How many New Year’s Resolutions will include expensive gym memberships, diet plans, supplements, books, videos etc… It’s a multi-billion dollar business! Oh, am I going to make some enemies in the next few sentences! What a waste of money!
The truth is health and fitness can be very basic and inexpensive. It’s all about balance and moderation of proper nutrition, exercise, sleep and lowering stress. Less is more!
Let’s start with the gym memberships. The box chain gyms (you know the ones) they appear to be a good deal until you read the fine print. They will get you with their maintenance fees, activation fees and so on. Also, what you may or may not know, is they count on most of you dropping out by the third week in January. All they really care about is that you signed their contract! They mostly figured you would get sick of the crowds and go away once you lost your willpower and for most, that happens around the third week.
Diet plans, fad of the week! Here is the thing about diets, what are the first three-letter of that word? OK, now let’s get real and talk about healthy lifestyle CHANGE! What can and will you do to make some permanent changes in your eating habits that are sustainable? Think about portion size, eating a dessert once a week instead of every night, exchange water for soda. These are just a few suggestions, I have many more that really are not that hard but can bring big changes for life time gains. It takes six months for a change to become a habit.
On the subject of eating, if this is a goal you should be looking also at your sleep and stress pattern. These have a great deal to do with over or poor eating habits. This is where I would suggest a journal. If you write down sleep, eating and emotions you might just pin down where the problem really is and maybe what the trigger might be, so you can stop it in its tracks. By the way, a journal can be a notebook that you get at Wal-Mart or Target for a dollar. Remember, I talked about balance? It might be that you have to start saying no to certain things or people and start taking better care of you!
Supplements, most of what you need you should be getting from your food! If you take the time and shop from the perimeter of the grocery store, stay away from processed foods and prepare at home you should be good to go. This, of course means if you are healthy and don’t have special needs. If your Doctor has told you that you need a certain vitamin or mineral than follow his/her lead. The general public needs to know that each vitamin can become toxic if taken in excess.
On to videos, many of them are quite good but my problem with these are you don’t have someone watching your form. My suggestion is when you are new to working out, get a certified trainer to do an assessment and give you a program with your goals and needs in mind. Watch and teach you good form and then cut you loose to do it on your own. It’s worth the money, I promise! You can do this at home at very little cost. There are endless exercises that are quite effective using bodyweight and bands.
So, with a little planning and commitment you can have a solid health and fitness plan at a very economical cost. It will take a little work on your part, but you are worth it!
Happy Healthy New Year!