Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Treadmills Are Just Humongous Clothes Hangers

A couple of weeks ago, the New York Times' "Bucks" blog offered tips on how to get in shape without breaking the bank. Suggestions included:
In response, Matthew Thibeault of Urbana, Illinois proudly shared with the Times how he used Craigslist to assemble a dirt-cheap gym in his house. His online purchases included:
Okay. So the guy saved a bunch of money by not joining a big globo-gym (which folks are abandoning en masse anyway).

But given that the "Bucks" blog is supposed to help readers "Mak[e] the Most of [Their] Money," shouldn't it have pointed out that Thibeault wasted his $685?

After all, cardio equipment is unnecessary; in fact, chronic cardio is ineffective and counterproductive. And if you're on a budget, why bother with dumbbells when you can just lift your bodyweight? (Oh, right: So you can do endless bicep curls and triceps extensions in front of a mirror.)

A tip for Mr. Thibeault: If you really want to maximize your fitness while minimizing costs, sell off the stuff in your "Craigslist gym" (fine -- you can keep the dumbbells), and reallocate a small fraction of the proceeds to the purchase of a good jump rope ($10 - $40) and a pull-up bar ($20 - $35). Then, print out this list of bodyweight workouts. And do 'em.

Don't like that option? Here's another: Get yourself a kettlebell and use it.

Either way, you'll save another $600, free up valuable space in your house, and whip yourself into shape more efficiently and effectively than you ever will by TRUDGING ALONG ON A TREADMILL WHILE SURFING THE WEB.