Fit for Less

The new year is the health industry’s Boom Season. Everyone wants this to be the year they lose 25 pounds and keep it off; this is the year we’re cutting out soda and eating more greens.

But if you’re Young Without Money, it can seem like there are some serious obstacles to getting/staying healthy. Gym memberships seems too expensive. Yoga classes are for some reason scarily expensive. The food that actually came from the ground or some nearby trees is more expensive than Hot Pockets (and take way longer to prepare). So screw it, we’ll just keep the Netflix going and consume strange things like Takis to no end.

The cool thing about getting healthy is–it’s a bit easier than mass media would have us believe. Did you know that you can do these things called calisthenics and use your own body to make your body healthy? Yeah, this was news to me, too. And there’s actually a whole sphere of the internets devoted to making easy, quick, cheap yet healthy meals.

As it turns out, getting healthy is the same as getting your finances in order. You have to overcome ignorance, denial and indulgence. I’m gonna help you face the ignorance part to figure out how to afford to be healthy– overcoming the denial and indulgence part will require the reading of another health-based blog.

Working Out for Little to No Money:

1. Do calisthenics. Use your body as it’s own gym. There’s a whole range of exercises you can do at home with absolutely no equipment. You can check out books in the libs or do a Google or Youtube search. Personally, I’ve pinned workout on Pinterest. It helps to create a schedule of which exercises you’ll do on what day. Just 30 minutes will send you to bed sore in that awesome workout way.

2. Go running.

3. Get workout videos from the library or Youtube. You can find everything from P90x to yoga in all its forms to Pilates to Step Aerobics to Jazzercise (you get my drift) online or in the Libs. Follow the videos and be diligent and you’ll find your body in better shape in 4-6 weeks and your bank account will never know the difference!

4. Find the deals. Gyms around you right now are offering special deals for this special time– no sign up fees, special rates, etc. Do some research and find a gym near you that offers what you’re looking for and sign up now for their special deal.

5. You could do that thing where you take advantage of the free visits of all the gyms in your area, but that’s so much work and super awks.

Eat Healthy for Little to No Money:

The step before number one is: know what’s healthy.

1. Make a menu for the week. Seriously, it helps to know what you’re going to make yourself to eat for the week and then buy only that. Then when you’re hungry, you’ll have no option but to eat what you planned. Or be hungry and whine. Try to reuse items. Buy rice and make it three different ways– that’s three nights of a different rice dish, and leftovers= 6 meals. Whoa. Use meat sparingly, as it’s expensive, but when you do buy it, buy it in bulk and freeze the rest, then make new meals with it.

2. Have healthier snacks. Fresh or dried fruit. No-sugar granola. Popcorn. Yogurt. Veggies and hummus. Dark chocolate. Also, drink healthier. Try to cut out soda. Drink water! It’s free! This pin is helpful:

3. Buy what’s in season. Buy fruits and veggies that are on special and make special meals from that. Remember what I said about the rice in number 1?

4. Don’t overbuy. You’ll be surprised at how quickly stuff goes bad and then you will have wasted food and money.

5. Change your portions. Make them smaller and make your non-meat/dairy/bread portions bigger. Greens=good for you.

5. When you go out to eat with friends, don’t feel bad treating yourself!

6. Don’t eat fast food anymore. And by anymore, I mean try to limit it to once a week at least.

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2 thoughts on “Fit for Less

  1. Since Dave has to eat a lot, usually I’ll make a triple batch of spaghetti on Sunday and freeze the sauce for whenever we want it. It helps us out a lot when we want a good meal without a lot of cooking. And whenever I make it, I only have to buy the meat and the canned tomatoes since I already have all of the spices! Every time we go out, we split something so we don’t have to pay for 2 meals, or if we do, we always take back leftovers. We also make a rule that for our grocery list, if it isn’t on the list before we leave the house, we don’t buy it. This helps us to not deviate from the list or to overspend. Another great thing if you live in an apartment complex is to take advantage of their exercise room. We go there when we can and there usually aren’t very many people there.

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