There are lots of creative, low-cost ways to stay fit in Chattanooga. For those who prefer to work out indoors on a wide range of exercise equipment, here is a rundown of some of the most affordable gym memberships in the downtown area. More to come later on activities outside downtown.
3. Workout Anytime on Cherokee Blvd and at Northgate offers a $15 monthly membership fee to long-term customers. This works well if you know that you will be working out, consistently and frequently, at the same place, for a long period of time. A shorter term membership does cost more per month, though, so I don’t recomend this gym if it’s hard for you to afford a long-term membership or if your job or location could change, causing you to switch gyms. For the patron who works out every day, this provides the lowest per-workout cost as long as the workout only requires cardio and weights equipment. The gym offers no exercise classes, which is fine if that’s not what you’re into. It is open 24 hours. There is a personal trainer there sometimes during staffed hours, which run from 9 AM – 9 PM on weekdays and from 9 AM – 5 PM on weekends. Outside of these hours, you’re in the gym alone, or with whoever else works out at that time. Because of the gimmicks in the membership cost, the absence of trainers during the morning hours, and the fact that working out during unstaffed hours means being in the building alone, in a fully lit room, with floor to ceiling windows, on a low-traffic street, when it’s dark outside, I’d label this gym a low-cost-low-value option.
2. The Chattanooga YMCA Branches offer weights and cardio equipment, longer staffed hours (5 AM – 9 PM on weekdays, 6 AM to 6 PM on Saturdays, 1 PM – 6 PM on Sundays), and a regular schedule of exercise classes. Additionally, there are several branches of the Y, and one membership gains you access to all of them. In fact, it even gains you access to YMCAs in other cities, in case you have to travel. The monthly membership here can vary a lot depending on the customer, though, so it is difficult for me to quote you a price here. Your employer may have a partnership with the Y that subsudizes you membership if you go a certain number of times pe month. Additionally, if you are a senior citizen with Blie Cross/Blue Shield or another major health insurance provider, your Silver Sneakers membership may be covered by your insurance. If neither of these apply to you, the Y does offer financial aid for hopeful gymgoers who need it. This gym is higher cost and higher value.
1. The Chattanooga Fitness Center provides a decent selection of cardio machines and weight machines, and the only price is a $1 walk-in fee. This is certainly the lowest fee in the downtown area if you plan to work out less than four times each week. It also works well if you travel a lot or have unpredictable work commitments and your workout schedule varies from month to month; you don’t pay expensive membership fees during a month when you don’t spend much time at this gym. There are a decent selection of cardio and weights machines that will certainly satisfy the average gymgoer.
Squeeze extra value out of this deal by attending the gym’s regularly scheduled exercise classes, which are always included in the $1 fee. These class offerings, at no extra cost, are why this gym makes the top spot on my (albeit short, for now) list of the most affordable gyms in the downtown area. I’d definitely call this gym a low-cost-high-value option.