The Cost of Keeping Fit

A follow-up to “How to Procrastinate Signing Up for a Gym Membership While Still Being Productive About It.”

• Gym membership: $25/mo, in my office park.

• Tracking app: Free! Thanks Runkeeper.

• 2 sports bras + workout pants: $25 from Cohoes

• 1 workout shirt, 1 pair of workout shorts, hand weights: $16.81 from Target

• Additional workout clothes: $0 from my mom who is so excited we are both exercising she has taken to buying us matching bras and shirts.

• Gym bag: $11.49 from Amazon because my reusable grocery bag was not cutting it

• Ikea towel: $2.99 from Ikea because my face towel from college was small and covered with acne medication stains.

• Phone holder armband thingee: $11.96 from Amazon

• Knee brace: $18.95 from Amazon. I think it maybe its helping?

• New shoes: $60 Asics from Sports Authority, bought in store. Because maybe they will help my knee?

• Ice pack: Free, stolen from my parents’ basement freezer during my trip home.

• Additional Costs: A bum knee, the stress and hours needed to recover from a stolen credit card. Thx, Target.

• Earnings: Ability to run a 5K, ability to do 10 push-ups, ability to brag that I workout.

• Savings: My remaining three pairs of jeans, dignity


Liz lives in Boston, and sometimes updates her tumblr.


14 Comments / Post A Comment

rhinoceranita (#5,858)

I often buy work out clothes from Target! I am short/small enough to buy large children’s sizes and save $5 off each item. Thank you, obesity epidemic!

ATF (#4,229)

@rhinoceranita I get most of mine from Target and Old Navy and the various road races I run. The only thing I splurge on is sports bras because I’ve found that Champion makes the best one for those of us that are busty and they tend to not be cheap, even when I go to the outlets for them.

Lyesmith (#4,385)

I do muay thai – it costs $111/month (curse you, HST), but it comes out to $9.25 per class, since I go three times a week. It’s a great all-around work out (45 minutes of cardio, 45 minutes of technique) and you can go as often as you like – I don’t because I need my rest days. The initial investment was a $60 pair of bag gloves, $50 pair of Thai shorts, and $20 hand wraps. There have been no other costs since (beside a $20 pair of ankle supports I’m buying because my stupid flat feet hurt when I’m jumping rope), and I’ve been doing it for a couple of years.

andnowlights (#2,902)

I could have written this! I just joined the Y ($49/month including parking because it’s downtown) and $83 and change on new workout clothes because all of mine are too small. I’ve gone every morning this week and not being able to walk because I’m so sore is priceless.

I love that your mom is buying you matching workout gear.

Liz the Lemur (#3,125)

I spent a lot of money to get myself into climbing over the past 2 years – $389 on a gym membership ($32.41/mo, so not that bad) $80 for shoes, and another $50 or so for a harness (both on sale.) I really want to get into outdoor climbing, but that takes more gear and more knowledge than I have right now. And I’d also need a car.

lisaf (#3,089)

I’d be interested in seeing this for other sports, too! I got into olympic weightlifting, and the costs are pretty astronomical even though I buy a lot of gear used or ordered in bulk with teammates. Plus coaching is pricey. I’d say about $3000 in the past year for everything.

Wait. What is up with your knee? Don’t run on it! If you pulled a tendon or something it will NOT get better with more exercise. You gotta REST and ice it twice a day. Then if it stops hurting maybe you can elliptical/bike for a few weeks. Then maybe you can start running if it still doesn’t hurt. Sorry, but trust.

Also make sure your shoes are supportive enough and fit correctly. It costs more money, but it’s worth it to go to a fancy running shoe store with people who can watch you run and pick out shoes that match your running style. And inserts. I got both and goodbye knee pain.
And congrats on running a 5K! It took me an embarrassing amount of time to be able to work up to that.

garli (#4,150)

The numbers I spent on keeping fit (or, doing super fun things?) are insane.

$150 a month goes to my gym with unlimited circuit weightlifting / cardio interval classes. I go enough so the it comes out to under 10 bucks a class on average. This is possibly the only thing on the list I don’t enjoy – I do it so that I don’t hurt myself while I’m weekend warrioring the rest of the list.

$200 a year goes to field hockey league dues.

$75ish bucks for any field hockey tournament. Average of 3 a year?

$0 a year roller hockey league fees, because this league doesn’t charge goalies. I play on every team and get two games any time I show up.

$2000 about every 10 years to replace the field hockey goalie gear. (Although it’s more along the lines of 350 one year, 200 the next kind of deal)

$1500 for roller hockey – maybe a touch more because the sticks don’t last long.

$120 wetsuit – never replaced. Great for ocean swimming in the winter.

$1000? snowboard + snow clothes?

I’ve tried to make myself like running since I was 15 years old because it’s cheap and easy and you just walk out the door and do it! Or to like playing any non goalie position (so much cheaper on the gear) but I love what I love. What can you do?

$??? Surfboard – had it so long I don’t remember.

ellabella (#1,480)

@garli Yeahhhhhh… your numbers make me feel slightly better, instead of like the terrible spendthrift that I am in comparison to this author.

$160/month for unlimited yoga. (I usually go 3-4x a week, so about $12/class, not bad for an hour and a half of yoga.)

I’ve found that quality exercise clothes basically last indefinitely if you wash them on delicate and air-dry, so even though I’ve probably spent about (~$80/pant x ~$40/shirt = $120/outfit, 7 outfits –>) $820 (!!!!!) on exercise clothes over the last 7 years, that comes out to, say $82 a year, so not bad. Mat (Manduka Pro Lite) = $80.

Winter hiking and skiing: $45 on ski gloves, $100 on ski pants, $15 on ski socks,$90 on base layer (outrageously expensive but SMARTWOOL! It’s so great! I wear it like 3 days a week!)

Deciding to do a triathlon:

$110 on running shoes (Wendy Davis’ Mizunos!)
$80/semester for gym locker.
$0 on Speedo from when I was TWELVE
$20 on goggles
$8 on swim cap
$110 on Triathlon fee
$12 for one day triathlon club membership?
(bike costs are calculate along with transportation)

garli (#4,150)

@ellabella Oh yeah for clothes and shoes I have no idea. I’ve had some of the same sports bras since college (I’m 32). I’m also lucky enough to live right near a big outlet mall that has Nike and Underarmour – it’s on my way home from field hockey.

Although if we’re gonna be honest I consider the gym/classes as the cost of keeping fit and all the sports/activities the cost of keeping happy.

@ellabella yesssssss, airdry everything (except towels! Airdried towels are torture).

I’ve finally convinced myself that my workout wardrobe is complete in spite of how cute the new onzie leggings are, so my only regular expenses are my $109 yoga membership (4-7x/week, easily worth it) and the $5 daily gym fee every time I decide I should really get into lifting heavy (once every other week since it takes me that long to get over the soreness). Oh, and the $45 copay for quarterly chiro sessions from doing too many handstands.

Comments are closed!