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(This week, I partnered up with Ayana Frierson a fitness guru for a guest post. Enjoy!)
Fitness and healthy living has become widespread in today’s society.
People are becoming more conscious of what they are eating and much more active. While it is great that living a healthy lifestyle is now popular, it has also simultaneously become trendy, commercialized, and marketable, and this has made it hard for some to afford this way of living.
I too struggled with the challenge of affording a healthy lifestyle. Within my first year out of college, I gained over 20 pounds and quickly became unhappy with my appearance.
As I stepped further into adulthood, I began to realize that I wanted to be fit and live well. At the time, I was on a tight budget, so I devised a financial plan in order to attain my fitness goals. It all came down to three key areas that I needed to attribute my funds.
Proper attire is very necessary for an efficient workout but let’s face it, no one wants to spend $75 on leggings and another $120 on shoes. I did two things to conquer cost in this area:
Purchased off brands – Off brand does not automatically mean bad quality. The fabric and fit is actually just as good as the name brand clothing but for half the price.
Kid Sized Shoes – Shoes are critical to a workout and the wrong pair can lead to serious injuries. Shopping for athletic shoes in boys sizes can cut down the price for name brand shoes significantly. Another option is to raid the sales section in department stores or a sporting goods store in your area.
Working out is obviously an important component of a healthy lifestyle, but paying for a workout can be problematic. I found a few ways to avoid paying those hefty fees while staying on track with my fitness goals:
Local Gym Membership – The monthly fees at these gyms are likely to be less expensive than well-known fitness branches it will have all of the basic equipment you need for your workouts. I chose to join a local gym and got away with paying only $10 a month.
Employer Perks – One of my goals for my fitness journey was to increase my flexibility and my company just so happened to host free yoga sessions every Tuesday for all employees.
Many companies provide benefits and support for healthy living, such as discounted gym memberships or free access on-site fitness facilities. Look into your benefits package and see what type of perks your company has to offer.
Home Workouts – Working out at home by far is underestimated but it can be very effective, convenient and affordable. I prefer this option at times in order to beat the crowds at the gym.
Dailyburn.com has become a popular resource and costs only $12.95 per month, and provides access 24/7 to a host of different workouts. Youtube.com is also a great resource and has plenty of workout videos performed by actual professionals, all for free!
This is the most important aspect of living healthy that can easily become expensive, but I avoided added costs with one simple adjustment:
Going Grocery Shopping – Buying groceries and making your own food is much more budget friendly and healthier than eating out at even the healthiest of places. The average meal while dining out for an evening can cost anywhere between $10 – $15, but that same amount can be used to purchase a family pack of chicken breasts that would last for the better part of a week.
Learn how to make the most of out your dollars and limit your indulgences. Also, when going grocery shopping, make a list before you hit the store and stick to that list to avoid overbuying. With this system, I spend up to $60 per week on groceries.
After making the necessary adjustments, I was able to make the shift to a healthier lifestyle and shed the 20 pounds that I gained within 3 months.
Make a plan fit for your budget and stick to it. Don’t let the dollar signs deter you fitness goals.
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