Why Cancelling My Gym Membership Was The Best Decision

Why cancelling my gym-membership was the best decision for me


Coming to university is a fresh start, and as such, it’s easy to make promises to yourself: you’re an adult now, so you will eat healthy, save money and of course, start exercising properly. Joining the gym almost feels mandatory – but it might not be the best choice for everyone.

I was one of many to sign up for a gym membership at the Sport Village last September. My thought process was the following: I may be a couch potato, but I hate wasting money – so if I get the direct debit membership set up, and money deducted every month, I will be motivated enough to actually go to the gym. Fool proof logic, right? At first, I managed to work out a couple times a month. I enjoyed playing around – even if not very effectively – with the machines and even signed up for a few classes. Then, as time went by and essay due dates creeped up I found myself less and less inclined to get up early in the morning or waste an hour of my precious free time on exercise.

Months passed while I kept paying the very reasonable 16 pounds for the membership without really using it – at least not enough to make a difference in my overall fitness or to be worth it in general. Furthermore, I started feeling more and more disheartened: on one hand, I felt guilty for not exercising, and on the other, I felt guilty for pouring money down the drain. That 16 quid is not a huge amount: it’s a great deal if you make use of the amazing facilities and the group classes (or if you know your way around the gym), but it adds up if you’re basically throwing it away like I was.

Finally cancelling my membership after a year felt like a relief. I spent 192 pounds on something that did not improve my health or fitness, but instead made me feel miserable, guilty and ashamed of my own laziness. I learned the hard way that having a great plan (that works for some) does not equal success. You must be aware of your lifestyle and your preferences, but also know that there are other ways of leading a balanced life than joining the gym. Even though I don’t work out in the traditional sense, I don’t consider myself unhealthy. I walk several hours a week and try to cook wholesome, nutritious meals (although there’s room for improvement in that department – I blame Tesco for offering so many snacks!).

So, by all means, get a membership and start working out – it’s great for you! But if it starts to feel more like a burden than something enjoyable, don’t be afraid to quit. There’s plenty other ways to exercise, be active – or, you know, you can ditch the social expectation and do whatever you want. At the end of the day, your happiness and emotional stability is way more important than having a “perfect” figure.


Images: google images