Fuck the Gym

Woman putting weights on a barbell

There is a vicious rumor going around that it’s the new year. Fake news strikes again. Sad.

Oh wait… Shit… It is the new year.

Real Housewives Christmas GIF - Find & Share on GIPHY

Well, I guess that explains the recent tsunami of articles about “How to Go to the Gym,” “How to Keep Going to the Gym,” “How to Get to the Gym,” “How to Stay at the Gym Once You Get There,” “How to Not Just Buy a T-Shirt From the Gym That Says, ‘Namasté Fit’ and Then Never Return,” etc.

Yes, people descend on the gym on new years like people descend on the grocery store at news of an approaching storm.

Sure, you don’t like spam or tofu flavored popcorn or the bench press but this is an emergency, goddamnit! You will pay the $9 for the blood sausage, the $90 a month for the gym membership, and you will just wait for the storm of expectation to pass.

Oh, fuck the gym. Fuck the gym so hard. (Note: my traffic soars any time I use the word “fuck” in the title of a post. “Fuck High Heels” is my most popular performing post by like a million disappointed perverts.)

My big new year’s truth bomb is pretty obvious, yet one of those things that is so easily forgotten:

exercise and the gym are not mutually exclusive.

Now for a disclaimer, because I know there are at least 1000 of you shaking your heads right now. You are poised to praise the pure joy and peace, the triumphs and great personal satisfaction that comes only from working out at the gym. Of those 1000, 980 of you are kidding yourselves.

Maybe you are genuinely the exception. Perhaps you love squats and delight in the treadmill and are brought to joy on the bench press. It’s not just something you tell yourself you love or know is good for you, therefore worth it. You fucking love it. If this is you, that is awesome. (I’m not jealous, you’re jealous! Shut up!)

Me Working Out Nicki Minaj GIF - Find & Share on GIPHY

Now that we have weeded out the joyful gym rats, let’s talk about you. You want to be tight, toned, and, flexible. You want all the benefits of going to the gym, but you don’t want to go to the gym. Regardless of this, you may go (regularly even) and you might keep it up for a month, maybe two, or longer.

Regardless of whether you can be a good, disciplined greyhound and go regularly, or you consistently “let yourself down,” I am here to propose something to you that will change your life, if you let it.

The physical activity you find beautiful is the one you need to start doing

For me, that thing is swing dancing.

Christina Aguilera Dancing GIF - Find & Share on GIPHY

I always thought it looked so classy, so fun, so magical. Learning it has been the absolute best thing I have done for my body. I can clock two hours of aerobic activity without breaking a sweat. No, just playing, I get sweaty as balls but I don’t even care.

Beyond feeding my passion, swing dancing has built-in high intensity interval training because you take a breather between partners and it has a wonderful, fun community, which always keeps me coming back. I know that my money goes to supporting local instructors and business owners and not some mega gym, plus I can drink and wear fake eyelashes while I incinerate calories and tone my legs. Sustainable AF.

Feeling motivated? I bet you are!

This new year, find the the activity you can keep up with, the one you can commit to. The activity that looks like magic to you is the one that will heal your body, promote your happiness, and protect your brain. That is the activity that will never feel like work and fill you with joy.

Now you might say to yourself, I don’t have anything that speaks to me. I’ve made a list of common activities that drive people’s passions. I bet one of them will call to you. Maybe you know what it is already. If you do, I recommend taking that $60 to $120 a month you spend not going to the fucking gym and toss it towards the thing that your body truly wants you to do.

  • Swing dancing
  • Tango dancing
  • Salsa dancing
  • Belly dancing
  • Ballroom dancing
  • Yoga
  • Tai chi
  • Martial arts
  • Boxing
  • Biking
  • Soccer
  • Skateboarding
  • Aerial silk
  • Pickleball
  • Ultimate frisbee
  • Golf
  • Horseback riding
  • Swimming
  • Lasertag
  • Hiking
  • Juggling
  • Fencing
  • Tap dancing
  • Ice skating
  • Rollerblading
  • Volleyball
  • Roller derby
  • Training for American Ninja Warrior

 

Letting go of your gym membership does not mean you have let yourself go.

It means you are finally beginning to recognize that moving your body should not be a chore, but a way to express the thing that brings you joy.


Check out January’s awesome bloggers in the sidebar!

177 thoughts on “Fuck the Gym

  1. What a great post…everyday I want to say “Fuck the Gym” but drag myself there anyway…now I’m actually considering swing dancing…sounds waayyy more fun!! Thanks DG!
    Also thanks for putting me on your sidebar…fantastic!!

    Like

  2. I made this mistake last year, which left me significantly poorer for the next 4 months until I realised – yep, screw the gym. I even read somewhere that January is supposed to be the best month for gym revenue and that they count on people not coming in and forgetting to cancel their membership as a way of making money. Hilarious. You are right though, I have found that I really enjoy taking nice relaxed walks with my partner instead of going to the gym. Upside: it’s absolutely free! Great post as always ❤

    Liked by 1 person

  3. This is a great post. The gym is not realistic for me. I mean come on… something I never did throughout the year will magically become my new fave hobby in the new year *rolls eyes*. The gym here records it’s highest profit in January and perhaps November…hahah…

    Unfortunately us developing countries have not explored investing in a number of items on your useful list *facepalm*. I love Hiking for sure… and since it’s either the gym or beating the pavement here. We have sea water lots and lots of sea water so I stick to swimming or walking in my house… lol…

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  4. Love this one especially much! For me it’s water aerobics! Where else can a very fluffy (I hate the term obese), retired, spike-haired lunatic jump and splash and “dance” without being arrested? Keep writing.

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  5. *starts looking for belly dancing classes* loved this post! I called myself wanting to start going to the gym… ask me how many times I’ve went and how much money Planet Fitness is making off of me smh! Fuck the gym *calls to cancel membership and ask for a years worth of refunds*

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  6. Lady, you are are pure joy and I love you!!!! I am a bit of a danger in the group class setting (the whole partially sighted/blind thing gets in the way), but I dance like a banshee at home and it is so much fun. The music gets me motivated to move!!!!

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  7. Yeah whenever a friend says s/he’s going to the gym or that s/he just joined a gym, I’m like… “Cooooool. Let’s see how long that lasts, but also, stop ditching me for the damn gym.”
    I don’t know… I think I work out better at home. I use a lot of YouTube videos or just do exercises I know by heart while watching TV, which motivates me more because I’m entertained and I feel comfortable at home. The gym has so much judgment and germs. My friend got a boil from the gym, I’m pretty sure.
    Also, I love watching dancing. I can’t dance for my life, but it’s awesome that you know how to do all these dances! Like swing dancing! That always looked so fun and cool. I’m envious!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Yes! Thank you for saying what I think every time the “news” offers tips on how to get to the gym. Is Big Gym paying the news to run those stories? I mean, c’mon.

    For me, I love skating on ice or quads (I used to play roller derby, but no longer due to repetitive injury to my hips), riding my bike, hiking, camping (set up, tear down, gathering wood, and wandering around in the forest are good exercise and great fun for me), gardening, and yoga. Sometimes I run, but I wouldn’t say I love it — it’s cheap and accessible for when my body spontaneously tells me it’s time for cardio.

    There is so much out there in the world, I could not imagine gluing myself to a treadmill. The only problem is I get to be more sedentary when the weather turns cold, because most of the activities I like are outdoor. I do like to weight train. It makes me feel powerful, but a kettle bell suits my needs just fine. I’d really like to get into rock wall climbing, but it’s a bit pricey.

    Great post! Thanks for letting me commandeer your comments section while my blog is on hiatus.

    Like

    1. P.S. I should probably confess I have been a gym rat before — the last activity in your list made me think of it. I was training for roller derby, though! That is one good reason and motivation to go to the gym: to train your body for a pursuit you love, like those crazy Spartan races or a sport. Cross training can totally transform your game.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Oooooh! I didnt even think about using the gym as a tool to train! For an actual thing! lol! Hmm, maybe this post needs a sequel! Good to see you Jessie!!

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  9. I’m glad to see you write about this. I’ve tried to say as much to my readers in a roundabout way. We’re gotta do what feels good damn it.

    My Nature Porn title was a winner as well. Gotta give the people what they want! And how funny that my title today also has fuck in it. Dirty broads 🙂
    Swing always looks like everyone is having the time of their lives. Dancing, to me, is one of the best things ever made.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Totally the best. Its in our DNA to do, and people ( especially men) are really discouraged from doing it. Which is a damn shame!! Oh yea, Nature Porn! I wanted to see somebody boffing in the woods but I found your site instead haha!

      Like

  10. I never really liked exercise during school as I hated my PE teacher but since leaving in 2014 (it’s been so long); I have exercised more now then ever before but I hate going to the gym.
    I don’t like the gym one bit as I feel so self conscious so I work out at home where no one can see me 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  11. I’m a skinny bitch and I love to eat. And I actually love the fucking (why can’t my phone learn not to autocorrect to ducking!!) gym… but I’m not there as much as I would like too. Tango. Need to learn tango before I die. 😘 thanks for another great post!!

    Liked by 1 person

  12. God this is sooo true… i was a gym junkie 3 yrs ago…. i thoght i would burst if i didnt workout my midsection, lift heavy and deadlift 100kgs…. but then I discovered swimming, and hiking, and pillates and yoga and i never went back… 4th year now…

    Thanks for the like… ur posts are awesome

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Pickleball? I kinda think you just made that up to see if we were really paying attention.

    But the again, I thought goat yoga was a joke too. We humans have waaaayyyy too much free time on our hands.

    Like

    1. One drunken night, ping pong and tennis got together and had a little too much fun, and nine months later, pickleball was born. It’s a beautiful love child. I am the youngest person on my league by about 40 years, but it is just like, the best game ever.

      Liked by 1 person

  14. Dancing, walking, and yoga seem like a perfect triad – wear whatever, do whenever, wherever, not difficult or requiring pumping up towards accomplishing, etc.

    But when desiring that output of extra effort, I’ve found it satisfying to accomplish my all-time favorite activity, READING, while doing a plank. Smash that page.

    Thank you for being fun and smart, to help the world.

    Liked by 1 person

  15. Legit love this! I’m starting hula hooping as a small fun thing to do while practising my Spanish and French with YouTube videos, such a pro multitasker 😂 got to get something more aerobic in though

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  16. Dancing and yoga is my way to get fit. I can never go to the gym. I think I’ve only gone once and never again. The gym can rest in peace.

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  17. hello dggyst its dennis the vizsla dog hay my dada sez he had a jym membership yeerz and yeerz ago but he never went instead he and my mama tayk dansing lessuns now just like yoo sugjest!!! they do waltz and fokstrot and tango and salsa and all that other stuf!!! wel not mutch swing on akkownt of my mama hayts that wun!!! ha ha ok bye

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  18. The best way to get me in a bad mood, which is fucking rare, is to ask me to go to the gym. My blood pressure instantly reaches ‘stroke-out’ levels, and I completely lose my shit when someone asks me. So yeah, the gym can totally go fuck itself. And who knew about fuck in the title?! How in the fuck did I miss this Damn Girl post?! That’s gonna be the title of my next post!

    Liked by 1 person

  19. I gotta admit… I love the gym. But only when I hire a trainer to cheerlead/bully me through workouts. I also do NOT think it’s the only way… My big thing this year is ballet! I joined a freakin’ ballet class. I have NEVER done a dance class in my life. I felt like a graceful hippo at that barre and in front of that mirror in the studio this week – but I did it! And loved it! There are SO many ways that we can move our bodies to stay healthy – mind, body and spirit. I linked this post in my “How to beat the winter blues” post! I loved it!
    Amanda Rae
    http://www.timelesslife.ca

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  20. I loved this post! I said Fuck the gym along time ago! My doctor was pushing me to join a gym or yoga because I have MS, but I can not see the point in spending all the money for a gym membership and having it forced on you! There are many things that can be done out of the gym that are actually fun!!! Your posts are so entertaining and real!!!!

    Liked by 1 person

  21. Thanks for “liking” my last blog post. I came over to see what ya do here, and I love it! This post is awesome, I found myself laughing and nodding along. I’m not a fan of working out either. And running? If I’m running there’s a damn good reason why, and you should be running too, ha! I love love love to dance as well. I just bought my 7 year old Son “JUST DANCE” for his Xbox, and I tell ya what, best purchase ever! I am dancing along right next to him, breaking a sweat, bonding with him, and having fun! Thats my exercise, no treadmills for me. Have a great evening! 🙂

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  22. You forgot my preferred form of exercise on your wonderful list!!
    Trouble is mine involves having a willing male participant and that is not always possible!! Bit like dancing the tango really!!

    Like

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