5 Ways to Workout Sans Gym

Gym memberships are great, but they can also be expensive. Even though I love working out in the gym, I canceled my gym membership last winter because I just didn’t feel like I was using it enough for the cost. Conversely, I also have friends who hate the gym and feel like “hamsters on a wheel.” Whatever the reason, you may or may not have a gym membership, but working out in the gym isn’t the only way to break a sweat! Here are five ways you can get a great workout in, sans gym.

YouTube workouts

YouTube has thousands of workouts literally available at your fingertips. The trick is knowing which ones are worth your while.

A girlfriend turned me on to “my boy” Millionaire Hoy. His workouts are challenging and efficient and will have you dripping in no time. He posts new workouts every week so you never get bored and he is incredibly funny throughout the sweat sessions.

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For zumba lovers, try this 4 minute dance routine.

For those into hip-hop dancing, try this dance routine, which takes you through step-by-step choreography.

Yogis- Yoga with Adriene. She has over 1 million subscribers to her channel.

Going to the park

A simple jog never hurt nobody, and it’s better and more challenging than running on a treadmill. Take it up a notch by going to a nearby park. Jogging around the park will provide you with great scenery and more challenging terrain.

Parks are also great places to do sprints, lunges, squats, pull-ups (on the monkey bars), and more… In my neighborhood there is actually an “outdoor recreation jungle gym” that shows you how to use the equipment.

Several parks in the Raleigh-Durham area also have canoe and kayak rentals. Both provide a great upper arm workout and beautiful scenery. If you live in the RDU area check out Lake Johnson. Kayak rentals are just $5 an hour.

Look up your local parks and recreation website to see what options your city provides and don’t be afraid to get creative!

Playing a sport

One my favorite ways to get some cardio (and some serious laughs in) is to play tennis. I’m no good, so chasing all the balls I miss gets my heart racing. (Not the point of the game, but cardiovascular efficient). I’m terrible, but I love it because I feel like I’m getting exercise, while also learning a new skill.

If you’re super athletic and want to play team sports competitively, more power to you. But you don’t have to be an all-star to hit the courts/fields- whether to shoot a basket, kick around a soccer ball, or play a summer game of baseball a la Sandlot.

At home workouts

These kind of go along with YouTube workouts, but if you want to work more independently while pumping up your tunes, you can hop on the “at home workout” train.

One WILDLY popular at-home fitness package is by Australian workout guru Kayla Itsines, creator of her “bikini body guide.” You pay for a digital download of her fitness and nutrition program, but can repeat the entire program again and again. It transitions with you as you get stronger. You can do the workouts from the comfort of your own home (or a gym). She has 4.6 million followers on Instagram and her client before/after photos speak for themselves.



Sadie of the blog Simply Sadie Jane frequently blogs about fitness and provides workouts you can do from your living room.

Pinterest is also a great way to search for workouts you can do from home. Everything from yoga, to cardio, to circuits, and more.

Workout apps

Nike Training Club

NTC is a free app from the app store that you can download on your phone. You can choose your workout level and what type of workout you want (abs, cardio, arms, etc.) It also has videos of how to properly do the moves in correct form. It even links with your music library on your phone if you want to play some jams while you workout.


Rock My Run

This app provides music mixes for running. You can choose the length (say you’re going on a 35 minute run) and the tempo of the music (say you’re going to go at a moderate pace, you’d pick something with a moderate tempo).

Visit PCMag.com for their list of the 25 Best Fitness Apps for 2016.

How do you guys get fit outside of the gym? Are there any apps we should know about? YouTube channels we should subscribe to? Should we try fencing or take up water aerobics? Let us know in the comments!


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