Fitness Articles

10 Fitness Items to Splurge and Save On

Tips to Save on Workout Accessories

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Save: 5 Fitness Items Worth Buying on the Cheap
There's no point spending extra money if you don't have to. Look for deals on the following fitness items, and you won't go wrong, but will save a lot!
  1. Dumbbells. Dumbbells are pretty much dumbbells. Sure, you can spend extra money to get them plastic-coated in pretty colors or cool looking shapes, but if your budget is tight, the basic dumbbells will work just fine!

  2. Workout Apparel. Nowadays there is so much workout apparel on the market that's affordable and high in quality. The key is either buying the big name brands on clearance or purchasing the smaller-named brands at discount stores. Both Walmart and Target sell high quality technical shorts, shirts and even socks for low prices.

  3. Small Fitness Accessories. There are so many little fitness toys out there. From resistance bands to medicine balls to yoga blocks and Pilates circles, you could spend a whole paycheck on just workout add-ons if you wanted to. When buying these little extras, start cheap. If you find that—after a few months of using it—you really love and use a particular fitness accessory all the time, then you can invest in a better quality version of it (and even then, you may decide that you don't need to!).

  4. Heart Rate Monitor. Heart rate monitors can get pricey in a hurry. However, most of the really expensive ones demand a higher price point because of advanced features (many of which the average exerciser isn't likely to use). As long as it has a chest strap, a timer, and a way for you to customize your calorie burn by entering your sex, age and weight, you should be good!

  5. Yoga Mat. Hardcore yogis may disagree on this one, but if you're someone who casually practices yoga once or twice a week or if you just want a non-slip mat for stretching at home, don't bother spending more than $25 on a yoga mat. Even the cheaper mats should last you several years or more with regular use. And by then, you'll have a better idea if it's worth splurging on a fancier mat.

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About The Author

Jennipher Walters Jennipher Walters
Jenn is the CEO and co-founder of the healthy living websites FitBottomeGirls.com, FitBottomedMamas.com and FitBottomedEats.com. A certified personal trainer, health coach and group exercise instructor, she also holds an MA in health journalism and is the author of The Fit Bottomed Girls Anti-Diet book (Random House, 2014).

See all of Jenn's articles.

Member Comments

  • I had shoes that wore out quickly they where a top brand supposedly they where best. So i went back after getting major blisters and lots of cramps. The new shoes where brooks and cost me over a hundred and now no blisters and cramps. I am able to walk close to twenty thousand steps a day . Its great to get out and walk. The gym is expensive but if i chose to get into one i would only pay for one that has a track good equipment and offer water fitness. - 12/6/2013 10:23:45 PM
  • I still think its a better deal when buying free weights to buy handles AND plates as opposed to buying fixed weight dumbells. - 9/10/2013 8:52:29 PM
  • Sometimes when you buy the more expensive clothing or equipment what you're paying them for is the expensive advertising and marketing campaign that convinced you that their product is better. But sometimes the more expensive one is better. You have to do some digging to find out, but don't just assume that the more expensive one is better.

    I don't see the point in treadmills and stationary bicycles. Why not just take a walk or ride a bike outside? I do it all year and I live in Nebraska (you know, hot and humid in the summer and cold and snowy in the winter). Even inside you can run up and down stairs and that kind of thing. All exercise develops some kind of skill, and skill at walking or running over various terrains is infinitely more useful than skill at walking on a treadmill. The same thing applies to bicycling, and it might even save you some money on gasoline. And then there's the Vitamin D you get from not being a shut-in... - 9/10/2013 9:31:13 AM
  • Tracking 10,000 steps a day you need a pedometer. I agree with buying a better HRM as I did buy two cheap ones which wasted money.

    I think a Kettlebell should be added but a small on you will outgrow. Mine is 12k (26 lbs) a little on the heavy side but a good workout. - 4/20/2013 3:51:05 AM
  • Not sure I agree on spending money on the home cardio machines. Gym memberships can be under 20 bucks a month, so the money spent to get a decent piece of home equipment can be years at a gym. - 2/12/2013 8:26:28 AM
  • I have found that you can get fitness gear on the cheap at discount stores all over the place. Many of the items are name brand goods. I just got myself a yoga mat last week at Ross on sale for under $10. Great buy and works great too.
    I agree about getting good shoes. If you don't get a pair that fits right and is the right kind, you can hurt yourself. But it is not always necessary to spend a lot for them.
    - 2/12/2013 1:05:55 AM
  • I disagree with this article. Quality and the price of all of these products are different things. My best running shoes were the cheapest I've ever bought and the worst aerobic shoes were quite pricey Nike's. When buying a sports bra, try it on and jump around. Read the reviews, check the quality etc. Some of the high-price stuff is really overrated and there's no actual difference if you compare the quality. - 12/15/2012 4:50:14 PM
  • Quality shoes are essential. - 10/28/2012 1:42:50 PM
  • I've saved a ton by keeping an eye out at Marshalls, Ross and TJMaxx for fitness gear. I"ve not only gotten great workout clothes there (New Balance, UnderArmour and so on) on the cheap, but also weight lifting gloves, a foam roller, yoga mat, knee brace, medicine ball and probably some other stuff I'm not thinking of right now. - 10/28/2012 11:42:48 AM
  • I will second the suggestion about a good sports bra! What a difference it makes! - 10/28/2012 8:56:54 AM
  • ALDEBARANIAN
    Hmm. Inherited my stationary bike. Bought my TotalGym on sale. Bought my weights and bench used. Got the heart monitor when my old watch died, on sale. Got the pedometer on sale from the Spark Store. Now, getting used to using them, but after the first 50#, the weight doesn't seem to want to come off. *Sigh* Getting in shape takes time and work! - 10/23/2012 7:47:04 PM
  • Good sound advise! - 10/23/2012 2:55:22 PM
  • I have went cheap on the shoes before, and paid the price later. Won't do that again! - 10/23/2012 11:18:22 AM
  • FITFOREVER82
    Like the article... thanks! I purchased a great versatile for my home gym for a great price, it doesn't take up alot of space and I can do a ton of exercies with it - love my lebert equalizer. use it for cardio, agility and strength training (i love my dips and pull ups on it!). - 10/23/2012 9:35:14 AM
  • Good blog topic! I do not skimp on footwear because I wear through shoes in six months or earlier even though I use them only in the gym. My second most widely used item is my foam roller because I ache daily from my workouts. I am done with pedometers because every one I owned broke and besides the gym equipment gives some indication of how much I have exercised. - 10/23/2012 7:23:57 AM
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