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Fitness 101: Group Fitness vs. Gym Membership

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There are a lot of options out there when it comes to fitness. From gym memberships, to group fitness, to in-home personal training -- things can get overwhelming quickly if you're trying to figure it out all at once. Here's a list of pros and cons, tips and tricks, and general advice on both group fitness and gym membership. Hopefully it will make choosing how you get fit a little easier.

Group Fitness
If you like trying new things, keeping your workouts fresh and exciting, and exercising with your friends, group fitness may just be right for you!

· Pros: Group classes will bring greater diversity to your workouts and the way you use your body. You will constantly learn new things from new instructors. Trying different kinds of classes is a great way to find what speaks to you.

· Cons: The cost of group classes can add up quickly, finding new instructors/classes can take up valuable time, and your workouts are based around the instructor's schedule.

· Tips/Tricks: If you have an instructor or studio you like, ask if they have deals on class passes (e.g., 10 classes for $50) or single month memberships. Most studios/instructors do, and it will save you loads off of buying class passes at their normal price!

Gym Membership
If you have an ironclad workout plan and enjoy stability in your routine, a gym membership is probably the best choice for you.

· Pros: (Usually) affordable membership, regular hours, and a wide range of equipment to choose from.

· Cons: Locked into membership for several months at a time, and you're on your own during workouts.

· Tips/Tricks: Negotiate with the employee signing you up for membership! Most gyms have wiggle room in their pricing structure to allow for individualized rates. Also, ask if there are any membership specials coming up in the near future (lowered monthly rate, no initiation fees, etc).

Choosing between a gym membership and group classes isn't an easy decision. If you're still having trouble deciding, my suggestion is an easy one: Try both!

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