One of the thing that interests me currently is how to train for a run on a budget. Like a lot of things in life we can tend to think that we can’t do them if we don’t have money. How do you train to run a spring race during the winter if you don’t have the money for a gym membership? Or if you don’t have the cash to drop on YakTrax or all the other gear that will help you run safely outside? Rather than being discouraged from starting right from the get-go, I want to look into how to do it on the really cheap. Here’s what I’ve found.
Living room workouts
Here are a few things you can do in your living room that get your heart rate up and give you that cardio workout you’re looking for. FitnessBlender has some videos on YouTube including this one that is a 17 minute cardio workout. Like they say in the YT comments, there’s no music so that they can keep the videos free, so turn this on and your favourite dance song and go for it. There are lots of other cardio options that you can find online if you’re looking for variety. This series from Shape.com gives you a warm-up of stretches, a bunch of cardio, and then a warm-down of stretches.
The local/municipal pool
If you’re in a city, you probably have a pool that has free swim hours for residents (click here for Montreal). I’m lucky to have one within a 5 minute walk of my house. You can swim laps or pool run (I’ve just learned about this). The best thing is, the worse you are as a swimmer, the better a workout it is for you! So go find out the hours for your local adult swim and get a work out.
Use the local skating rinks
I’m planning on lacing up my skates to get some regular ice time. There are plenty of outdoor skating rinks in Montreal that are free. I don’t think it should be a problem finding a time when no kids are playing shinny. Well, I’ll get back to you on that one. Anyways, you can try skating laps and build your stamina that way. The great thing about skating is that it’s low impact (though not as low as pool running, I imagine) so it should be easier on your legs/knees than running.
Do you have other ideas of how to stay fit for free during the winter? Share them in the comments here.