I have given myself a challenge!
Recently, because I am a senior on a fixed retirement budget, I gave up my gym membership to save money.
So what things can I do to get exercise several times a week, which will cost me little or no money at all?
- Mall walking. There are several indoor malls within a short bus ride of my house which I can take advantage of if the weather outside is too cold or too hot (which is often the case).
- Walking on the trails around Ottawa. We have the beautiful Greenboro Trail which is half a block away and is kept plowed all winter by the city.
- Cycling. When the weather is good and the trails are free of snow and ice, nothing is better for making me feel like a 17 year old, which is great considering that I am now 71!!!
- Skating. There is the world-famous Rideau Canal, and every neighbourhood in Ottawa has an outdoor rink where one can skate free of charge. People of all ages take advantage of these rinks.
- Wii. I have a Wii console with Wii Sports and Wii Fit. It only takes a few minutes to set up and gives me the opportunity to practice my stretches and balance skills as well as tennis and bowling, which I enjoy.
- Fitbit. I got a Fitbit for Christmas and am able to track my exercise throughout the day. It gives me a running total of things such as number of steps, heart rate, stairs climbed, and total number of “active minutes”.
- Gym mat. Years ago I bought a gym mat which I rarely used but I got it out the other day, dusted it off, and started to use it to stretch and do exercises like crunches and planks.
- Weights. Another item bought years ago and almost forgotten. They are proving useful but I have to take care as the first time I used them, my shoulder problem resurfaced. Take it easy, and start (or restart) slowly.
- Stairs. Because of my Fitbit, I have made a little “circuit” in my house where I start with stretches, and then go to walking and stair climbing.
So far today I have walked more than 6,000 steps, which is 4.5 km. I have been “active” for 24 minutes, and climbed 11 floors.
I know there are probably other inexpensive ways to motivate myself to exercise. Can you think of any that I missed?
I was diagnosed with Type 2 Diabetes last April and I know that exercise helps control blood sugar levels. I have lost 20 pounds since then and should lose 10 more.
I really hope that at my next check-up, my doctor will agree that I am making good progress toward my goal of good health.
Thanks for reading. I hope to be making posts on a more regular basis. – Maureen