10 Gym-Free Fitness Ideas

April showers bring May flowers and then comes the gnawing pang to be outdoors 24/7. Whoever thought office life was a good idea was clearly a wacka-something. And then to throw together a bunch of sweaty people and close them in a giant room with fitness machines on even the hottest day…ugh. When the weather is nice, getting to the gym is tough…so why not make some of your workouts gym-free?

A health club CAN be a fantastic place to get your fitness on, but when you are not feeling the idea of being cooped up inside here are 10 different workouts you can do sans the gym:

  1. Take a Walking Tour of your City: An ode to NYC, grab your walking shoes and get moving. I have lived in the city for a year now and STILL have areas of the concrete jungle to discover. If you’ve been talking about seeing so-and-so’s neighborhood, taking a day trip to a new corner of your town or visiting a historic area…now is your chance! Lots of cities host walking tours so be sure to do some research and see what your city has to offer.
  2. Visit the Track: Running around your ‘hood becoming a snore? Challenge your cardio activity by switching your shoe and concrete habit to a track. You can focus on sprints or challenge yourself in new ways by being surrounding by other runners.
  3. Hit up the Pool: I already admitted to you that I am the world’s worst swimmer, but when I do decide to get wet there is no doubt it is a great workout and one that my body is not used to. Plus a little afternoon tanning after a great swim is like a summer lovers dream.
  4. Create your own DIY Boot Camp: Your local park is the perfect place for fresh air and a challenge. Get a few friends together and come up with 5 cardio moves (jump rope, running in place, mountain climbers) and 5 strength moves (lunges, squats, crunches). Once you have your list together get creative by using what your outdoor space has to offer. Try doing tree squats, curb pushups and triceps dips on park benches. Repeat your circuit 3 times and then lounge out on the grass.

    A little bit of yoga, a little bit of cleaning. No biggie.
  5. Make your House Work Count: Your vacuum and you have a date. Yes you do. Household chores can turn into a heart-pumping workout. You have to focus on putting a little more oomph into your scrubbing, dusting and wiping (ar maybe throw in a few jumping jacks from time to time), but a cleaning session can help get you lean.  “You can do it put your back into it…”
  6. Sign up for a Race: And not just any race…an obstacle race. Combing fitness, the outdoors and adventure, obstacle races such as the Mud Run or Warrior Dash are more popular than ever. Get dirty. Get fit. Yes.
  7. Call to your Inner Yogi: What I love about yoga is that it requires nothing more than your own body…and maybe a mat. There are tons of online workouts you can derive inspiration from to spark your desire to go into downward dog. Try out YogaTailor for a customized yoga routine that is just for you!
  8. Front Deck Workout: Make it a game. Every time you hear a horn honk that means 10 jumping jacks for you. If you see a car drive down your street that means it is time to do your push-ups. In between each said fitness move you should run in place. Your kids will love this one because they can join in my “commanding” you on what to do and do some moves alongside you. This is a fun way to catch some rays, feel the breeze and wave to all your neighbors as they pass by. Maybe they will want to join you in your sweat session.
  9. Go old School with Rollerblades: Putting on your rollerblades will make you feel…um, awesome! Throwback to the old days, right? Rollerblading is a sure way to tone your abs and legs while helping you improve your flexibility. Surprisingly, I see quite a few people cruising around central park with their 4-wheeler of choice.
  10. Join a Team: Doesn’t the thought of dodge ball or kickball sound much more appealing than dragging yourself to the gym? Sign up for an adult sports league to get outside and get out of your comfort zone.

How do you get sweaty sans the gym? Will you be doing any outdoor workouts over Memorial Day weekend?

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  1. I run the stairs at the hospital when I am on my breaks. A quick flight up is a pretty good work out especially if I do it 3 or 4 times per day. Every little bit helps and diversity makes working out more fun and interesting. Great ideas to change up the work out!

  2. I typically do heavy yardwork when I don’t want to go to the gym. My yard is large, so there is always something to do. An easy workout is pulling weeds. A hard one consists of raking or laying sod! The time seems to pass by quickly and there is always something pretty to see when you are done!

    • Oh yard work…yes that is a good one to add to the list! Right now I am yardless so it skipped my mind, but I love that you have waves of difficulty in your yard work and get to be outside!

  3. I love them all except for number 5!
    House work just sucks. There I said it.

    I’m working on training my kids to clean the house; they can get their exercise while the mop the floors! Me, I’ll stick to the track, the gym, the playground, anywhere BUT cleaning house!

  4. I think I could give you a run for your money on this:

    “I already admitted to you that I am the world’s worst swimmer”

    Ha! So you won’t find me at the pool anytime soon but I WILL be cleaning more consciously and “putting my back into it!” You are too funny!

  5. Really fun and helpful post! I agree that the gym is great and all, but working out at home is JUST as effective! when I’m not at the gym, I like to do circuit routines at home. I also have been trying to make house chores count. Whenever I’m done mopping the floors my upper body looks like Mrs. Hulk’s. haha! (and the next day I have sore shoulders and neck too) 😛 I think it also helps to tense up the abs if you want sparkly floors.

    • I had laundry day the other day and because I live on a 5th floor walk up and have to do my laundry outside around the corner I am always a bit sore afterwards! Household chores can really get ya.


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