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Get fit and healthy, even if you’re on a budget

Getting fit and healthy isn't always the easiest thing to do. When you're just starting out, it's often easier to make excuses than stick to your resolve and chase your goals. A couple of the most common excuses I hear are “It's too expensive to eat healthy” or “I can't afford a gym membership”.

I agree that sometimes eating healthy can cost a little more than a bargain-dollar burger from your local fast food restaurant, and a gym membership can be a pricey investment (especially if you don't use it!).

But I would argue that your health is worth it, like the old saying goes: health is wealth. If it's important to you, then you'll find a way to fit good nutrition and exercise into your budget without breaking the bank.

Another way of looking at getting fit and healthy is as an investment and preventive measure.

If you take care of yourself now, invest in your present health and wellbeing, you'll be safeguarding your future health and potentially saving a lot of money on medicine and healthcare further down the line; not to mention improving your long-term quality of life too.

It is possible to be active and healthier while on a budget, so really you have no excuses.

These are just a few tips that may help reduce the financial burden of living the fit life:

1. Buy frozen fruits and vegetables. Frozen fruits are amazing in smoothies or can be defrosted slowly and mixed with yoghurt for a healthy snack, plus they usually cost half the price of fresh fruit and will last much longer in the freezer.

Just as nutrient-dense, fruits and veggies that are frozen just as they're picked often contain more nutrients as these are locked into the produce during the freezing process.

2. Avoid impulse buying and don't shop when you're hungry. Plan out your meals for a few days or a week in advance and make a shopping list based on what you need, then only buy what's on your list.

I strongly recommend avoiding the grocery store when you're hungry, as this is when you'll be more likely to veer off plan and make impulse buys — I'm sure those chips and snack bars weren't on your shopping list!

3. Get creative with your home gym. There are so many exercises and workout routines that don't require any equipment and only a small space in which to move. Body weight moves such as squats, push-ups, lunges, crunches and dips are some of the best and most effective exercises you can do and require no equipment.

If you do need extra resistance to progress your training, the addition of exercise bands, a couple of dumbbells or kettle bells is really all you need and all are affordable options.

4. Get outside and make nature your gym. Go for a walk outside, a run on the beach, swim in the sea or climb the stairs at National Stadium. See, there really is no excuse not to get moving!

5. Utilise the internet for training ideas and inspiration. There are a lot of “fitness stars” out there on social media now, you're only ever a couple of clicks away from someone freely demonstrating a great workout you can replicate. Start following some of your favourite fitness personalities and put into practice their workouts.

Becky Wright is a qualified personal trainer, nutritional therapist and international bikini fitness champion. She has worked with clients worldwide, including royalty. Becky works at Alchemy Fitness. Contact: becky@alchemy.bm

(Photograph supplied) No excuses: Go outside and make nature your gym

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Published August 12, 2015 at 9:00 am (Updated August 12, 2015 at 1:37 am)

Get fit and healthy, even if you’re on a budget

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