BY: Lisa Payne

September 10, 2018

Working Out on a Budget: 6 Ways to Save

When did getting fit get so expensive? Between box gyms, yoga and spin studios, exercise on a budget is tough. Here’s how to do it.

exercise on a budget

You’ve got your favorite yoga classes, your spin studio and maybe even a home base gym membership. How did getting into shape get this expensive?

With so many fitness options out there we’d love to try, fitness spending has gotten out of control. According a survey done by, the average American adult spends $155 per month on health and fitness (1). This equals an average of $112,000 spent in a lifetime!

However expensive fitness has gotten, avoiding exercise can also cost more by way of medical bills later in life. So how can you keep an exercise program you like without breaking the bank?

Here are six ways to exercise on a budget:

Budget Check

Apps like Acorns or Mint make tabulating monthly expenses even simpler. Look at cutting down on expenses like coffee, gas, parking, ride-sharing services and anything else that could easily be eliminated or substituted with cheaper options.

exercise on a budget

Ask HR

Whether you work for a Fortune 500 company or startup, many companies offer wellness money to encourage employees to stay healthy. Not sure of your company’s policies? Ask human resources. Companies often pay anywhere from $100  to $1,000 in annual fitness memberships.


Need an inexpensive gym membership? Invest during the gym’s low-peak times of the year. Avoid winter and right after New Year’s, when gym membership is higher. Sign up mid-summer when people are out and about, and membership is lower.

Inexpensive Fitness Equipment

Other than Amazon and eBay, find low cost used or overstocked fitness equipment at second hand fitness stores like 2nd Wind Exercise, 2nd Round Fitness and Fitness Factory. Also, buy equipment you can use for multiple exercises.

exercise on a budget


Many of the almost 2 billion YouTube viewers go there for free workouts like 10-minute cardio blasts, whole-body strength moves, yoga and kickboxing. Plus, there are so many options you’ll never get bored!

Get Social

Follow fitness influencers who showcase their workouts on social media. Many of your favorite fitness instructors use social media to teach their go-to exercise moves for inspiration. Popular influencers to follow are yogi Rachel Brathen, Pilates guru Casey Ho and Whole30’s Melissa Hartwig.

Staying healthy is a major priority and investment. Cut back on extra expenses, stay motivated with your favorite fitness gurus and seek out free or low-cost memberships and fitness equipment. Where there’s a will, there’s a way!

Lisa Payne is a freelance writer and editor specializing in health, fitness, and travel. She stems from a background in television, playwriting, and personal training. Always on the go, follow her on social media or check out her website at







(1) “How Much Do Americans Spend On Health & Fitness? | Survey Results Revealed.” Myprotein US, Myprotein US, 2 May 2018,

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