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The Anti-Gym Guide to Getting Fit in NYC this New Year   blog image

The Anti-Gym Guide to Getting Fit in NYC this New Year

December 12 2022

Starting a New Year and joining the gym go hand in hand, but over 90% of people who purchase gym memberships in January will leave within three months.

In theory, gyms are great. Heated or cooled, everything you need is in one place, there’s one on almost every block – but for some people, they don’t work.

Everyone has their own reason for getting fit in the New Year, but when you live in the city and hate the gym, you can feel your options are restricted.

But this is New York. Want to kayak? To rock climb? Snowboard?

Despite New York being an urban center, you can do all three right here in the heart of Manhattan.

Whether you live here or you’re just visiting and don’t want to break your New Year’s resolutions during a vacation, there are plenty of alternatives to the gym in the Big Apple.

person kayaks in the water with the statue of Liberty and the Manhattan skyline in the background

Extreme Sports

Kayakers and SUP boarders head into the Hudson all year round to keep fit, and kayak hire is readily available (more details here). So if you’re looking for a unique view of the city skyline, hit the water.

Snowboarding and skiing can be enjoyed upstate but traveling that far isn’t always possible. In the heart of Manhattan, you can find indoor ski slopes in multiple locations, and there’s nothing like hitting the slopes to kickstart your new health routine.

Walking and Running

Walking is said to be the most underrated exercise, yet many studies show that increasing your step count can drastically improve your physical and mental health. It’s easy to jump off the subway and walk the last few blocks to the office or take the steps instead of the elevator, but if you want to substantially increase your steps, New York is home to some beautiful walks in the heart of the city.

Central Park has 58 miles of hiking trails, including both paved areas and unpathed trails, that vary in difficulty levels. While Riverside Park and Hudson River Park also offer miles of pathed pathways to explore.

Woman cycles in the sunshine, beside benches on the Hudson river with the new york sky line in the background


It’s no secret that New York and traffic have a love-hate relationship – and other than public transport, often the only way to avoid rush hour is by bike. Free to use, easy to store, and a great way to keep fit, bicycling is a great way to improve your commute and improve your health at the same time.

If you’re looking for a hotel in the heart of Manhattan, the Hotel Beacon is steps away from some of the city’s biggest attractions, including Broadway and Central Park.