You don’t have to stretch your imagination to understand why people think that transitioning into a lifestyle which promotes weight loss comes with a price tag. We are bombarded with advertisements from “magic supplements”, online exercise programs, and gyms looking to fill their capacity. Stores feature expensive products which are natural, organic, promote weight loss, or “healthy” options, making the rest of the store look much more affordable by comparison.
However, committing yourself to a healthy lifestyle doesn’t have to mean looking for a higher paying job to cover new expenses. There are plenty of ways to lose weight without losing money, and in some cases, you will find that you are cutting costs.
- Determine the Root Causes
There’s always more to the weight gain story than, “I got hungry”. Long-term weight loss success comes from identifying the root cause beneath the lifestyle choices that lead to weight gain, whether it’s stress, loneliness, boredom, lack of knowledge, or lifestyle. Determining this doesn’t need to be expensive, and you might be able to pin the problem right away. However, if you need more coaching and lessons in mindfulness and meditation, sign up for a few sessions, and go from there.
- Stop Eating Out
Everyone eats out for different reasons, whether for social interaction, exposure to new cuisines, entertainment, convenience, or need. However, by cutting down the number of times you eat out in a month, you won’t just be pocketing the savings, you’ll be cutting down the calories ingested as well. At first you might be surprised by the increase in your grocery bill, but remember that you are feeding yourself and your family and providing them with healthier, portioned meals at least three times a day. It won’t take long for you to see the savings, and your waistline will start shrinking without any extra effort. You have full control of what ingredients go into your meals, how much sugar, fat, and salt is used, and how big the resulting portions will be. It might be difficult at first, but you’ll start enjoying and even taking pride in your creations sooner than you think.
- Always be Prepared
Adopt the Boy Scouts’ motto for your own and always “be prepared”. Many times we find ourselves betraying our new lifestyle because a meeting ran late, you missed the train home, or you didn’t pack enough food for your meal. Now you’re hungry, cranky, and the only options you have come from a food court or a vending machine. Not only are the options usually full of sugars, fats, chemicals, and other junk, but also expensive. You are paying for the convenience of the food or drink being in close proximity when you need it, and now you are being suckered into paying 2 or 3 times its value. To protect yourself from such situations, always have a few healthy options on you at all times, like a natural granola bar, a Ziploc of raw nuts or some dried fruit. You won’t be ruining all your efforts and you will have full control over how much you spend.
- Start Moving
Weight loss involves a positive change to your mindset, your diet, as well as your level of physical activity. If you are on a tight budget and can’t commit to fitness classes or afford gym fees, find ways to be active for free. Take the stairs at work instead of the elevator, speed walk around the park at lunch, cycle to work, or incorporate a morning jog into your routine. Getting your heart pumping and your muscles moving doesn’t have to be expensive or even cost anything at all. Challenge yourself to find ways to incorporate physical activity into your day, whether it means walking your elderly neighbor’s dog in the morning, meeting your friend for a cycle on a local trail instead of for drinks, or trying the free yoga lessons in the park as you return from work.
Losing weight doesn’t mean you have to rework your budget to accommodate for your new lifestyle. Start your own healthy revolution today without upsetting your finances. Who knows? It might even save you a few dollars every month!