Philadelphia Health Events and Pop-Up Workouts

health events free workouts

All the health events in December 2018 that you need to know about. Photograph courtesy Fairmount Park Conservancy.


As the holiday season rapidly approaches, it’s best to keep up your healthy habits before the weather — and all the yummy holiday food — puts your workout motivation at an all-time low. The December weather may have you singing “Baby It’s Cold Outside,” but with the health events and free workouts lined up this month, it’ll be hard to stay home. From mindful movement at Amrita to a holiday lights run in South Philly, the month of December is shaping up to be a great way to end the year. Read on to learn more about all of the December happenings in and around Philly.

Saturday, December 1st

FREE SANSOM STREET DONUT RUN What’s a better way to end a three-mile run than with Federal Donuts? Philadelphia Runner is hosting their final Donut Run of the year, and there is no reason to miss out. The best part: It’s free and no pre-registration is required — just show up the Philadelphia Runner’s Center City location. Free, 9 a.m.

CHARGE WORKOUT Charge Performance and Wellness is hosting a workout to support Back on my Feet (BOMF), a Philly-based nonprofit uses running and community as a way to support individuals transitioning homelessness to independence. In addition to the hour and a half workout, Charge will also give you a free class to return and try another workout. Get your ticket here (100 percent of proceeds will go to BOMF). $25, 10 a.m.

FREE ROCKY 50K  If you’ve always wanted to dress up like Rocky Balboa and run the Philly streets, you’re in luck. The Rocky 50K Fat Ass Run is a kinda-sorta ultra-marathon that you have no obligation to finish because of their “No Fees, No Awards, No Aid, No Wimps” motto. A 50K race is about 31 miles; but you can opt out whenever because its free. This is definitely the run for you if you just want to test out the long distance waters. Free and no pre-registration required, 7 a.m.

JINGLE BELL RUN  Celebrate the holidays by completing a 5K and running for a cure. The Arthritis Foundation is hosting their Jingle Bell Run to raise funds and awareness. The race takes place at The Navy Yard in South Philly and 100 percent of your registration fee and fundraising efforts go to the cause. Get your tickets here. $45, 8 a.m.

Sunday, December 2nd

GRACIE BARRA WOMEN’S KICKBOXING Go into the New Year feeling like a stronger you! The 60-minute, full-body workout at the Gracie Barra School will incorporate the art of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu and mixed martial arts, all while sharing self-defense tips from women. No martial arts experience required. Head over the bridge to Lawrenceville for the class. Register here. $15, 9:30 a.m. 

FREE BPM X LULULEMON  BPM Fitness is bringing a Community Boot Camp out to Lululemon University City, and you can come prepared to sweat it out while getting a killer full-body workout with three BPM coaches. Can’t make it? Good news! BPM is hosting a second free workout at the same time, same location on Sunday, December 9th.  The event is free and you can let them know you’re attending by sending a brief email here. Free, 11 a.m.

Friday, December 7th

80s WORKOUT Go back into time and get a totally tubular workout in the process. At Maha Yoga on Sansom Street, Teagan Schweitzer will lead the class in an 80s-themed workout. Eighties workout attire is definitely encouraged (i.e. leg warmers and scrunchies), but you can also come in modern attire as well. Register here. $15 early bird, $20 day-of, 7 p.m.

FRISKY FOR THE HOLIDAYS Philly Dance Fitness is hosting their weekly “Frisky Friday” series with a holiday twist. The two-hour long striptease aerobics masterclass will feature sultry holiday tunes as well as a complimentary wine and chocolate tasting. Register here. $30, 8:30 p.m.

Saturday, December 8th

MINDFUL MOVEMENT THRU TRIBAL DRUMS If you’re in the market for a new kind of workout, you can find it at Amrita Yoga and Wellness. Taking from the ideology that rhythm is the universal language, RhythmetriX, led by instructor Max Young, is a high-intensity cardio workout by way of playing 30-inch tribal drums. Whether you’re a seasoned percussion professional or never have played a day in your life, you can take part and enjoy. Register here. $25 to $35, 2 p.m.

JINGLE JOG A scenic run around East Fairmount Park may be exactly what’s needed to get you in the holiday spirit. The five-mile guided run is hosted by the Fairmount Park Conservancy and focuses on the Historic Houses in the park. The run starts at Lloyd Hall (Boathouse Row) and ends at Lemon Hill Mansion. While you may not stop on the run to go inside any of the houses, a voucher will be provided to see any one of the six houses during the month of December. Participants will also receive a drink ticket to be redeemed at the Ice Bar at Lemon Hill Mansion. Register here. $25, 10:30 a.m.

TWERKNWINE Tone your bum with this “twerkout.” The ladies at TwerkNWine in Delaware County teach step-by-step routines that will help you let loose while also toning your derriere. If you need a little help relaxing, there is complimentary wine and refreshments to aid in the process. Call your friends up and make an afternoon of it. Register here. $10, 12:30 p.m.

RUDOLPH RUN Philadelphia Runner Manayunk is hosting their 5th Annual Rudolph Run, a three-mile fun run starting at the shop and ending at the shop with a trip .around the scenic Manayunk Canal in between. During the run, you’ll be able to test-drive some New Balance shoes, and after the race, enjoy treats at the store. Holiday attire is encouraged so be sure to break out that ugly Christmas sweater. If you happen to forget your holiday cheer, the Manayunk Development Corporation will be handing out jingle bells and red noses to everyone feeling festive. While this is a free event, donations of canned goods and other necessities will be accepted to spread some love to those in need. RSVP here. Free, 9 a.m.

Sunday, December 9th

FREE WORKOUT FOR WARMTH  Get a workout in while helping the children of Philadelphia stay warm this winter. Muscle by Maria is hosting a free outdoor workout at the Art Museum steps to benefit Northern Children’s Services and Cradles to Crayons. The workout is free with a donation, including items such as gently worn or new winter coats, scarves, hats, and gloves or children’s toys and books. Register here to see the complete list of donations. Free, 10 a.m.

Thursday, December 13th

FREE HOLIDAY LIGHTS RUN  The South Philly Striders and Fishtown Beer Runners have teamed up yet again for the 11th Annual South Philly Holiday Lights Run. The four-mile run sets off at Columbus Square and ends (naturally) at Victory Beer Hall at XFINITY Live! For those over 21, be sure to bring your ID, because after the race there will be $5 drink specials as well as a late-night menu available. Be sure to wear all the bells, lights, and whistles your heart desires as holiday attire is encouraged. The race is free, but participation in a food drive (as well as online donations) to benefit Philabundance, are encouraged. Free, 7 p.m.

Friday, December 14th

FREE YOGA AT THE DISCOVERY CENTER While the Discovery Center just opened in September, it’s already taking strides to improve health and wellness in the community. The center has partnered with the Yoga and Movement Sanctuary to bring free yoga classes to an unserved community. The class takes place overlooking a formerly hidden reservoir in East Fairmount Park. No pre-registration is required; just show up. Free, 10 a.m.

YIN YOGA + MASSAGE = MINI RETREAT Yoga? A massage? All under one roof? You have the instructors at Studio 34 Yoga in West Philadelphia to thank for that. End your week of holiday shopping (and stressing) right with a mini self-care retreat. Yin instructor, Amanda Sebald, will lead a passive and supportive Yin Yoga series while licensed massage therapist, Nicole Pepe, will apply massage techniques to further relieve the stress and tension. Don’t wait to register for this unique experience as there are only 12 slots. Register here. $25, 6 p.m.

Saturday, December 15th

FREE HOLIDAY HIIT FESTIVE FITNESS WORKOUT  Sweat Pink New Jersey has teamed up with Athleta Marlton for a holiday high-intensity interval training (HIIT) workout at the shop. Personal trainer De Bolton will lead a workout that you can do from anywhere — grandma’s house, your hotel room — throughout the holiday season. And after the class, you’ll score a discount on Athleta clothing. Register here. Free, 9 a.m.

JINGLE BELL BOOTCAMP CoreFitness is back again with their Jingle Bell Boot Camp at the Art Museum steps, and you’ll want to bring some canned goods. The cans will serve as resistance during class, and afterwards they’ll be donated to the Veterans Multi-Service Center. No registration is required, but an RSVP is appreciated. Register here. $20, 9 a.m.

FREE PHILLY MACE TRAINING Join Steel Mace Specialist and owner of Charge Performance and Wellness, Charles Scogna, for a free workout. This hour long exercise will feature a full-body, calorie burning and muscle toning workout. This free event will take place at Charge and while it is free, you will still need to sign up here. Free, 10 a.m.

Monday, December 17th

FREE RUN TO YOGA Philadelphia Runner Walnut is hosting their final Run to Yoga for the year and it’s a must-do. First, you’ll run to their University City shop, and once there, you’ll partake in a yoga sesh (two for one! Woohoo!). No need to register, but bring your mat. Free, 6 p.m.

Friday, December 21st

SLAYBELLS Three Queens Yoga wants you to really slay this holiday season. Instructor, Adriana Adele, will empower you with her holiday edition of her signature SLAY! Class. Of course the workout will be serenaded by the sounds of Beyonce, Rihanna, Mariah Carey, and Lizzo. There will be featured raffles and everyone who plans on attending is asked to bring a gently worn coat to donate. Register here.  $35, 6:30 p.m.

Let’s get social! Join Be Well Philly at: