How to get fit and lose weight for free

Many Australians started the new year with the goal to get fit and lose weight, but often the common New Year’s resolution can come with a hefty price tag thanks to expensive gym memberships and equipment.

Doctor Anthony Bloomfield says you can shed the extra Christmas kilos without breaking the bank.

“If you are consistently going to the gym you should continue on that path, but if you’re not consistently going or are not even going to the gym at all but want to get fit and healthy this year then you should evaluate your options because there are many alternatives that can save you time and money,” he says.

How to get fit for free

Dr Bloomfield recommends three free fitness apps to his patients.

The free 7 Minute workout app can be done at home without the need to purchase expensive equipment.

“This simple to use, clean user interface with well demonstrated technique. It also offers lots of different workouts with different difficulty levels,” he said.

The Couch to 5km Runner app offers a free 8 week running plan.

“This is great for people who want to get back into running but haven’t been exercising in a while,” he said.

Dr Bloomfield recommends Polar Beats for those considering purchasing a wearable device.

“If you like numbers, being able to see your heart rate in real time is highly engaging,” he said.

He also suggests making exercise a social activity, such as walking groups, team sports and walking with friends.

“Community based group activities such as the Health Foundations Walking groups are everywhere and a great way to connect with people in a healthy and free way,” he said.

To inspire the kids to get fit with you, Dr Bloomfield warns against calling it exercise.

“The Go4Fun program is a free and healthy lifestyle program supporting children to become fitter, healthier and happier,” said Dr Bloomfield.

For those living with a chronic health condition some exercise can improve the pain, however Dr Bloomfield says many patients are unaware of the free medical treatments.

“People are potentially entitled to up to 5 free sessions with an exercise physiologist and/or physiotherapist who can help tailor a plan for their needs. They should have a discussion with their GP as they can refer to get the free sessions,” he said.