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To join a gym ?

(19 Posts)
lovingmyginandiphone Sun 29-Jan-17 09:32:10

This could be a long one so apologies in advance....

AIBU to join a gym while I still have debts etc?

Basically I have a myriad of health issues -asthmas (pretty bad and have excess mucus for 2 years - under investigation), high blood pressure, hypothyroidism, allergies, muscle and joint aches and pains, chronic lower back problems, migraines, IBS. I am also overweight - 5ft6, size 16-18, 15 stone (size 9-10 feet since I was 16 when in was 9stone!). I am 44.

I have tried to lose weight using WW/SW/Exante/5:2/meds from the doctor but those irritated my IBS/increased walking (Fitbit and MFP) and all work for about a month then I plateau.

Now, I also have a lot of debt from my first marriage over 10 years ago which I am paying off on reduced payments beach month and this will take 3-5 years to clear. I work full time and have a reasonable wage but live in the south-east with high rents and living costs. I also have an older teen and a 7 year old living with me and DH number 2.

I am thinking of joining a gym that has a steam room and swimming pool so that I can learn to swim better and get fit that way (no stress on joints and back) and use the steam room for my chest, then also use the treadmills to walk more (have a tree pollen allergy which affects my mucus plus it's highly polluted here) and use exercise as a primary tool to lose the weight and hopefully see an improvement in my health.

I have looked at the council run centres but they don't have steam rooms (just sauna) and when i went to the pool nearest me, the chlorine affected my chest (monthly membership is around £40) The uni gym near me has a steam room but the pool is the other side of town and the small gym gets over run with students so not sure how well that would work (monthly membership is £10-25).... there is a David Lloyd near me (would have to drive to ) and it ticks all the boxes but I know it's very expensive (have heard it's around £70-90!!)

So, AIBU to consider joining a gym in these circumstances, and what option would you think is best?

I don't spent much on myself tbh, and if I cut out all coffees/eating out at work, books and don't buy clothes or treats for the next year while concentrating on getting fitter and better, I could afford it (I'm also now exempt from prescription charges so saving £10 a month on my prepayment card - I have 7 different prescriptions a month) but i feel bad for not doing this to clear the debts quicker, but then I think about my health issues and am thinking health is more important than debts....


MrsMeeseeks Sun 29-Jan-17 09:36:59

YANBU but there might be a cheaper way to do it. Can you get subsidised health insurance through work? You can often get a huge discount on gym membership as part of the package. Or perhaps your employer takes part in Gymflex where they pay the annual membership upfront and takes instalments from your salary.

MargaretCavendish Sun 29-Jan-17 09:42:43

if I cut out all coffees/eating out at work, books and don't buy clothes or treats for the next year while concentrating on getting fitter and better, I could afford it

I think this is unrealistic. A year is a very long time to go without any treats at all. I don't think that means you shouldn't take the gym membership, but I think you should be realistic about the fact that it almost certainly will slow down repaying your debts, so you have to make that part of the cost-benefit analysis.

Foffyouwanker Sun 29-Jan-17 09:47:12

Sports direct gyms are only £20 a month, mine has a sauna & pool, is there one near you?

HopefullyAnonymous Sun 29-Jan-17 09:49:27

Would you be likely to get a gp referral for the gym? They offer this where I live if you are overweight or have certain health conditions

bythewatersedge Sun 29-Jan-17 09:52:26

YANBU. Sometimes, what you spend in one area actually saves in others. I used to have Sky, even though I didn't earn much, because it was a form of entertainment that otherwise I'd have to spend money on (going out and so on.)

bythewatersedge Sun 29-Jan-17 09:52:50

Also, some gyms offer cheaper off-peak membership.

19lottie82 Sun 29-Jan-17 09:55:05

Is there a pure gym near you? They are about £16 a month and opened 24 hours

DonaldStott Sun 29-Jan-17 10:01:47

Yabu to think that exercise will be a big boost to weight loss. Weight loss is to do with calories in, calories out. To burn off enough calories to cancel out something like a double bacardi and coke (fresh in my mind from last night) you would have to jog for half an hr or something. Weight loss, they say is 80% diet, 20% exercise, so you should really concetrate your money, on meal planning and lower cal meals. Of course, exercise does make you healthier and fitter, so yanbu in that regard, but to think the weight will drop off you if you join the gym, yabu.

lovingmyginandiphone Sun 29-Jan-17 10:28:26

Thanks for the replies....

I'm employed by the uni so their gym is the only assisted option and the main part is really convenient for work BUT I have been warned it is very busy with students in the times I couldn't use it (childcare/DH shift work) and the pool takes around 45 mins to get to.

We have a pure gym but it doesn't have a pool or a steam room and the steam room is the primary benefit for my chest.

No sports direct gyms here.... the cheapest gym is the uni gym and the council gyms are the next ones up.

There is a feelfit gym which is about the same as the council ones cost wise but no pool and parking is a nightmare

Re diet, my IBS has a bit impact, to allieviate the symptoms the consultants have said I need a low/residual fibre diet so I have to avoid wholewheat/brown rice/brown pasta or I get severe cramps and diarrhoea and urgency issues (tmi apologies!), some nightshade veg also have an impact. I do eat healthily 80% of the time but am aware that sugar is my downfall so am addressing that too this month with a sugar detox and a reduction in caffeine! I rarely drink and when I do it's gin and slimline tonic....

I think you're right that I may find it hard to limit treats etc but I have a wardrobe full of clothes to slim into and a pile of books to read, plus the uni library.. and I would hope that I see the gym as a treat after a while.

I guess my quandary is do i concentrate on my health and fitness now and maintain my debt payments as they are, or restrict myself as per my plan for the gym to try and clear my debts in 3-5 years and then get fitter/healthier...

lovingmyginandiphone Sun 29-Jan-17 10:29:58

Oh and they stopped GP referrals here to the gyms a year or so ago as I had one and when I called the gym to book was told that they don't do them anymore and that the GP/practice nurse had out of date info....

YouMeddlingKids Sun 29-Jan-17 11:23:21

Not unreasonable if you can pay for it without getting into further debt. Have you tried a free pass to the gym in question to check you won't have the same chlorine issue?

Bluntness100 Sun 29-Jan-17 11:30:48

>>if I cut out all coffees/eating out at work, books and don't buy clothes or treats for the next year while concentrating on getting fitter and better, I could afford it<<

I also think this is unrealistic, and in addition many people think they can cut back and find life fairly miserable if they can't even afford coffee. Plus the novelty of the gym wears off, so you just end up with more debt. I'd maybe to one or two months trial membership, and then decide.

KlingybunFistelvase Sun 29-Jan-17 11:35:43

Agree with pps who suggest a trial membership or ask for free passes in case you have the same problem with chlorine.

lovingmyginandiphone Sun 29-Jan-17 12:10:17

Trial membership sounds like a good idea, I've had day passes and all but the council pool near me seems fine! smile

Will have a word with a couple of options about a 1-3 month trial without being tied in!

Thank you ;)

Ginkypig Sun 29-Jan-17 12:53:38

In theory it doesn't sound like a terrible plan but...

Steam room are actually bad for asthma sufferers (I might be wrong but I'm sure im not) they can aggravate the condition.

You need to be really sure your going to use it!

Have you seen pay as you gym? It might be an option short term until your sure your going to go regularly but also let you try lots in your area (including hotel gyms) to find one you like (David Lloyd not included though I don't think)

lovingmyginandiphone Sun 29-Jan-17 12:59:13

I've always found steam beneficial and I have excessive mucus that clings to my lungs so the steam loosens it nicely.... my new consultant changed all my asthma meds which helped with my peak flow etc but the mucus doesn't clear unless I'm by the sea or spend time in the steam room where it opens my airways....

Haven't seen the pay as you go gyms, will have a look at what's available in this area! smile

CountFosco Sun 29-Jan-17 13:13:22

You've said you're already walking as much as you can, have you tried cycling, it's low impact and free if you already have a bike. The other option to get you moving is doing some exercise videos on youtube. If yoga is your thing then there's a lot of love for Yoga with Adriene over on the Yoga forum and it's free so worth a try. Don't start with the Revolution series she's doing at the moment, search for yoga for beginners videos and then try Yoga Camp. It would help alleviate the symptoms of a lot of your health issues since it builds core strength and is good for stress.

But otherwise I'd go with your work gym and see how bad it is with students before looking at more expensive options. If the pool is in lanes then you might have the slow lane to yourself while the students bomb up and down in the fast lane!

Sympathy with the diet, my sister has a bowel condition and when she has a flare up her fibre intake has to go way down. But as I'm sure you know there are some thing you'll be able to tolerate more than others so it's still worthwhile trying to improve your diet as much as possible within the constrains of your health condition.

lovingmyginandiphone Sun 29-Jan-17 14:21:46

Thanks, tried cycling as we have bikes you can you between sites. It my balance is awful and the other problem is being next to the roads with pollution.... or trees! I did contemplate an adult scooter but am wary of that for the same reason.

I usually try and walk to work (20-25 mins) but when I do I spend all day hacking up gunk so that is limited to 2-3 days and the other days I catch the bus down. Hence why I think if I could use a treadmill inside it would be better, or a stationery bike that I won't fall off!

I walk a lot around the buildings at work in between tasks and usually rack up 8,000-14,000 steps. I have also been known to March on the step at home watching game of thrones and that takes me up to 19,000-25,000 steps.

I do like yoga and really must try and get into the habit of that, I'll have a look on the boards! smile

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