Five Easy and Inexpensive Fitness Tips

 

Fitness – it’s a word we hear a lot these days, from news stories about the hottest exercise trend to infomercials for the latest workout gadget. Sometimes, it seems like in order to improve our fitness we have to run out and buy a ton of costly equipment or enroll in a pricey exercise class. Unfortunately, these days everyone is tightening their budget, and often the gym membership is the first thing to go. The good news is we can still maintain and even improve our fitness if we keep a few simple tips in mind.

Stretching / Flexibility

I’ve worked in the field of health education for many years, and one of the things I emphasize is that staying fit doesn’t have to be extremely difficult or expensive. Over the years, I have collected fitness tips that require little or no money and can be used by folks of all ages, and I wanted to share a few of my favorites here.

Two things to keep in mind before you check out my suggestions -

1) If you haven’t been active before, but want to improve your fitness, take it slow and easy in the beginning and stick with it.  Each week, set a new realistic goal for yourself and you’ll notice your fitness improving in just a few weeks.

2) If you haven’t had a physical exam in the last couple of years, I recommend getting a complete checkup and medical clearance before starting an exercise plan.

These fitness tips can help you burn calories and maintain a healthy weight, and perhaps even improve your overall mood as well.

  • Break your activity up into 10 minute sessions. If your schedule doesn’t allow you to set aside a thirty minute period to exercise, go for a ten minute walk in the morning, then another at lunch time, then do a ten minute exercise and stretching session in the evening.
  • Team up with friends or relatives who are also interested in improving their fitness. It’s amazing how a little social support from like-minded individuals can help you stick with a healthy habit. Challenge each other to a weekly goal such as meeting for a thirty to sixty minute walk or run.
  • Invest $10 to $30 in a set of hand-weights or resistance tubing that you can use at home. A set of hand-weights (dumb bells) will last forever and greatly increase the types of exercises you can perform. Have you ever used resistance tubing  for muscle Resistance Tubingtoning and strengthening? If not, give it a try. It’s versatile, portable, and best of all, inexpensive.
  •  Start an activity journal. Keeping track your workouts or physical activity is one of the easiest ways to stick with a fitness routine. It can be as simple as recording the date you exercised, the type of activity, and the amount of time you spent doing it. You can simply use a small notebook, or try one of the exercise journal apps available for mobile devices, such as Runkeeper.
  • Exercise while watching TV. Are there some nights when you can’t pull yourself away from the TV to go for that walk or workout? Don’t worry, you can still burn calories and do some muscle toning without missing your show. While you’re watching that favorite program, get off the couch and walk in place or do exercises such as push-ups or crunches every time a commercial comes on.

Of course, there are many more great fitness tips that can help us shed those extra pounds and stay in shape. I hope the ones I’ve listed above offer some motivation to get moving and stay active. Do you do something that helps you stick with your exercise or activity?  If so, let’s hear about them in your comments. Maybe in another post I could list some of your favorites.

Health professional/writer living in Richmond, Virginia. Graduate of the University of South Carolina. My interests include film, art, technology, and travel.

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Comments

  1. I'll add another tip to this excellent list…START SLOWLY…meaning, don't set your sights on doing a marathon your first week. Work up to it. Exercise twice a week to start doing things that aren't too difficult. When that's comfortable, increase the frequency and the intensity!

  2. Great tips … right in time to keep all the New Year exercise resolution people motivated too! Also drinking ice cold water while exercising reduces calories.
    I couldn't agree more about setting realistic goals.
    My recent post Costa Rica, Ed Mercer and Entrepreneurial Acknowledgment

  3. I go in and out of being fit! LOL! Because I used to dance, I know what it feels like to be fit and healthy. Now, when I'm really focused I start and stick with jumping rope…quick and focused exercise with immediate results for me!

  4. Great site, but I have a very important suggestion. Your floating side banner makes it nearly impossible to read your articles using a smartphone. It covers up the words on the left side, and you can’t exit out of it. It’s also next to impossible to fill out the comments section too. I’m using an Android phone and I can’t turn off the Mobile Theme setting. I’ve noticed this problem on several other blog sites, where the page will refresh and automatically go back to the mobile theme right after you turn it off. I would un-dock that floating social media bookmarking box to make it easier to read and use on mobile devices. Great site, however!

  5. Franziska San Pedro says:

    I love these tips! Great for someone like me who wants to get back in shape (I can't believe I used to run for an hour and still have enough energy to go for another hour, now I get side stitch after a minute :( …).
    I kinda feel like Betsy: in and out of being fit!
    Another problem is that I get bored easily, I signed up for the gym and went there for a while and then I got so bored with walking in one place while watching Rachel Ray, Fox News or the Kardashians.

    Gotta find a routine that doesn't feel like routine! Good suggestions for starting out again, thanks,

    Franziska San Pedro
    Flavor Designs
    Renewable Lifestyle & Art
    My recent post Where Do You Buy Your Gifts?

  6. As a former fitness trainer myself I found your tips to be very sensible and useful. Hopefully people who are starting to improve their fitness will do as you suggest. Developing a fitness program that you can maintain for the long term is vital.
    My recent post Click one of the post titles above to include it at the end of your comment

  7. That is true,Matthew. As an author and business man, I can relate to how you said, "The good news is we can still maintain and even improve our fitness if we keep a few simple tips in mind". I hope more people discover your blog because you really know what you're talking about. Can't wait to read more from you!

  8. The best way that I have found to stay in shape is by exercising daily.  The most convenient way is to have a home gym.   One way that I have found very helpful for budgeting a home gym setup is by purchasing quality <a href=”http://www.fitnessbrokersusa.com”>used exercise machines</a>. Fitness Brokers is a great company out of the Northeast that will go far above and beyond your expectations.
     

  9. I usually follow the steps except for the activity journal. I’m a bit lazy to write down stuff. I think it’s better to keep a record of activities which might come in handy.
     
    Anyway thanks for sharing these tips :)

  10. Excellent info you were given here. I’ve been reading through about this theme for 1 1 week mobile phone . our newspapers in education and also good think I discovered the idea throughout your web site. I did a wonderful time looking over this.

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