Work Out Without Going To The Gym

I don’t know about you Potatoheads, but some days I have a very severe aversion to the gym. Maybe there was a traumatic incident in my childhood that I’ve repressed or maybe it’s the sheer embarrassment I feel due to my lack of fitness, but for some reason for me there’s sometimes no worse activity than running on a treadmill, or lifting a weight in a room full of watchful strangers.

Due to my gym avoidance policy on certain weeks, over the years I’ve had to think creatively when it comes to exercise. I’ve engaged in the usual activities like yoga classes, and barre. I’ve subscribed to the at-home video work out plans, and followed the 6-week programs. However, throughout all of my fitness escapades I’ve always found that my favorite types of work outs have been the ones that make feel like I’m not exercising at all! And now I am sharing my knowledge. So, whether you have self-diagnosed gymphobia or not, here are 10 great workouts to do when you want to avoid the gym. 

  1. Take a Beyonce dance class —The dancing itself will be enough to work up a sweat, but we hear you burn more calories when you’re giving off Sasha Fierce-level attitude.
  2. Play tennis in Central Park — Find three friends, and play a set of doubles. Bonus points for dressing in Great Gatsby-esque tennis whites.
  3. Go rock climbing — The thrill and adrenaline alone will have your heart pumping.
  4. Go for a brisk walk around your local park or lake — Call your most talkative friend and go for a walk. You’ll cover 10 miles without even noticing, and she’ll still be gossiping about the new boy she met when you hit mile 11.
  5. Hire a bike and ride around Central Park – It may not be Le Tour de France, but at least you’ll build some muscle tone in your calves.
  6. Take a surf lesson – Learn something new while getting a tan? It’s a win win.
  7. Hire a boat and row on the Central Park lake — You may not be with Ryan Gosling, but we can guarantee this will make you feel like you’re in The Notebook, and a possible quick-tone for your arms.
  8. Take a ballet class — Fulfill your childhood dream of being a prima ballerina – or the dream you had after you saw Center Stage for the first time. This will be a workout, ballet is not as easy as it looks.
  9. Join a mixed soccer or basketball team with friend. — Simultaneously socialize and work out. Two birds, one stone.
  10. Take a hike at Breakneck Ridge — This hike has beautiful views of the Hudson river. A workout has never looked so good!

For more workout tips, see these apartment friendly workouts, or a guide to getting toned at home