Gym memberships open up access to an array of exercise options. In past years, gyms have gone above and beyond the basic “weight room and machine” combo in a bid to value add and attract more members. However, these gym memberships are expensive, and almost always require a contract that runs for 12 months – or more!

It’s a wonder, then, that some people don’t seem to maximise their gym memberships. Here are five expensive mistakes you may be guilty of.

1. Paying for comfort cardio

If you’re going to pay SGD200 a month to go make yourself feel better by doing cardio on a treadmill, you’re truly burning cash. Are you guilty of being one of those who regularly go into the gym just to run for an hour? You’re essentially paying for a run that could be done for free outside. You should be maximising the other equipment that you’re also paying for. If you’re unsure how to use them, approach any trainers or check out online videos for some directions.

However, if you’re seriously only interested in jogging, then lace up your shoes and go run in the park at no cost to you.

2. Going 2-3 times a week

Exercising regularly is great, and being consistent is key. But if you’re going to go to the gym only two to three times a week, you’re wasting a monumental amount of money.

You see, if you’re paying SGD200 a month to go to a gym 8-12 times a month, that’s SGD16 – SGD25 per visit. To put things in context, you can rent a bowling alley for an hour or pay for a rock climbing session with that money.

If you’re going to be a casual gym goer – which is okay – just use the ActiveSG community gyms that will set you back only SGD2.50 (Singapore Citizens) or $3.30 (non-citizens) per entry. Think about it: You could save ten times the amount of money by using ActiveSG Gyms!

3. Attending some classes only

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Everyone has that one activity they’re super good at. They love it, and they want to excel in that. That’s all fine and good, but if you’re paying hundreds of dollars every month just to attend a few specific classes and nothing else, then they’re really wasting your hard earned money. Gyms usually run a gamut of exercise classes, from Yoga classes to improve strength and flexibility, to HIIT classes that are meant to push you out of your comfort zone. If you’re not going to switch it up and attend a wider range of classes, then you’re just subsidising other people’s fitness regimes.

4. Skipping weights room

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Some women say that they don’t want to incorporate lifting into their training because they’re afraid of getting bulky, while others feel that the weight section is simply too intimidating. The first reason is demonstrably false, while the latter reason can be countered by bringing a friend who knows how to hit the weights safely. You aren’t just wasting money by skipping the weight section, you’re also wasting away the opportunity to get strong, look lean, and achieve that firm body you’ve always wanted.

5. Not working every muscle group every time

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While there is a philosophy that endorses the concept of cycling through muscle groups every time you work out to avoid fatigue, most of us don’t push our muscles to failure at the gym or workout enough to warrant rest days for specific muscles. Some people will specifically work on their legs or their core on a specific day, but you’ll notice that the people who manage to shed weight quickly and keep it off successfully are the ones that work the entire body. You can consider starting your gym session with some cardio, then going for a full body strength workout to build lean muscle for fat burning.