Updated: Dec 7, 2020

Do you want to start exercising but don’t know what to do? Going to the gym is just one of many ways to get your 150+ minutes of exercise per week, and it is not for everyone.

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If the very thought of running on a treadmill sandwiched between two strangers is making you cringe, move on!! Find something else.

If you have only known 1 or 2 forms of exercise, think outside the box. Try something new. Go with a friend. You might surprise yourself.

Need motivation? Check out these 20 solid reasons to start exercising!

Here are 21 different ways to get active!

1. Jog outdoors

It doesn’t get much simpler than this. Don your running shoes, plug in your headphones and explore your neighbourhood. If you get bored of the scenery switch it up by driving somewhere new to jog. Looking for company? Find a running buddy or join a running group. Use an app such as Strava to track your process and set goals. Check out these 18 Ways to Make Running more Appealing for more tips to get you going.

2. Yoga

Try out one of the many types of yoga. Often the first class is free or discounted. Not flexible? Even more reason to do yoga! Alternatively, check out YouTube for some free yoga videos you can follow at home.

3. Join a sports team

Join a sports team, such as soccer, volleyball, basketball, hockey or ultimate frisbee.. Most adult leagues are recreational or have divisions for different levels of play. If you played as a kid you will be surprised how quickly it comes back to you!

4. Learn a new sport

There are usually a handful of “learn to play” or “beginner” programs through municipal recreation centers. Or sign up for lessons for an individual sport such as tennis or rock climbing. Do a quick google search to find out what’s available in your area.

5. Go for a hike

Take in the beautiful outdoors while getting exercise. Bring your spouse, friend, kids, dog, anyone. Make it even more exciting by trying geocaching.

6. Kickboxing

Try a traditional kickboxing class or more of a fusion class such as 30 minute Hit.

7. Pilates

Try out a Pilates class or find a Pilates app or YouTube channel.

8. Boot Camp

Need or want someone to push you? Sign up for a boot camp to get your a$$ kicked . . . into shape!

9. Spin class

This is far from a ride in a park. With the lights dimmed and music pumping you will feel energized to burn calories.

10. CrossFit

Join a crossFIt gym. CrossFit incorporates a bit of everything to get you fit and strong if you commit.

11. Exercise videos

Do a quick YouTube search and you will find thousands of free exercise videos. Try some keywords such as “Jillian Michaels,” “HIIT,” “Fitness Blender” or “BeFit.” Many of these come in App and DVD form as well.

12. Invest in exercise equipment

If you are motivated to workout at home, invest in some exercise equipment such as a rowing machine, bike, elliptical, treadmill and/or weights. For incentive, put it in front of a TV and choose an addicting show you will only watch while exercising.

13. Run stairs

Live in a high-rise apartment building or have outdoor stairs near you? Run up and down them for an amazing workout or as part of another workout.

14. Swim

Swim laps at your local pool.

15. Bike

Get on your bike and go for a ride. You could also look into joining a cycling group.

16. Rock climb

Check out an indoor rock climbing facility to learn how to climb. Bring your kids, a friend or significant other.

17. Traditional Gym

Like the idea of going to the gym but unsure what to do there? Book a gym orientation or session with a personal trainer.

18. Zumba

Get fit while shaking your booty.

19. Drop in fitness classes

Check out your municipal recreation center’s drop in schedule for classes such as zumba, yoga, pilates, bootcamp, cardio combo, circuit training, HIIT, cardio kick-box, step, TRX training, core conditioning, High/low aerobics etc. You can pay per class or go to unlimited classes with a membership. Usually child minding is offered at a low cost.

20. Join a boutique fitness studio

Do a quick search and you will likely find a few offering a variety of classes. These are often more intimate than a recreation center, however also come at a much steeper price. Usually the first class is offered free or the first week at a steep discount. Take advantage! Some even offer child minding (extra fee).

21. Cross-country ski or snowshoe

Head up to the mountain and rent some cross country skis or snow shoes. Both are super easy to learn and great exercise.

Whatever you choose, make sure it is something you feel good about and are motivated to do. Not digging it? Figure out why and switch it up.

Wanting to exercise and actually doing it can be two very different things. Goal setting can be the difference between starting today and starting years from now (or never). Head over to the Goal Setting page to develop a plan that you can and will stick to.

Now go get moving!


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