Restrictions around the country are lifting, and community gyms are once again opening up after most of us have gotten used to living without them. Now is as good a time as ever to ask the question: Is a gym membership worth it for me? Here are some elements to consider as you ponder your fitness future.
Worth What, Exactly?
Investing in health and fitness makes sense for everyone. Practically speaking, though, the amount of the investment should vary. A reasonable monthly fee for one person will be more than another should regularly commit to paying. While low-cost gyms offering primarily cardio equipment might charge $20 a month, a studio or CrossFit gym could be in the range of $150-$200 a month, and that’s not insignificant. So, the first question to ask is: What’s the cost?
A secondary question relates to how often you’re paying. Gyms often offer annual memberships that amount to less money per month but require the full financial commitment up front. That makes sense for some and not for others. Consider your income and other financial commitments, and be honest with yourself about how long you expect to be fully committed to using the membership. In a world of media subscriptions and prepaid monthly services, the worst category of financial decisions are the payments for services you don’t use.
What Resources Do You Have Access to Already?
If you’re thinking about joining a gym, consider first how much value you’re adding to your life by assessing what space and resources you have access to already. Is your living space open and useful for home workouts? Or do your roommates take up every square inch? Are you getting where you want to go with a community gym like the one at Granite 550? It could be that maximizing your existing resources, rather than adding another option, will be enough to take your fitness to the next level.
What Are You Trying to Accomplish?
Depending on your fitness goals, you might need the equipment and setting offered by a gym to get there. It’s also possible that you can accomplish those goals without a shared gym. If you’re a runner who primarily uses a gym for a treadmill – you might consider investing in all-weather running gear instead. In a beautiful place like Casper, you can enjoy your hobby in the outdoors year-round. On the other hand, if you want to lift heavy to build muscle, a gym can help you to get ripped safely, with the right equipment and spotters or trainers to assist you.
Does a Motivating Community Matter to You?
A primary reason for the success of CrossFit gyms has been its use of interpersonal relationships – and competition – to encourage fitness breakthroughs. The aspect of community and accountability can be hard to find outside of an established gym. Do you need a trainer, fitness partner, or team to go on the journey with you? If so, find the right gym! Don’t underestimate the value of community in helping you to reach your goals.
Looking for more health and fitness tips? Check out the Granite 550 blog for healthy recipes, local adventures, and more.