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How to Maintain Your Fitness Without A Gym (Without Sacrificing Your Favorite Foods)

Maintaining your fitness without a gym may sound a bit outlandish, but it’s important you know how to.

The pandemic taught us that gyms closing isn't a faraway possibility. And more often than not, you may not have access to a gym.

Researchers looked at data from 15 million patients prior to the start of the pandemic. They then looked at weight changes for one year during the pandemic. And approximately 39% of patients gained weight over that course.

And I mean, that was to be expected right?

With gyms closing and people spending the majority of their time indoors. It was inevitable.

But, what if you had the knowledge to prevent that from happening to you?

What if I told you even if you didn’t have access to a gym you could still maintain your body weight and fitness?

In this blog post you’ll learn:

  • The foods you should avoid
  • The foods you should eat more of
  • Exercise alternatives if you don’t have access to a gym

The Food You Eat

Let’s get the most important aspect of maintaining a healthy body weight out of the way first.

Your diet is yourfrontline, super soldier and leader against weight gain.

Nobody can out-train a bad diet… not even Hercules.

Without getting too technical and wishy-washy with the nutrition stuff. I’d like to speak on this topic with more of a mindful approach.

Yes, if you wanted you could calculate your caloric maintenance level. And count your calories/macros. But we all live busy lives — so I’d like to break this down mindfully.

The Foods You Should Avoid

I really don’t think I need to tell you what foods to avoid. But I’m going to — because well, I like to be helpful.

As for foods to avoid — I would stay away from:

  • Fast food
  • Potato chips
  • Sugary snacks (E.g. candy, chocolate etc.)
  • Simple carbs (E.g. white pasta, white bread etc.)

    And full disclosure, I said to avoid these foods and not completely wipe them out.

We’ll talk about this more in a minute — but the key to having longevity with a diet is balance.

The Food You Should Eat

Now — let’s talk about foods you should try to consume to the best of your ability to maintain your fitness even without a gym.

There are three main types of macronutrients we should be consuming daily:

  • Fats
  • Carbs
  • Protein

But more specifically — good fats, complex carbs, and lean protein if possible.

Let me explain why in a quick and concise manner:

  • Good fats — monounsaturated fats and polyunsaturated fats fall under good fats. Both of which work to prevent heart disease.
  • Complex carbs — carbs are our main source of energy. Complex carbs contain essential vitamins and minerals for our body. They keep us full for longer periods, help control our cholesterol and improve bowel movement.
  • Lean protein — our body needs protein to repair our muscles. Lean protein sources have little to no fat making them an appealing candidate when you’re trying to maintain your weight.

    Some sources of good fats include:

  • Avocado
  • Nuts/Nut butter
  • Fatty fish
  • Eggs
  • Flax seeds and chia seeds
  • Olives and olive oil
  • Greek yogurt

Source of complex carbs include:

  • Oatmeal
  • Chickpeas
  • Sweet potatoes
  • %100 whole wheat bread
  • Quinoa
  • Whole wheat pasta
  • Brown rice

Sources of lean protein include:

  • Lean beef
  • Egg whites
  • Chicken/Turkey breast
  • Low-fat cottage cheese
  • Pork loin


Maintaining somewhat of a balance in your diet is crucial for long-term success.

So I’d encourage you to reward yourself every once in a while for your discipline especially if you’re following a strict diet plan.

Go ahead grab a burger and call up your favourite pizza joint. Reward yourself!

I personally like to do this on a high-calorie-burning day.

For me, that’s my leg day!

Exercises to do Without The Gym

And now for the second portion of what makes a healthy human being.


More specifically we’re going to talk about exercises you can do without access to a gym.

You heard me right.

You can get fit at home without equipment.

HIIT Workouts

Generally, a HIIT workout is a workout with short bursts of intense exercise with periods of rest or lower intensity exercise.

One of the many benefits of a HIIT workout is that it can be done anywhere.

Although… It would be rather strange to see someone doing burpees in the middle of a concert.

But I digress...

It offers a vast range of benefits including:

  • High amounts of calories burned in a short time frame
  • An increase in your metabolic rate hours after exercise
  • Can help you lose fat
  • Can reduce heart rate and blood pressure
  • Can reduce blood sugar
  • Can improve oxygen consumption

Some exercises that are often incorporated into HIIT workouts include:

  • Jumping jacks
  • Burpees (yuck)
  • Squats
  • High knees
  • Pushups

And so many more!

If you’d like someone to walk you through a HIIT workout — you can try a free HIIT workout from Yes.Fit by clicking here.

Bodyweight Exercises

Bodyweight exercises are a great alternative if you don’t have access to free weights.

Mayo clinic states that bodyweight exercises can actually be just as effective as using free weights or machines.

But what sort of bodyweight exercises can you do?

If I’m honest there’s a whole whack of them to choose from.

But to keep things simple and for your own examples sake here are a few good ones:

  • Planks
  • Situps
  • Calf raises
  • Lunges
  • Squats
  • Pushups
  • Pullups

And, there are a ton of variations to each of these exercises.

If you struggle with a normal pushup — try pushups on your knees.

Or if you have no problem with squats — try challenging yourself with the pistol squat.

Walking and/or Running

Walking or running is a great alternative to training in the gym. You won’t build muscle as effectively. But you’ll still engage your muscles and work up a decent heart rate to burn calories.

And the greatest part about it — you can do it anywhere. Whether you’re on a hike, or just out for a walk with your dog!

Incorporate it into your daily life to make it more natural and easy to stay consistent.

Bottom Line — How to Maintain Your Fitness Without A Gym

Your nutrition and exercise routine will play a crucial role in you staying in shape despite not having access to a gym.

Think of it like what a trainer is to a professional athlete. Sure if the trainer disappeared for a bit, the athlete may struggle to get things done.

But with enough discipline, dedication and execution the athlete could put in the work to succeed in whatever sport they’re competing in.

A gym is a tool that helps with your fitness — it’s not a necessity.

So, what are you waiting for?

If you are struggling to figure out your own routine. And you just can’t seem to get motivated and push yourself to do the work that needs to be done...

Click here to try one of Yes.Fits powerful exercise routines.

You’ll wish you had tried it earlier!

About the Author

Kyle Stevenson

Kyle is a Canadian health and fitness writer. He’s dedicated over 6 years to his own health and fitness. He loves being active, reading, self improvement and spending time with friends and family.

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