If you want to lose weight, it may seem that there’s a lot of money to spend. Everywhere you turn, there are ads for exercise machines, diet plans, diet foods and weight loss communities. Don’t fret if you are on a budget. Losing weight is often a matter of combining healthy food choices with exercise–two things that don’t require money.
For many, counting calories is an essential component to weight loss. It forces you to pay attention to what you eat, helping you to avoid overeating. While you can do this on your own with pen and paper, SparkPeople.com allows you to track your calories easily, calculate how many calories you’re burning through exercise and even offers meal plan suggestions of what to eat.
When you don’t want to spend money on a gym membership, getting exercise outside is often a good alternative, especially when the weather is nice. If you’re out of shape, start by walking around the block and work your way up to 30 minutes, at least three times a week. You could also try jogging or bicycling. Taking a hike at a nearby park or nature preserve may not even feel like exercise.
Most libraries loan DVD or video rentals for a week at no cost to card holders. Choose a video that focuses on cardio exercise to burn calories or one that focuses on calisthenics to build muscle. Videos are a good choice when the weather makes it difficult to get outside.
Book your calendar with activities or try picking up a new hobby. When you are busy and active, you don’t have time for the type of mindless eating in front of the TV or while reading a book that many people fall prey to.
Online Fitness Routines
Though there are plenty of websites that charge you for fitness routines, you can still find many good routines for free. Check out the Couch to 5K program if you want to learn how to jog. For weight training routines, visit the websites of popular fitness magazines, like “Shape” or “Self.”
Challenges With Friends
Getting support from others can really help foster your success. If you have friends or family members who want to lose weight as well, see if they’d be interested in a friendly “Biggest Loser” challenge. Even having an exercise partner could make a big difference.