Forget painfully expensive gym memberships and paying £30-a-pop for hanging-from-the-ceiling-steam-room yoga classes. LONDON is your gym. It has a multitude of parks, areas with outdoor exercise equipment, lethal staircases at Covent Garden tube station and bikes ready for you to hop on and pedal away. The city is pretty much begging for you to stay healthy (if you ignore the bad weather, the frequent opportunities to eat burgers and the stress it puts you under, giving you an excuse to drink just one more…)
1. FREE Exercise Classes?!
Despite it’s reputation, London is a pretty kind and generous city! Our Parks is one organisation that allows anyone sign up to their fitness classes for free. They offer a variety of classes – from pilates to box fit – which are held across various locations. Download FEVER to discover more and book yourself a place! Then all you need to do is simply ‘turn up and tone up!’
2. Jog On!
There’s something invigorating about running outside that can never be replicated on a treadmill. You’re free from the glare of a digital clock, painfully counting the seconds you’ve been wishing to get off. So step outside on a clear, crisp day and see London’s parks in their full glory (they’re bound to leave you breathless!). Check out some of our favourite running routes and when best to do them.
3. Go Outdoors… To The Gym
Scattered across a variety of locations around London, including Battersea Park, Victoria Park, and Cantelowes Gardens, are outdoor gyms (requiring no monthly membership OR joining fee). So why not spice up your morning jog with an extra strength workout? If you’re the easily embarrassed type and don’t fancy passing dog walkers to get a look at you breaking a sweat, then drag a friend along with you. Then you can both look like you know what you’re doing (or don’t), together.
4. On Ya Bike!
The thought of cycling down London’s raging roads may make you quiver, but thanks to the introduction of Cycle Superhighways, pedalling your way around the city can be less stressful and terrifying. The current superhighways run from Stratford to Aldgate, Wandsworth to Westminster, Merton to the City, Oval to Pimlico and Barking to Tower Gateway, but there are more proposals in place. Not only are they great for getting to and from work, but also useful if you want to break up a sweat on wheels.
5. Step To It
London is a fitness playground – if you want it to be! Take the steps at Covent Garden tube station, for instance. There are 193 in total. On average we burn 1 calorie every 10 steps, so, if you go up and down this stairway 10 times, thats roughly 200 cals burned. BOOM. You might also want to try your legs at Hampstead station (320 steps), Belsize Park (189 steps) or Russell Square (171 steps). You can also make little changes to your day, such as avoiding the tube altogether and walking when you can, for burning those extra calories.
6. Strength In Numbers
It’s nearly always better to work out in groups, that is, unless you’re hating on the world/your job/that annoying man on the tube who told you to move your bag (although you could barely move your own lungs to inhale) and the only way you’ll feel better is after a one-on-one struggle with a punchbag. BUT, at all other times, sweating is better with friends. Whether you choose to get a group together for workouts, set up a local netball team or join a 5-a-side football league, there are so many things going on around London. For some serious team effort, Project Awesome runs free exercises classes at 6.30am and gathers groups between 50-100 people every session!
Featured Image Credit: PT Magazine