Gym memberships can be expensive. The equipment, the trainer, and maybe the diet plan you invested in can all leave a big dent in your wallet. However, you don’t really need a treadmill or thousands of pounds in weights to get ripped. Just pick up your favorite jogging shoes and spend a few hours brisk walking or sprinting around open spaces near you. If you’re one of those people that care equally about the dollars you spend and the pounds you lose, here is a short list of places to visit in Cebu for the budget-minded health junkies.
There are many options for those who want to exercise on a budget, especially for tourists in Cebu island. Whether in the North or the South, if there is a park, mountain, or plaza, that’s good enough for a few laps. If you want to intensify your workout, it is still good to bring weights, jumping ropes, traffic cones, sports apparati, etc. Go to these places often, and the only thing you’ll be spending on is transportation, which could be less if you live nearby, or an upgrade for your equipment.
You can work out alone, or jog with some friends to compete for who’s more fit. These places are great for camaraderie as you can spend some time with the ones you care for, as well as meet new acquaintances. You can make your own schedule or your own workout based on what you feel you are capable of without worrying about expenses.
Cebu Business Park
CBP is already known as a popular nature park and business sector, but we bet you didn’t know that there is a great place to jog and work out that isn’t in the City Sports Club Cebu. There is an open space behind the Colegio de la Inmaculada Concepción that is a go-to spot for joggers, especially early in the morning.
The area consists of several oval-shaped lots that you can run around in. Most joggers run around the sidewalks while some do several exercises on the green grass. Due to the open space, you can even play sports like football, soccer, and frisbee.
It is strategically located at a walking distance to the Ayala Mall, where you can gift yourself with a shopping spree after a tough jogging session. The area also has several convenience stores if you want to have a quick snack.
If you are staying in a hotel near the Ayala Mall, accessibility is very easy. If you don’t, riding a Public Utility Vehicle to Ayala is a good way to get there.
However, the place is merely an open lot, and there isn’t a public restroom to change into your clothes after jogging. Luckily, if you own a personal vehicle, you can also park it nearby and change there if you have to. Don’t expect a lot of joggers in the evening, though, as this is not the best lit place in the evening.
Cebu City Sports Center
One of the biggest areas to jog in Cebu City, this place is home to a lot of sporting events, from soccer tournaments to Olympic tournaments. The Cebu City Sports Center, found at Osmeña Boulevard, is a large racetrack that is perfect for those who want to sprint like Usain Bolt.
Other than the large track, there is an open space for dance practices, a couple of basketball courts, some outdoor volleyball nets, nets for badminton, a boxing ring, a dance studio, and a big olympic-style swimming pool, making this one of the best places in Cebu for aspiring athletes.
This is also a very historic place in Cebu City, as it is where the grand showdown of the Sinulog Festival is held.
You can enter the Center through the big gate across the Asian College of Technology or the street next to the Police Station. You may have to present your ID and pay 10 pesos to get in.
Unfortunately, due to the quarantine protocols, the complex is currently closed as it is used as a station for the police officers handling the different quarantine checkpoints. At other times, the area is open 24 hours, with many joggers deciding to jog at night due to the powerful stadium lights illuminating the area.
Cebu South Coastal Road
If jogging on long highways is your thing, then challenge yourself to finish one of the longest ones — the Cebu South Coastal Road. Though not an exercise park like the first two that were mentioned on the list, this is still a very common place for those who want a good run.
Stretching two major cities, the CSCR is perfect for those who want a long momentum-filled sprint. This is good for an intense workout, especially if you are the type who likes to go on marathons. The long highway is famous for bikers who sweat it out and give their thighs a massive exercise.
This is a very popular place for bikers. In fact, the yearly Ironman tournament conducts the bike leg of the race in this area. You can also bike under the SRP Tunnel to experience a dark hallway that came out of a Batman film.
The local government has made several plans to improve the area with more establishments for anyone who is visiting Cebu. In the meantime, you can unwind after your long run at SM Seaside Cebu, one of the biggest malls in the country.
Similar to Cebu Business Park, there isn’t really a place to change after a long run, so if you wish to change clothes, you have to enter some of the establishments nearby. You can probably park in the open space outside the mall, so bringing your personal vehicle could be a good option. If you want to commute, though, you can ride a jeepney that passes by Barangay Mambaling, and start your run from there.
San Carlos Heights
Considering all the cheap places to work out in Cebu, there is a more obscure one, and probably the most intense. San Carlos Heights in Barangay Quiot is great for a long trek above a mountain. If you really want to test your stamina and condition yourself to the highest potential, then this is the place for you.
Because it is found in a mountainous area, it isn’t the easiest place to go to, but a tricycle ride at the Archdiocese of Our Lady of Lourdes in E. Sabellano Street will bring you there. If you want to go there personally, then you can drive up E. Sabellano to get there. You will know you made it when you arrive at the convenience store which is right next to it.
This is a subdivision with a lot of houses, but the climb is a great experience to sweat it out early in the morning. Since you are at a peak, it is also a great place to have an overlooking view of the city. You can consider San Carlos Heights as a mini Busay considering its beautiful landscape.
Working out in the Philippines is similar to the law of diminishing returns. The more you spend, the less you gain. If jogging, dancing, and lifting weights can be done at home, then you can surely do them in any of these places as well.
Cebu is not only home to beautiful oceans and forests. There are places to visit in Cebu that cater to your health and fitness needs. The best part is it’s one hell of a bargain.