Healthy Living on a Budget

Estimated read time: 2 minutes

It's no secret most of us should probably be at least a little healthier. Yeah, it's easier to hit the drive-thru, but most of the time I can practically feel my arteries clogging as soon as I open the bag. The road to a healthier you may seem a little daunting and expensive at first glance, but once you have a solid plan to follow you will start to feel better about your waistline and your bottom line.

Affordable Meals

The first step in healthy living is making sure you have a plan in place for food. Making food at home does take more time, but you will save a lot of money (and calories) by not eating out. Having a meal plan for the week, shopping with a list, and buying in bulk will help you out at the grocery store. Buy all the ingredients for a few different things and have a meal prep day every week. Using a slow cooker and rotating your food by freezing a portion or two after each meal you make will give you some variety and not require you to cook every evening. Figure out a meal rotation that will work for you. My parents eat the same meal two days in a row: Monday and Tuesday (tacos), Wednesday and Thursday (black bean soup), Friday and Saturday (pulled pork), and Sunday (leftovers). I prefer the lunch-dinner rotation: hot-and-sour soup (Monday dinner and Tuesday lunch), Mongolian beef (Tuesday dinner and Wednesday lunch), and so forth. By preparing and eating the majority of your meals at home you can pick healthier ingredients and still have some delicious meals.

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Affordable Fitness

Most people do not realize how inexpensive and easy it can be to exercise. Fitness does not have to be pricey. Try foregoing the gym membership and exercising at home by watching YouTube videos or finding an exercise routine from online. If you are fortunate enough to have friends into fitness you could ask them to put together a good workout for you. You could also look into joining a running club in your town. If you feel like you need the gym, try signing up when they have deals going on. Sometimes you can get a cheaper monthly rate if you sign up around March instead of January when everyone is trying to stick to their New Year's resolutions. Finally, you can look into health incentives either from your employer or through your health insurance. My dad's company has a step competition every summer, which my family and I have done for the past two summers even on our own. Turning anything into a competition makes it much more fun!

Healthy living is a great goal, and it does not have to be expensive. By using just a couple of our affordable meals and affordable fitness tips, you will be able to live a the healthy lifestyle you've always wanted and not break the bank at the same time.