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7 Ways to Get Great Fitness Discounts

Physical fitness and financial fitness go hand in hand. There is a clear and established relationship between having a healthy lifestyle and enjoying a more positive financial outlook. Having a healthy lifestyle can significantly reduce your vulnerability to an array of health risks that can both take you away from work and carry a hefty price tag. 

Those who are fit also often report more energy, better focus and higher morale in their everyday lives. All of this translates to greater productivity and improved chances of success in your career and your life.

So it makes perfect sense to invest in your fitness. But as long as we’re drawing connections between fitness and finance, it’s still a great idea to find ways of saving on your fitness costs. From what you spend on gym membership or access to fitness centers to your expenses for exercise equipment and fitness gear, getting and staying in shape can cost a lot of money. But it doesn’t have to.

You can jump to our article on the connections between exercise and earnings if you’d like to learn more. Or you can read on to find out how you can create a fitness program that is personalized, effective, and affordable.

7 Tips for Saving Money on Your Personal Fitness Program

Of course, everybody has their own unique set of fitness goals and challenges. Use those strategies below which apply to you and your situation. Discard those strategies that do not. The ultimate objective is to advance both your financial and physical wellbeing.

1. Work Out At Home

Gym memberships can cost a fortune. Depending on where you live and what you have access to, you can spend hundreds or more every year for membership at your nearest fitness locations. However, there is a pretty clear alternative. While it might be nice to have access to all that fancy equipment, you could simply design your workouts to fit your home. Whether you convert a guest room, laundry room, or garage to an exercise space, you can get started with an absolutely minimal investment.

An article from eFile points out that “Pushups, sit-ups, pull-ups, and squats can all be done with minimal equipment. For a cardiovascular workout, you can go for a run in your neighborhood if the weather allows, which is a much more pleasant alternative to the treadmill.”

If you’re not really sure how to create your own fitness program, you’ll be happy to know that there are nearly infinite online classes and regimens available entirely for free on YouTube. You can browse for routines based on your available equipment, your health goals, or your level of fitness. This is a good area to crowdsource suggestions from your friends as well.

2. Look for Affordable Gym Deals

Naturally, it takes discipline to work out at home, by yourself. It’s not for everybody. You may feel like you truly do need a gym membership to meet your goals. Obviously, that’s totally cool.

Just don’t settle for the gym directly around the corner because it’s conveniently located. Every day, new gyms with new specializations are opening in your neighborhood. Make sure you do your due diligence. Comparison shop for gym discounts. You might also want to find out if any gyms offer a discounted rate for paying for a year upfront, as opposed to paying monthly.

You should also see what kinds of fitness deals come with your gym membership. Some gyms offer access to a set number of personal training sessions, to spa facilities, to cafes featuring healthy snacks, and more.

Part of getting your money’s worth from a gym membership is actually committing to regular gym visits. The more your gym has to offer, the more likely you are to become a regular. So as you’re pricing out gyms, take these factors into account. Getting your money’s worth is about more than just discounted rates. It’s also about investing in your own quest to stay active. Balance bargain hunting with the search for a gym that you’ll actually like going to.

3. Find Out If Your Health Plan Covers Fitness Costs

Some health insurance companies will actually help pay for the cost of your gym membership or other investments you make into your fitness. For instance, since 2012, Blue Cross has offered a partial reimbursement to a large cross section of its customers.

According to the Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield site, “Exercise is vitally important to staying fit and healthy and lowering health care costs, and employers are looking for innovative programs to encourage workers to take charge of their health. Rewards programs, such as HorizonbFit, work to encourage healthy behaviors, and we wanted our larger customers to have access to this great program.”

The HorizonbFit program offers a $20 monthly rebate for those who visit a qualified fitness center at least 12 times a month, producing up to $240 in annual savings on gym memberships. Contact your provider to find out if your health plan has a similar rebate.

4. Check Out Senior Fitness Programs

Fitness is important for everybody, but it takes on heightened importance as we age. Staying active is critical to maintaining your strength, mobility and flexibility as well as avoiding injury as you get older. That’s why there are a number of programs aimed at helping seniors remain active for reduced rates or even for free.

For instance, members of the AARP may be able to take advantage of various discount membership programs in order to access gym memberships at a reduced rate. It’s also noteworthy that you don’t need to be a senior, nor must you be retired, to join and enjoy the benefits of the AARP. You need only pay the extremely low membership fee.

Or, for an option that is entirely free–but limited only to those who are 65 and older–you could consider a program called Silver Sneakers, which is provided through Tivity Health. 

According to Tivity, SilverSneakers® is “The nation’s leading community fitness program designed specifically for seniors,” [and] “promotes greater health engagement and accountability by providing members with regular exercise (strength training, aerobics, flexibility) and social opportunities at up to 22,000 locations nationwide—all at no additional cost to them.”

If you are over the age of 65 and there is a participating SilverSneakers location near you, this would certainly be the most affordable way to access a fitness center and a network of professional support.

5. Bike to Work

There are other ways to advance your fitness goals while simultaneously offsetting your living expenses. If you commute to work, you’re spending money on gas, tolls, and/or public transportation. Not only do these costs add up, but that time spent commuting may amount to hours a week of fairly sedentary conditions.

Instead of sitting in your car and cursing the traffic, zip by on a bicycle and turn that idling time into an opportunity for fitness. Now you’re saving a ton on transportation costs, and you’re using your commute to stay active. That’s a pretty good deal.

And if that wasn’t enough, you’re also helping the environment, and the government is willing to reward you for doing so. According to an article from, “The Energy Improvement and Extension Act, which went into effect on January 1, 2009, makes it legal for cycling commuters to apply for a $20 per month reimbursement.” says you can visit to learn more about this credit.

6. Pay Per Class

As we’ve noted, staying on track with a home workout routine requires a ton of discipline. But you can get help staying on track without shelling out for a full gym membership. It may actually be possible to pay for classes piecemeal through a local community center, community college, or even your place of worship.

An article from Motley Fool suggests, “If you’re on a limited budget and want to stay active, look for free or low-cost classes in your community. Some fitness instructors offer ‘pay what you can’ classes to encourage more community members to work out regardless of their financial situation. Don’t miss out on opportunities like this.”

Not only does this option come without the long term financial commitment of becoming a gym member, but you can usually access opportunities like aerobics, yoga, or spin classes at a minimal cost.

7. Renegotiate Your Gym Rates

If you’ve been a member of your gym for a long time, now is a great time to revisit what you’re paying. How does it compare to the cost of membership for other gyms with similar facilities?

In the aftermath of the pandemic, which forced many gyms into temporary (and in some cases, permanent) closure, quite a few fitness centers slashed their membership prices. Are you still paying a fair market price for your membership or could you be getting a better deal out there?

We’re not suggesting you should simply turn around and leave your gym, especially if you enjoy the facilities. But if you do find lower prices out there, you may want to approach the membership office at your gym to request the renegotiation of your rate. Find out how much they really wish to keep your business.

And as long as you’re at it, ask if your gym has any special programs for those who are struggling to make ends meet. “If you’re hurting for cash”, says the article in, “ask about limited membership options for less expensive rates, which may limit the hours or areas of the gym you can use. One Gold’s Gym in Green Brook, N.J., for example, offered free 8 a.m. to 3 p.m., Monday through Friday membership for the month of January to people who have recently been laid off.”

While your local gym may not advertise any special discounted rate, it never hurts to ask.


One of the recurring themes of this discussion is the willingness of others–like insurance companies and government programs–to invest in your health. That’s because a healthy society is a prosperous one. We all stand to gain from the shared pursuit of fitness.

And on a personal level, the energy, effort and commitment you put into your fitness may well be reflected in your financial health. For more on the connection between fitness and finance, check out our article on how staying healthy can also help you financially.