Leading A Healthy Lifestyle: It Can Cost You
Yikes! Do you feel like your attempts to live a healthy lifestyle are leaving you bankrupt? Gym memberships, workout clothes, workout gear, fresh fruits and vegetables, fish rich in omega 3's, organic items, grass fed meats, specialty items: it all adds up, and it adds up quickly.
What is a girl to do?
Don’t give up. Make a few changes that allow you to stay healthy without causing financial stress. After all, being fit and financially stressed is an oxymoron if I ever heard one. Here are a few ideas:
- Join a club with a month to month membership. Take off the summers when you can move your workout outdoors. This will not only save you cash, but the change of pace will invigorate your workouts. Hike, bike, run, play soccer with the kids.
- Join a wholesale club. Costco, for example, now carries some organic items, and they also carry some wild fish.
- Visit your local farmer's market or join a food co-op. The produce is fresh, tasty, and a bit more affordable than the fare at the supermarket.
- Take fitness classes at your local adult ed organization. These classes are cheap, especially in comparison to what you’d pay for a comparable class at a gym or studio. They tend to be introductory, so if you want to try out yoga or Pilates, this is a perfect way to do it. Just make sure the instructor is well credentialed and the level is right for you.
- Learn which foods give you the biggest bang for your buck. For example, beans are high in protein and fiber. Eggs are high in protein. Spinach is high in vitamin K and iron. All are good, cheap eats.
- Be flexible with your weekly menus. Buy meats and fish that are on special and prepare your meals around them.
- Grow the herbs you like to cook with. This can be a great activity to do with kids, and having fresh herbs at the ready will make your dishes taste better. It will also help you minimize salt and oil use.
- Forgo the gym membership altogether. Check out some exercise DVD's from the library and exercise in your living room.
- Hire a trainer to help you put together a personalized workout plan. Once you are comfortable with the routine, work out on your own. When you need help, encouragement, or more challenge, return to her for more.
Get together with friends for regular walks or runs. This is great for your emotional, as well as your physical, health. It will also help you stay on course.
A lot of living a healthy lifestyle on a budget requires a turn back to the basics. Enjoy the earth, the outdoors, the garden, the relationships you have with your children and friends. Make smart, healthy choices that your wallet can take. You may be surprised how invigorating it is.