that?) for an hour or so while Engineer and I circuit train. It models a healthy lifestyle and one we hope she will continue to enjoy as she gets older.
- More options. In our gym, all of the classes, equipment, and swimming is included in the membership. It is far less expensive for me to pay a gym membership than to maintain a pool and buy (and house) several substantial exercise machines.
- Discounts. Most gyms have discounts for families or senior citizens or city workers, etc. Ask about any offers that they may have. Call around and see if you can get a better price at a different facility.
- Advice. There will be professional trainers and often even rehabilitation therapists around from whom you could receive advice...about your work-out...advice about your work-out. They probably won't give you advice on your love life, financial woes, etc.
Also, make sure to find out any other amenities available at your local gym. Our gym has free coffee and free childcare until 8pm - which makes a lot of people feel like there is definitely gain in their pain.
This is part of WFMW.