Working out regularly isn’t always easy (especially when it’s cold out/it’s too hot out/there are tater tots that need eating/Netflix exists). Living on a budget – well, that can be tough, too. (Oh, the things you would do if you had more than $12.57 after the bills were paid!)
But being broke (or even if you’re simply saving all your pennies for a hovercraft, which we should all be doing) does force us to get smart about where our money goes – and where we can save it. To that end, here are six days worth of free workouts, from run groups and CrossFit to Bar Method and Volleyball. Because a lack of cash shouldn’t keep you from gettin’ ripped! (Or at least sweating heavily around other people.)
Tuesday, Thursday & Saturday: Winter Warriors
When: 6 p.m. Tuesdays and Thursdays, 9 a.m. Saturdays through April 1
Where: Meets at Fleet Feet Maine Running, 309 Marginal Way, Portland
While many of the Winter Warriors are experienced runners who’ve participated in this group for years, there were newcomers, too. Plenty of haven’t-run-in-years folks of all speeds and many walkers, too. So whatever your pace (or even if you’re not sure of your pace), you’re welcome here.
I checked it out: Be a Winter Warrior: Free run group with Fleet Feet Maine Running
Tuesday: Volleyball for All!
When: 6:15 to 8 p.m. first and third Tuesdays of the month
Where: First Baptist Church, 360 Canco Road, Portland
FMI: Volleyball for All Facebook group
It’s as informal as informal can be – just show up in comfortable clothes and you’ll be welcomed with open volleyball arms! The teams are switched up after every game, which means there’s more camaraderie building that competition. Haven’t played volleyball in decades? No problem.
I checked it out: Volleyball for All in Portland: It’s free & open to anyone who just wants to play some volleyball
Wednesday: Portland Sweat Project
When: 6:29 a.m. Wednesdays
Where: Various locations around Portland (follow them on Facebook to find out the location.
Starting your workout under the light of the moon is pretty badass. And you’ll get to watch the sun light up the morning sky, which is invigorating in its own right. And sure, it’s cold to start, but you won’t be cold for long. A few hill sprints and you’ll be shirking layers like no one’s business. Working out with a lively group of people helps, too. And Portland Sweat Project certainly has that.
I checked it out: Portland Sweat Project: Free Wednesday morning workouts worth waking up early for
Thursday: Old Port Pub Run
When: 6:15 p.m. Thursdays
Where: Meets at Liquid Riot Brewing Co., 250 Commercial Street, Portland
FMI: facebook.com/oldportpubrunME and twitter.com/oldportpubrun
This informal run group meets weekly year-round (yep, even in the winter) for a run through downtown Portland, the Eastern Prom and thereabouts. There’s generally a 3-mile and 5-mile option, depending who shows up each week and how ambitious everyone’s feeling. I’ve joined this group a couple of times (for what it’s worth, I’m not a very accomplished runner) and had a grand time because the camaraderie is excellent, the group is wonderfully welcoming, and after the run everyone heads into Liquid Riot for a beer. Good People + Beer = Motivation.
Friday & Saturday: Bar Method class
When: 5:30-6:30 p.m. Fridays and 12:30-1:30 p.m. Saturdays
Where: Bright Star World Dance, 108 High Street, Floor 3, Portland
“The Bar Method is a high intensity, low impact workout based on principles of ballet with some Pilates and yoga elements rolled in. You burn out small and large muscle groups and then stretch them to elongate and strengthen the body. First half of the class is spent at the bar doing intervals and strength work and the last half is spent in the center of the room for floor and core work.”
Saturday Community Class at CrossFit
When: Saturday mornings
Where: CrossFit locations all over the state
FMI: See below
If you’ve been wanting to give CrossFit a whirl, they make it easy by offering free community classes on Saturday mornings at most locations. No CrossFit experience is necessary, all levels of fitness are welcome, and you can attend once or every week (read: This isn’t a first-class-free thing. The class is free. Always). And don’t worry that you’ll be asked to squat 200 pounds or lift heavy weights over your head. The community classes aren’t like that. I checked out a community class at CrossFit Beacon last summer and we did things like planks, box jumps (or step ups), medicine ball tosses and, of course, running!
9:30 a.m. Saturdays, CrossFit BEACON, 341 Marginal Way, Portland
FMI: crossfitbeacon.com or 207-619-2322
9:30 a.m. Saturdays, Back Cove CrossFit, 1037 R Forest Avenue, Portland
FMI: www.backcovecrossfit.com or 207-797-2996
10 a.m. Saturdays, CrossFit Casco Bay, 1000 Congress Street, Portland
FMI: www.crossfitcascobay.com or 207-699-4080
Sunday: Sunday Runday
When: 8:30 a.m. Sundays
Where: Meets at Hilltop Coffee, 100 Congress St., Portland
Go for a Sunday run and get a coffee after with Sunday Runday – a regularly occurring run group from the Thick Quad Squad. Weekly runs range from 7-14 miles (you can certainly do less or more, depending on what you’re up for) and the routes get changed up to keep things lively. Everyone meets afterward back at Hilltop for coffee and baked goods.