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John Karwowski - Are Gym Memberships Worth It?



Health and fitness are incredibly important for us as human beings. By keeping active and maintaining healthy diets, we can feel great and live longer. There has been some debate on just how to maintain that active lifestyle. Some believe that the best way is to purchase a membership to a gym and utilize the various equipment and perks of a gym. Others believe that humans can stay just as fit and healthy outside of the gym, using nature and homegrown regimens work to their benefit, thus saving money.


As it turns out, there are pros and cons to each.


Gym Membership

According to a recent study performed by scientists at Iowa State University, the benefits of a gym membership are quite staggering. The study focused on 405 adults, half of which held gym memberships, and half who did not. The scientists then kept track of the subjects’ daily health activities for several weeks. After analyzing the results, the study found that those who belonged to a gym exercised a whopping average of 484 minutes a week, compared to the non-gym members’ average of 137 minutes. This was then compared to the Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans (PAG), with 75% of gym members meeting the requirements, compared to a dismal 18% of non-members. This clearly shows that, when given access to a gym membership, people will exercise more. The study also found a bevy of other statistics that favor the gym membership, such as better cardiovascular measures and smaller chances of obesity. Gyms also tend to offer the most up-to-date, high-quality equipment available, with other perks, like fitness classes, saunas and pools.


Non-Gym Membership

Obviously, the biggest issue with any gym-membership is the fact that they are not free. This then begs the question: if you can exercise for free, why would you pay to do it? And this is a perfectly logical and viable question. There are several different methods of exercising outside of a gym that are incredibly cost-effective. While setting up your own personal gym at home can cost a bit of money at first, in the long run, you will save you hundreds! You can also, as previously mentioned, utilize nature to achieve your health goals. Go for a walk in the park, a jog around your neighborhood or a run on a trail. These are all free methods of remaining active, with the added benefit of fresh air, as opposed to the stuffy, sometimes smelly, air in a gym. Speaking of which, gyms can be incredibly germ and disease-ridden. By staying home and working out, you decrease the chances of getting sick while trying to get fit.
Again, there are both pros and cons to each, but ultimately, it is up to you to decide. Each route will lead to success, as long as you are determined and willing to work. Whatever choice you make, your body will be better off for it.