Sense & Centsibility Blog

How To Get Fit On A Budget

running feetIt’s that time of year again: we’re on the verge of summer. Thank goodness!

Many of us hibernated more than normal this year because this winter was, well… let’s just say less than desirable.

If you’re like me, it also took away my usual motivation to exercise because I wanted to just curl up on my couch with a blanket and watch Netflix.

However, my health is important to me. So here’s what I did to get out of that rut, along with other ideas to exercise and get (or stay) fit on a budget.

Choose a goal

There are many different types of goals out there. My friend asked me if I wanted to do Grandma’s half marathon with her and at first I thought she was crazy. But I ended up saying yes because I realized if I have an end goal, it motivates me more to work out on a regular basis. Plus, I’ve never done a half marathon, so hopefully I’ll be able to check that one off of the bucket list.

Now a half marathon might be a little too much, especially if you don’t run. But there are a ton of 5k run/walks out there and “couch to 5k” plans.

Or think about an event or milestone as a goal. Do you have a class reunion, wedding, birthday, or vacation coming up? It helps to think of something in the future to work toward. Visit Running In The USA to find races in your area.

If you can, find a work out partner

I’ve found over the last two months that because I have four work out “partners” I am more motivated to eat better and stick to my running plan.

Now when I say partner, I’m not saying that I exercise with someone every single time or even once a week. In fact, it’s only been a few times, but even more important are the conversations, texts, or emails about how we’ve all been doing. Even talking about our struggles helps us overcome them.

I’ve also found that my dog expects me to take her out on runs now. I can’t let her down, can I?

There are LOTS of cheap or free workout options

Start with the obvious — be active and take advantage of the outdoors. And try to make it fun with friends or your favorite music.

  • Get out during your work day. Go for a walk by yourself or take a co-worker or two with you.  Accountability can be huge. Tell each other that you want to get out 3-4 times/week. You’ll find that either you will hound them to get out or vice versa, which is good for not only your physical, but also your mental health to step away from your desk for a while.
  • Take your dog for a walk, jog, and/or run regularly. I’m really not a runner, but you’d be surprised what you can accomplish when you just start. Begin by running for a few minutes and increase it a little every time you go.
  • Get a group of friends together to play basketball or sand volleyball on a regular basis.
  • If you have a smart phone, computer, or other electronic device that has internet access you can pretty much find any work out there is online. And there are a ton of work outs using your own body weight that don’t require purchasing any equipment. YouTube is a great resource for videos, also.
  • Do you have kids? Play games outside, go to the park, or have a dance party.

Are you looking for tangible advice to improve your financial health as well?

Call LSS Financial Counseling at 888.577.2227 to set up an appointment with a Financial Counselor. We can help you conquer your debt and achieve your financial goals. You can also get started on an online budget counseling session right now.

Author Elaina Johannessen is a Counseling Supervisor at LSS Financial Counseling.