How to be healthy on a budget
We all know that it can be a challenge to create healthy meals and exercise on a budget, which is why we’ve put together the following top tips to keep you on track and take the weight off your wallet, too!
Has the London Marathon inspired you to dust off your running trainers? If so, and if you are in need of a little motivation, why not join your local ParkRun – a free, 5km timed run every Saturday morning at your local park. All ages, abilities and even dogs are welcome to pop along – take a look here to see where your local parkrun takes place.
You can also workout at home, too. Thanks to the rise of YouTube and Instagram, fitness vloggers showcase workouts online using everyday items, including tins of baked beans! Vloggers we like include The Body Coach, Clean Eating Alice, Carly Rowena and Father Fitness – most have also written books stacked full of top workout tips and healthy recipes.
Fed up with being weighed down by monthly gym costs? Before you join and commit to monthly or even yearly memberships, take advantage of free trials and see whether it is for you. Most gyms offer day passes including Anytime Fitness, Fitness First and Nuffield Health to name a few. Or simply join a pay-as-you-go membership at the likes of TheGym and PureGym.
You can also ask a friend to see whether their gym gives them free guest passes and work out with them for free.
It’s great to see the impact of your hard work when it comes to keeping on top of your health. Here are some great free apps to help you stay on track:
• The NHS Couch to 5K plan is designed to get you off the couch and gradually work you up to running 5K or for half an hour, in just nine weeks
• MyFitnessPal is a free app that tracks diet and exercise to determine optimal calorie intake and nutrients for the users’ goals and uses gamification elements to motivate users
• MapMyWalk is a fitness tracking application that enables you to track your walking activities. It will record your duration, distance, pace, speed, elevation, calories burned and route. This app will definitely encourage you to meet the recommended 10,000 daily steps – be warned though, it’s addictive!
• 5 Minute Yoga is a great app for beginners, providing users with short sessions that they can fit in anytime, anywhere
Compile a shopping list and plan your meals and lunches, keeping within a budget. This way you can easily stick to purchasing ingredients that you are definitely going to use, avoiding the need to overspend and throw away excess food. Where you can, shop local for fresh fruit and vegetables and support your local farmers.
If you’re in need of healthy food inspiration on a budget, BBC Good Food has a host of recipes for breakfast, lunch, dinner and snacks. And if you don’t fancy buying recipe books, head down to your local library to borrow and scan the recipes you want to try out.
The best tip of all? Drink plenty of water!
Looking the part
In recent months, athleisure wear (athletic and leisure wear) has boomed in all the high street shops with sales increasing 42% over the past seven years. The demand for yoga pants and fashion-infused sportswear has quickly become one the biggest growth areas for high street chains. Forget spending £££’s on leggings, sport bras and trainers – pop down to your local Primark, H&M and even Tesco to nab some great deals.
Along with exercising and eating right, having a positive mind is vital in keeping motivated and on track. If you’re in need of a little inspiration, take a look at bloggers and others on social media including any friends you work out with. Search hashtags including #BBG and #TransformationTuesday for ideas and inspiration.
You could even track your own progress by starting a blog on WordPress or use Instagram as a platform to share your journey with others. Then if you do lose a little motivation, you can always take a look back at how far you’ve come.
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