I faked childbirth to get out of my gym membership.

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There are many lies I regret telling in my life. Some are small, some are large. Some I got caught out on, whereas others worked a charm. But when I look back on them all, the one that I remember the most is the time that I fictionalised the life of an infant and told someone I had just given birth just so I could get out of a gym membership.

And look, before you say anything, I want you to know that I’ve resigned myself to the fact that if there is, in fact, a Heaven and Hell awaiting me in the afterlife, I’m definitely making my way to the latter, okay? Because yeah, I lied a human into existence. But just know this: getting out of a gym contract is possibly the hardest thing you’ll ever do in your life.

how to cancel a gym membership

It's harder than campaigning for world peace, harder than saying no to McDonalds when you're drunk, and hell, I'd wager it's even harder than giving birth.

It all began when one afternoon I told some friends that after three years and minimal use, I was finally going to cancel my gym membership.

They warned me it would be hard to break away. That the ever-smiling, bouncing and upbeat beings who worked the desk were armed with strategies and tactics and confusing terminology to ensure that you and your money never left them.

But amongst the doom and gloom was one friend who said the secret to her recent cancellation was her baby.

"They were really understanding," she said calmly while we all looked at her and tried to scoop our jaws off the floor. "I didn't have to justify anything, they just let me go."

So with that, I made a call and informed an unknown stranger that I'd given birth to a child three weeks ago and would no longer have the time or inclination to visit the gym. That was it.


Listen to the gym membership fiasco on Mamamia Out Loud. Post continues... 

Jokes, that wasn't it.

The unknown stranger wanted to know my fake baby's name. And how old she was. And what the labour had been like. And how little Margot was sleeping. And if I was interested in working with a trainer to get my pre-fake-baby body (that didn't look that great to begin with) back.

With every word I spoke, the lie grew.

how to get out of a gym membership
Omg, look! It's fake me with my fake baby enjoying a gym workout! Source: iStock.

What kind of person lies about having a child, I thought while staring at the wall, desperate for the conversation to end.

Well, it turns out I do, because it bloody well worked.

After 10 full minutes of wrangling, I finally managed to get out of the useless money sucker that was my membership and was free from the hellish confrontational nightmare that was trying to be free. And oddly enough, no longer being bound to a gym actually made me want to exercise again, even without fake baby Margot in the stroller with me.

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