5 Tips for Working Out Without Breaking the Bank

When you think of getting fit and healthy, you don’t have to also see lots of dollar signs. There are ways to be healthy, get fit, and reach your goals without breaking the bank. Check out my 5 tips below:
5 tips for working out without breaking the bank

1.) Really do some thinking about your gym membership.

If you go to your gym 4 times a week and use multiple pieces of equipment, the pool, the childcare, etc. then you should probably stick with it. But, if you go to the gym 3 times a month, or only use it for the treadmill, then maybe you should consider alternative means of exercise. If you only go to the gym for a treadmill, consider buying one for your home. You can find used ones on craigslist, or at a second hand fitness equipment store. If  you lift lighter hand weights, maybe buy a set or two of lighter and heavier weights and a resistance band. If you love yoga but cringe at the thought of forking over a high amount for a month at a studio, maybe buy a mat and download some free yoga videos from the internet.

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2.) Set a budget for races and make finding good/cheaper ones a game.

Let’s face it, racing, especially destination racing, can be pricey! One option is to set a yearly or quarterly racing budget that includes not just entry fees but also what you would spend at a hotel or on transportation, food etc. as well. A lot of times, you can find fun races that aren’t publicized on the big race websites if you do a little digging (hello Google!)  Trying to fit races into your budget is like putting together a puzzle, and can be fun if you are a planner like me. Also, try to find things to help your budget, like run a destination race close to where your aunt lives, and ask if you can spend the night at her house to save money on a hotel. Yes, you may end up sleeping on her couch with a cat on your face, but better than forking out 150+ dollars for a hotel room. Maybe you can find a friend online running the same race as you and share a hotel, or a cab from the airport. Every little bit helps!

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3.) Think of things around your house that could be considered cross training

Look around you, there are plenty of things you could probably do or that NEED to be done that would work up a sweat and be considered cross training. Some things to do are work in the flowerbeds pulling weeds, scrubbing wood floors on your hands and knees, raking leaves, wiping down baseboards, painting your dining room, scrubbing the shelves in your refrigerator (no…I am not listing all the things I need to do…yeah…of course not). Not only will you work up a sweat, but your house will look awesome! Put on some music and maybe add in some lunges or squats as you go.

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Painting a fence counts, too!

4.) Be Social and know your city.

If you did a little research, you may find a hiking trail you didn’t know about, or a walking club for moms that meets every Tuesday morning. Being in the know will help you to make decisions that are right for you and your family. Do you know an elderly lady with a big dog that needs some exercise? Volunteer your time to get to know her and her dog and then take it (the dog, not the old lady) for a run. Introduce yourself to the neighbor who just moved in and ask if they want to go on a walk around downtown with you and you can point out things like the best stores, restaurants, etc. as you go to help them learn their new town. Getting exercise but also helping out someone else makes you feel good. Bonus points!

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I found a trail!

5.) Don’t spend a fortune on fitness gear.

This one is hard for me because I love cute running gear! Wait for sales, or free shipping for online products. Sometimes you can find affiliates who are offering discounts on products you love online. Buy the model that is not in production anymore and they are usually cheaper (for shoes). I also take good care of my fitness gear. I wash it every time I sweat in it (totally can’t imagine re wearing sweaty workout gear. ew.) I hang dry everything, and it lasts a long time. Also, when people ask what to get me for Christmas/Birthday, I tell them running gear,  or a running store gift card.

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QOTD: What is your best fitness on a budget tip?

Grocery Shopping on a Budget

 

A big thanks to those of you that gave input on other ideas to help you to be physically healthy on a budget! Seems like I have a lot of lurkey lurkers these days. Come on out and say hi people! I don’t bite…unless I’m REALLY hungry! (This post will make you REALLY hungry!)

So, yesterday’s post was all about being fit on a budget. Today, as another follow up to the Fit Blog chat, I thought we would talk about food. I am going to start by being totally honest with you. In case you haven’t noticed…I am not a foodie. *gasp* I know, I know. There is a reason I don’t blog about my food (aside from an occasional recipe.) While I like to think I maintain a healthy balance and eat well, some probably wouldn’t agree. For starters, I eat meat. YES you heard me, RED MEAT. Not all the time, but I do. and it’s good. and I am ok with that. and I know you aren’t supposed to start a sentence with and, and you are supposed to start one with a capital letter. It’s ok, it’s my blog and I shall do as I please. I also have sweets everyday, mainly chocolate. I love my sweet tea, too (on the weekends.)

Now that the grammar police are after me, let me get to my point. What kind of fun would life me without chocolate, or cupcakes, or pasta in alfredo sauce every now and then? Not so much in this girl’s opinion. So, When I discuss healthy eating on a budget, it may look a little different than some people’s version of healthy eating on a budget. But, stay with me. These principles can help you even if you don’t eat just like me. If you don’t eat like me, that’s cool, too. Your choice! Not saying it’s good/bad/awesome/stupid. I admire food bloggers because I could never do it.  I just want to be clear that I never claimed to be a food blogger.

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1.) Make a list

Sounds so simple, but is so complicated in real life. It’s so tempting to see the newest thing, or something that looks so yummy because you are hungry (my next point.) Unless it’s something you truly forgot to put on your list and need to get for a recipe, etc. stick to the list. It will stop you from impulse buying!

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2.) Don’t grocery shop on an empty stomach

This is a pitfall for me. When I shop hungry, EVERYTHING looks good and I buy way more food than planned or necessary. This leads to going over budget, food going bad in the refrigerator because I simply cannot consume it all before it goes bad, etc.

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3.) COUPONS and sale papers!

There is a coupon craze happening right now, and I like it! I always clip coupons. Yes, a lot of them are for processed foods, but not all. I can usually find coupons on things like yogurt, butter, cheese, cereal, etc. Also, check manufacturers websites for coupons of mailing lists for coupons. Be sure to get the most bang for your buck with coupons. If you have a coupon for something AND wait until it’s on sale then you can save a lot. Also, stock up a little bit if you can, but not like the creepy people who turn their basements into a panty. weird.

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4.) Make things from scratch

Yes, it takes more time and effort. This one is a judgment call if your time is more valuable to you, or if you are a bad cook. Pre made or packaged things are generally more expensive, but also more convenient.

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5.) Buy in Bulk

This ties in with the coupon one a little bit. Be sure not to be wasteful though! If you have something like a Sams club, etc. near you then take advantage! My family gets great steals from there all the time in bulk and for a great price. You just have to do a little research and math. (Once again, judgment call. If you got a D in math, you may want to skip this on.)

Bottom line in my book is plan ahead. if you make a plan, have a list and coupons, know what is on sale, and shop after eating, I think you are headed in the right direction! Like I stated before, I am by no means an expert in the food department, these are just a few simple tricks that have helped me stay within my budget and shop for food the smart way.

QOTD: What do you do to save money on food while still maintaining a healthy lifestyle?

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*all of the above pictures are from dining in Disneyworld Smile