Lots of us are constantly looking for ways to save money and keep fit and healthy at the same time. It can be difficult, especially if you’re living on a tight budget.
Taking care of yourself is likely to save you money in the long run, but when money becomes stretched, we often have to look at cutting back on luxury items, and gym memberships are one of the first to go. It is important to find ways to keep active and healthy, but it doesn’t have to be expensive.
Here are eight easy ways to stay healthy that aren’t going to break the bank or leave a hole in your pocket!
Doing exercise doesn’t have to be costly. You can start going running and set yourselves targets each time or you could even play sports down the park. Football and tennis are often cost-free!
Fitting in 150 minutes of moderate intensity exercise each week, substantially reduces the risk of chronic disease. Building and maintaining muscle requires a bit more effort. You could buy some inexpensive gym items to help you with a home workout. Buy some stretch bands and create a routine of sit-ups, push-ups, legs lifts and other exercises for a cut price gym experience.
Cycle or walk to work
If you’re lucky enough to live close to where you work, then you could ride a bicycle or walk to your job instead of driving or using public transport. Some independent retailers even reward their employees and set up a ride to work scheme. This offers an incentive to get fit and healthy, while also saving money on bikes and other cycling related products.
As well as getting regular exercise, there are many different ideas to improve your diet without it becoming costly.
Buy ingredients, not products
In the long run it is cheaper to buy raw ingredients and cook from scratch than buying prepackaged meals and unhealthy snacks. You’ll save lots of money and you’ll start eating much healthier too as you’ll start avoiding additives, preservatives and artificial sweeteners. You could also buy your meat from the local butchers or head down to your local greengrocers. You’re much more likely to find something healthier and cheaper.
Grow your own
Growing your own fruit and veg is something that everybody should do! It may take lots of time and care, but the end results will be worth it and it will save you money in the long run.
Make use of what you already have in the cupboards
I bet if you were to look in your cupboards, fridge or freezer, you’ll find all sorts of things you’ve bought but for one reason or another have ended up not using. Try and get creative and use the foods you have hidden at the back behind the good stuff. Incorporate them into your meals for the next week. You might be surprised what creations you come up with.
Convenience food is both expensive and unhealthy most of the time. It may seem less expensive at first glance, but that’s rarely ever the case. Preparing a meal for the family such as spaghetti or shepherd’s pie doesn’t have to cost you an arm and a leg. You can also use the leftovers for another meal.
Preparing lunch is much more cost effective too. Eating out for lunch every day at work could really start to add up, so try to avoid the temptation. Make something healthy and filling the night before, and you’ll be well armed to tackle the second part of your work day.
Buy in bulk and frozen
Frozen veggies can bulk up your dinner while slashing your supermarket bill. These are equally as nutritious and still taste as good. Look out for the larger bags of mixed vegetables or even fruit. This way you’ll have more variety. By doing this, you also won’t be in a race against the clock to eat it all before it goes bad.
Cut out luxury ingredients
When we go food shopping, we often find that some deals are just too good to miss. It’s very easy to get sucked in to deals that aren’t as cost effective as we thought at first glance. It might be worth writing a list of luxury items that we don’t really need. They also might not be very healthy either.
By using some of these tips, you will be well on the way to becoming healthier and save some money in the process! Share with us what you do to stay healthy on a budget by posting on our Facebook page.