On the night of December 31 every year, pubs and restaurants all over the world see an unprecedented rush. Somehow, people manage to recover from the festivities of the previous night and the next day. it's the turn of the gymnasiums to see a huge crowd of people lining up. 

Source: Lil'sGym

Losing extra weight and getting back in shape is everybody's favourite new year resolution. If you are also one of those people who have planned to finally make 2017 the year to get in shape by signing up for a gym membership on the first day of the year, here's some advice for you: Think hard.

Source: Imgur/ByMsnuQ

No, I am not asking you to give up on your aspirations of getting a toned body. All I am saying is do not get a gym membership on an impulse.

First of all, it is way too expensive.

Source: FitnessPatterns

In a city like Delhi, gym memberships usually cost around ₹1000 - ₹5000 a month. Most of the gyms though, would try to lure you in with an annual membership, where you might save up a grand or so but still end up forking out anything between ₹12000 - ₹50000. Just try to imagine what all you can do with that amount of money. 

Even if you want to spend that on your fitness, just get some exercise equipment for your home. A doorway, pull up rod, some weights or dumbells. Getting some of these will be a one-time investment that will, most probably, last you a lifetime. There's more chance of using it when it is right there in your home and you don't have to go anywhere to access it. And then when you're at home, you no longer have to adhere to the gym timings. You can exercise whenever you want.

Source: ThoughtElevators

You may not fully use your gym membership anyway. 

Yes, that's right. You'll start off enthusiastically, diligently working out for the first few days. But here's the thing, working out a few days does not give any results. It takes time for a human body to go from 'flab' to 'fab'. And that is when most people lose the motivation. You'll start expecting quick results, and that is not going to happen. 

Soon, a week or two into the year, you will find yourself coming up with reasons not to go to the gym. The cold weather would make it harder to get out of the bed in the morning. Some days you'll find the exercise equipment too intimidating. Maybe you won't know what workouts to do. You'll never be short of excuses.

Source: SmartSnobs

But don't beat yourself up, there are a lot of alternatives available. 

You don't need fancy equipments for a fit body. You can exercise from the comfort of your house too. All you need are barely twenty minutes off your busy schedule, dedicated to some kind of an exercise. The biggest advantage of exercising at home is that you save a lot of time. A trip to the gym means driving there, some time in the locker room and then the time you actually workout. So it's no wonder people find it really hard to do it regularly. So, in terms of both time and money, working out at home does help you save a lot. 

Another advantage of working out at home is that you can concentrate a lot better. There are no people around. So you can go about your own exercises without getting distracted. Also, some people find it easier to work out when there are no eyes looking at them, something that can happen at home only.

Source: Tumblr

And if you are a beginner and think you need direction and guidance to get going, use the internet. YouTube is filled with free tutorials and classes based on your specific needs and requirements. From yoga to cardio to strength training, everything is just a google search away. 

If you want to take your workout to the next level, try exercising out in the open. 

Source: EhsaasMagazine

It might be a tough ask to go out in winter, but with spring and summer coming up, you might want to take advantage of the weather. The sun, the wind, the fresh air, that'll really add something to your workout. Working out outside would actually make you feel a lot better. You will find it easier to stick to this kind of regime because it is more enjoyable than slogging it out at the gym. Just a good morning jog in the nature would do your body, and mind, a world of good. And it's totally free.

Source: Qolddesign

So, even if one of your resolutions for 2017 is losing weight or getting back in shape, think before you sign up for that gym membership. It entails a lot of hard work and persistence, and do not expect quick results. Gym may not be your answer if your diet and other activities are not in sync. Therefore, if you do decide to spend your hard earned money on trying to shift to a healthier lifestyle, be prepared for a complete overhaul and tell yourself you can do it.