A reader has written in with a lot to say about gym memberships. Over the years readers have sent in many tips to keep fit without having to go to a gym:

• Walk or bike everywhere! It keeps you fit and saves on the expense of using the car. There are lots of good cycling tracks nowadays so make the most of them.

• Try tramping. You can enjoy the great outdoors, keep fit, and enjoy the company of others. Enquire at your local tramping club for upcoming outings

• Exercise on the lounge floor while watching TV. A few sit-ups and press-ups will help conceal those couch-potato bulges.

• Skip to keep fit. Make your own jump rope. A discarded piece of wiring cable about as thick as a pencil is ideal. Make two handles out of a block of wood or a piece of bamboo. If you think you don’t have the time to keep fit, try skipping while the adverts are on TV. (Tip – when skipping indoors watch out for household items as skipping seems to attract breakable objects!)

• Building muscles? You don’t need fancy weights – heft a tin of spaghetti in each hand or strap a big book to each ankle and lift away.