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Frugal Fridays: Get Fit For Less

January 4th, 2008 · 2 Comments

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Around the first of the year many of us make a resolution about getting fit and/or losing weight.

Now, losing weight or getting fit can be expensive. Membership in a health club starts at about $40 a month ($480 a year). Diet aids can be $30 or $50 a bottle (or even more), and you may have to worry about side effects. Surgery to remove excess fat is also very costly.

Getting fit doesn’t have to cost big bucks, though. Here are four fitness tips that barely cost anything at all.

  1. Walk. Walking is great aerobic exercise. Nearly everyone can do it and it doesn’t cost a thing. Even if you don’t have an outdoor place to walk, many malls allow walkers in an hour before the stores open. (Just make sure that you leave before the food court opens.) Try to walk for about thirty minutes at least three times a week.
  2. Drink water. Soda and other beverages typically have a lot of calories and very little nutritional benefit. Even drinking juices or milk can pack on the pounds. Try substituting water for a beverage every time you take a drink. Keep a pitcher of ice water in your refrigerator. If you don’t like the taste of water, then you can add a little zing by squirting a little lemon or lime juice into it. (Lemons and limes are both available at a very low cost.)
  3. Think fresh. Processed foods are generally higher in calories and fat than fresh foods. Instead of reaching for potato chips or a cookie when you snack, reach for an apple or a banana. You do have to eat, but you can choose fresh over processed most of the time. (Bananas, in particular, are often on sale since they spoil very quickly. Look for good deals on bananas when they are very ripe.)

    4. Keep a food diary. Most people aren’t aware of how much food that they actually eat. Write down exactly what you eat every day for a month, including portion sizes. Use a library book or a calorie guide on the Internet to assign calories to each food that consume. Once you realize how much you eat, it’s much easier to cut back. There’s a pretty good calorie counter at Caloriesperhour.com, or you can find your own favorite.

(Note: Before starting any diet or fitness plan you should consult with your doctor.)

Best wishes to any readers who wish to lose weight!

Contents (c) Copyright 2007, Laura Spencer. All rights reserved

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