How to Make Healthy Life Changes—On a Budget
Making major life changes requires willpower, but certain changes are worth the effort. If you’ve been meaning to get started on a new workout routine, it might be easier — and cheaper — than you think. Or if you’re ready to change your diet and start eating healthier, there are simple steps that you can take daily that will put you in the right direction. Use this guide for tips on how to get started on life changes that will make a positive difference in your life.
Starting a new workout plan
If you don’t have a regular workout plan in place, it can be hard to know where to start. Given the pandemic, it’s safer and easier to adopt home workout plans, but without gym equipment, it can be difficult to create a plan that feels effective. Fortunately, setting up a home gym can be easier and cheaper than you think.
Before you go down the rabbit hole of buying excessive equipment online, consider what type of workouts you enjoy most. Are you happier doing low-impact exercises like yoga and pilates, or are you more motivated by fast-paced aerobic classes? Whether you’re into sweaty cardio or long and slow yoga classes, it’s easier than you think to set up a home workout space.
If you’re a yoga and Pilates junkie, you’re in luck. With yoga, all you really need is a yoga mat and a couple of props — yoga blocks, straps, and a mat — to get started. For pilates, a yoga mat, foam roller, and small hand-weights will get you started. If you want to save money on weights, you can get creative. Sometimes a heavy book or a full water bottle can replace a weight.
When you’re getting equipment and workout clothes, be sure to check out online coupons and offers. Setting up a gym doesn’t have to be expensive if you know where to look for great deals. It’s worth it. Once your new routine takes off, you’ll have more energy and will likely find that your mental health improves as well.
Changing your diet
Adopting a new diet can be incredibly challenging. While it may seem inconsequential, food can be deeply connected to our emotional selves. We often turn to food for comfort, meaning that dieting and restricting can sometimes cause more harm than good. This is why changing your diet should be done thoughtfully, with patience, and with a solid plan in place.
Sometimes we have deeply embedded habits we aren’t even aware of, which is why it’s wise to start a food journal before changing anything. By journaling about what you eat, you’ll bring more awareness to your eating habits and might be able to identify where you can make changes. For example, if you’re prone to afternoon snacking, this isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but it can be problematic if you don’t have healthy snacks around.
Once you identify your eating patterns, you can start tweaking your diet. Start small — replace potato chips with crackers and hummus, and buy some fruit to satisfy sweet cravings. Pick up a new recipe book or look for new recipes online to help motivate you to try out new meals. When you visit the grocery store, steer your cart away from processed foods, and choose whole foods instead. Eventually, these small changes will amount to a much healthier eating style.
Change never happens overnight, but with a concerted effort, you’ll start to see the benefits of your work. Get low-cost gym equipment to get started on your home workout routine, and make small changes to your diet so you can start eating better overall. Remember to be patient with yourself as you transition to a healthier lifestyle.
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