Goodbye spring and hello summer! For many of us, the approach of summer means barbeques, beaches and getting in shape. Once in a while you may feel moved to try that new cleanse you saw your favorite celebrity or athlete endorse, but keeping up with the latest diet fads and health trends can be hard on your wallet. Here are some quick tips to get healthy without damaging your bank account:
Get creative with your workout
How many times have you heard, "I don't have the money right now to join a gym?" Excuses, excuses! You don't need to be a gym member to get a productive workout. You can get creative with your workout by utilizing everyday items around the house as weights. Although lifting heavy books may look and feel silly, they serve the same purpose as free weights. Running outside in your neighborhood or nearby park is also a smart choice to get in a good cardio workout for free.
The most important piece of equipment you'll need to work out with is your own body. Research some workout routines that can be done anytime. Resistance workouts such as crunches, sit-ups, wall squats and lunges don't cost a dime and can be done anywhere.
Stay fit with technology
Trolling for savings online can also be a great way to cut down on expenses. Groupon and Living Social are great ways to find deals for yoga studios, kickboxing classes, equipment or workout clothes. Social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter also have some great coupons and special deals. You may be surprised to find how much money you can save by using hashtag searches to find offers relevant to you. Beware of your spending habits though; unnecessary expenses are still unnecessary, even if you got a deal.
If you have a smartphone, you'll also be able to take advantage of some completely free, health-promoting apps. Can't afford a personal trainer? No problem. There are plenty of free workout apps that lead you through routines and even reward you after a completed workout.
Diets don't have to be pricey
Believe it or not, you can eat quality food without making financial sacrifices. Inexpensive organic food can be found at farmers' markets or wholesale retailers like Costco. Turn down sugary juices and soda and invest in a water filter. Frozen fruits and veggies are also great healthy options that won't stray you too far from your budget.
Pack your lunch for the day. Instead of paying twelve bucks for a salad, buy your salad necessities in bulk and bring one with you. Not only will you have control over what goes into your meals, you'll be able to use that saved lunch money on other necessities.
Partner up with a buddy who is also ready to commit to staying fit on a budget. On days you're feeling lazy or unmotivated to make extra efforts for a healthier lifestyle, your buddy can push you and vice versa. Working out and eating right on a budget can seem like a lot of work. Having a support group not only makes the process more enjoyable, but is also a pretty useful motivational tactic.
A tight budget doesn't have to result in bad health choices, and a healthy lifestyle doesn't have to be a luxury that only the wealthy can enjoy. It's possible to get fit and stay fit without spending tons of money or falling into debt. Bottom line, you don't need to be wealthy to stay healthy.
About the author: Tresha Lim joined Credit Karma's team in October 2013 as a Member Support Specialist. She holds a BA in Economics from UC San Diego. Prior to joining Credit Karma, she worked as a sports information intern and is now diving into the financial tech industry. When she's not answering questions about all things Credit Karma, you can catch her cheering on her favorite sports teams.
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