Working Out Outside Of The Gym

Two weeks ago, I broke up with my gym.

My gym has been good to me. For years, it’s where I went to take spinning, Zumba, hop on the treadmill and lift weights. There were times when I paid monthly dues and rarely set foot in the door. And months when I got my sweat on four or five days a week. Through the ups and downs of my workout routine, my gym was always there for me.

But sadly, I grew bored of the gym. I needed something else to encourage me to work out. And I found it.

Thanks to the Torque classes I started attending last August, I have found a renewed excitement about exercise. While I can’t attend as often as I’d like right now, being almost six months pregnant, I know Torque will be the workout I return to after the baby is born.

So I canceled my gym membership for the first time in almost 10 years. While it feels weird to no longer have a gym membership, I’m 100% happy working out at Torque, and I’ll also be hitting the pavement walking the further into my pregnancy I get.

A 2-mike walk on my vacation day? If it's @railroadpark then yes, please! #stellarfitfam #stellarmiles #stellarhealth #health #fitness

Walking at Railroad Park

That’s the beauty of working out these days: the options. Between Crossfit, yoga studios, barre classes, parks with trails for walking and running, there’s no shortage of places to get sweaty! Not to mention the workouts you can download right at home, or check out on YouTube. You don’t need to shell out money for the typical, old-school gym anymore.

Here are some of my favorite workouts that don’t require a gym membership:

  1. Torque or a similar workout — obviously I’m a huge fan of this workout, and anything that challenges you to combine bursts of cardio with strength-training is fun and keeps you on your toes.
  2. Yoga — here in Birmingham, I highly recommend Abundance Yoga or the Yoga Circle. I’ve taken more difficult classes and classes for beginners, such as Fat Girl Yoga. I find them physically tough but also mentally relaxing. A great stress relief!
  3. Free classes at Railroad Park — if you don’t live in Birmingham, check out classes your city may offer as part of a “get healthy” movement that many cities partake in. The classes sponsored by Blue Cross Blue Shield usually include Zumba, yoga and other fun group classes that get you outside, in a gorgeous setting, with other people in your town!
  4. Barre — I’ve taken a few barre classes and I love them. I think they work different muscles than I normally focus on, and the movements can easily be adapted for your fitness level.
  5. Walk or run — the easiest way to stick to this is to either give yourself a monthly mileage goal to reach — aiming for 20 miles, for example, would mean needing to walk a mile or two most days of the month — or make dates with friends and get some social time in while you stroll.

A few other options I’ve heard people enjoy, but I haven’t tried myself, are of course Crossfit, OrangeTheory and Iron Tribe. You should also look for fun dance classes, like belly dancing!

Struttin' my stuff with See Jane Write founder Javacia

Belly dancing with See Jane Write founder Javacia

Breaking up with the gym isn’t for everyone. But sometimes if you’re stuck in a rut and you need a push to try something new, paying a drop-in fee at one of these locations, or just hitting the pavement for walking and running, can be a great boost to your routine.

Let me know if you decide to try something new, and what you think!

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