I personally dislike the gym. I might use one if I'm staying at a hotel while on vacation or if I choose to use the guest pass on my mom's gym membership. I still would rather not go. I like working out at home or outside. I also like to take classes.
How do I work out on the cheap?
I take advantage of the bike paths along the lake to walk (and eventually run)
I've accumulated a collection of workout DVDs. Some I bought, but most I got as gifts or from my mom's coworker who no longer wanted them. Ask family and friends if they have any DVDs they might not use or like and ask if you can try it. Maybe set up a workout DVD swap. It would be like a book exchange. Let a friend borrow a DVD of yours that they'd like to try and you borrow one of theirs at the same time. After a specific period of time, swap back.
Pinterest! If you have a Pinterest account, I'm sure you've started a board that holds all the workouts you dream of doing. I say dream because when you pin it, you have a plan of actually doing it, but never get around to it. I know because I've been there. It's a great way to get free workout ideas and plans. You can even find ones that use your body weight so there's no reason to spend money on weights. If you have some exercise equipment at home, look up workouts for that equipment. Utilize what you have.
4. When new gyms open, a lot of times they have deals that they send out in the mail. I just got one for a new gym. It would be $12 a month. I don't know for how long, but it's an option if you prefer to workout in a gym.
5. Look to see if there's any free classes or workouts in your area. Many dance studios will have a free class or a free week for new students. If you decide you cannot afford the classes, don't register. There's a dance studio I'd love to attend. However, I cannot afford to go. I plan to apply for their work study program. I'd have to work eight hours a week in their office, but in exchange I'd get unlimited classes.
I live in Chicago. They hold free workouts in the park and a dancing in the park festival during the summer. It's a free workout and you can have some fun. Check out some clubs, like a salsa club. Some have dance studios come in to teach you moves. If you get on the email list for that studio, they'll send you promotion texts/emails for specific days at the clubs they'll be teaching at, which can get you in for $5 if you show the text/email by a certain time.
6. Find a friend to work out with. Even if it's virtually. Check in with that friend when you're frustrated, need motivation, when you completed your workout and when you accomplished a new feat. It helps keep you on track.
7. Cleaning. Yes, cleaning! Every time you clean something - vacuum, wash dishes - it burns calories. This is in no way a substitute for a workout. However, it adds extra calorie burn to your day. It is also how I make sure to keep my apartment clean on days when all I want to do is sit and watch a movie.
There is my list of how I keep my workouts free or cheap. Instead of spending money on a gym membership, I would personally save it to take a dance class and for the new clothes I'll need when I lose weight. I am determined to get in the best shape of my life. By the time I do, it'll be a habit and I'll be able to live my life to the fullest without thinking too much about diet and exercise.
"Keep Moving Forward"