Friday, April 30, 2010

The Cost of Being Active

My workout routine really ebbs and flows throughout the year. From September through April it's pretty iffy. I am working, doing yearbook and doing National Boards (for the past two years). I pretty much stop going to the gym. It's cold during the Winter, and I just get lazy. Living in Long Beach I do walk some places-but mostly to bars or places to eat, which doesn't really count as working out.

Then, at the end of April, my yearbook deadline is done. The school year is wrapping up, and the weather gets nice again. Suddenly, I am motivated to work out again. Last summer I tried out a bunch of acitivities that I hadn't done before-kayaking, stand-up paddle boarding, surfing, hiking, biking, sping class, etc. And I worked out at the gym a ton during the summer, since I was not working at all. It was great. I was in the best shape of my life.

So, my goal for this summer is to try to be just as active and to try new ways to get fit. Yesterday I went to a rock climbing gym with some co-workers. It was SO fun, although I am incredibly sore today. I would love to go again and to try other activities I haven't tried before, to get me out of my comfort zone. I am also goig on a hike tomorrow morning, which I'm really excited about!

Where am I going with this? Well, it's April. I am ready to get back on the workout wagon. But, my personal finance goals are different this year, and I am trying to figure out how to mesh my two goals for the summer. Last year I had a gym membership, which I cancelled to save money. I think that was a good call, since I wasn't really using it in the "off season." But, now I would like to have it again. I could get a two-year membership at Costco for $300, which is really a great deal. If I wait until I am out of credit card debt, I wouldn't be able to do this until September, so I would ideally purchase this in June. I think I could justify this expense, but I also need to budget for things like kayak rentals, stand-up paddle board rental (I really want to do that again!), maybe the rock-climbing gym, etc. I know there are some free activities-riding my bike and hiking are both free-but I also want to take advantage of my time off and the nice weather to get active and have fun.

So, do I forgo the gym membership and devote that money toward other activities? Or do I do both, and just make my credit card payments a little smaller this summer?

1 comment:

  1. How about this mental exercise? If you bought the membership, it would delay your payments by about 4 months (may-september). So look at the cost of the gym membership as $300 * credit card interest rate for 4 months (1/3 of the year). If that still seems like a good value to you, then go for it, otherwise you might as well save up and do other activities.