Get fit for free in and around Didcot

Keeping fit can be an expensive business but there’s no need to spend a fortune on gym fees. Whilst there might be an initial outlay on clothes or equipment you can save money by keeping fit in Didcot with these suggestions:

1. Take part in Didcot parkrun

This is a free 5km run (or jog or walk) held on Ladygrove at 9am every Saturday morning, whatever the weather. All you need to bring is a barcode; register and print via the parkrun website.

If you’re just starting out an alternative is to follow the NHS Couch to 5K plan which alternates running and walking. You can do it wherever and whenever it suits you.

2. Use the gym equipment

There are three sets of outdoor gym machines at Edmonds Park in Didcot. Make yourself a circuit and run between them. Tip: take along a towel to wipe them down, particularly after rain.

The Ladygrove Loop (AKA the yellow brick road) is a 4km circuit for running or walking interspersed with gym and play equipment.

3. Become a conservation volunteer

Earth Trust run a Friday conservation group. Build up a sweat chopping, digging and clearing at one of the four reserves they look after (including Mowbray Field). If you’re not free on a weekday Abingdon Green Gym meets on Saturday mornings.

4. Walk, don’t drive

Avoid car parking and traffic queues by choosing to walk wherever you go in Didcot. Of course there are times when you need to drive, but the town is still small enough to get around on foot. Make it a brisk walk to get the best health benefits.

5. Organise a team game

A great summer option. Gather friends, family and neighbours and head to your nearest park for a game of rounders. Or football. Or Frisbee.

6. Be a volunteer gardener

Energetic gardening can be a great way to get fit. If you don’t have your own garden why not help someone else with theirs? Perhaps that of an elderly neighbour or at one of the primary schools – just ask!

Alternatively Sustainable Didcot have a community allotment and welcome help at their group gardening session (held once a month on Sunday mornings). Pop over to their website for more info.

7. Go for a bike ride

Popular routes include the old Railway Line between Didcot and Upton (off road, suitable for children) and the Sustrans routes between Didcot and Wantage, Abingdon or Oxford.

Mountain bikers will enjoy the Ridgeway; be prepared for the steep hill leaving Upton!

8. Skate

Take your skateboard or scooter along to the skate parks on Ladygrove and Great Western Parks. Open to all but probably best suited to the younger generation….

9. Watch Youtube

Perhaps not a suggestion you were expecting. From Yoga with Adriene to a HIIT workout with Joe Wicks to a 10 minute British Heart Foundation living room workout there are plenty of fitness videos on YouTube. Exercise in the comfort of your own home; you can even wear your PJs!

10. Play tennis

There are free tennis courts at Edmonds and Ladygrove parks. You’ll often need to queue for a court around Wimbledon time, but they’re almost always available in the depths of winter.

I hope this list has given you some ideas. Do you have any other suggestions?

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