Want to get in shape without breaking the bank? Check out these fool-proof strategies for how to lose weight on a budget:
- Track your grocery store purchases: After you decide how much money you want to spend on food each month (or week), use a spreadsheet to track your grocery store expenditures. If the thought of adding another spreadsheet to your life makes you cringe, consider this: the calculating capability of a spreadsheet can help you determine what you’re overspending on, and it will put all of your food-related financial data in an easy-to-read format so that you can make informed decisions that will benefit your budget. Also, adding a calorie count column next to each grocery item can help you gauge whether you’re purchasing too many high-calorie foods.
- Embrace the benefits of home cooking: Eating out on a regular basis is the perfect recipe for wallet shrinkage and waistline expansion. Recent data from a National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey found that eating out ups a person’s daily calorie consumption by about 200 calories, and increases the amount of salt, sugar, and saturated fat they consume. If you eat out a lot, start slowly by promising yourself that you’ll master at least one healthy, homemade recipe a week. Don’t have time to cook during the workweek? Prepare a few make-ahead meals during the weekend that you can just grab out of the fridge and heat up on weeknights.
- Eat seasonally: As a Howard County resident, you have access to essentially every major type of produce, year round. But sticking to in-season fruits and vegetables will save you money (the cost of fresh produce can skyrocket when it’s out-of-season) and help you get the most nutritional bang for your buck. If you don’t know when your favorite foods are in season, check out Eat the Seasons for more detailed information on the topic.
- Buy in bulk, then portion out: Purchasing food from a wholesale supplier such as Sam’s Club, Costco, or BJ’s may seem like an ill-advised idea for a person who’s trying to lose weight. But buying in bulk is one of the best tips for how to lose weight on a budget. If you have the willpower to bypass the supersized cartons of candy, you’ll see that the shelves of these warehouses carry many healthy food options such as quinoa, almond butter, and organic chicken. Their produce sections also offer a variety of fruits and vegetables. The key to losing weight while buying in bulk is to immediately split giant-sized containers of food into individual portions that can be grabbed out of the pantry or fridge when it’s time to make dinner.
- Work with a personal trainer: Slogging solo through a 30-minute elliptical session and lifting a weight or two at a conventional gym will get very boring, very fast. It’s also not the most effective use of your precious exercise time. Working with a personal trainer who can develop a personalized fitness program that fits your goals is a more time-efficient (and budget-friendly) way to lose weight. During the month of August you can save even more money by taking advantage of Fitness Together Ellicott City’s new client deal: $150 off a 24-session personal training package.
Professional guidance on how to lose weight on a budget
When you’re trying to tighten your purse-strings and your belt buckle simultaneously, it can be hard to stay the course all by yourself. One final tip for how to lose weight on a budget: don’t try to go it alone. A professional nutrition consultant can help you devise a feasible plan for eating healthier without breaking the bank. To find a nutrition and fitness consultant in the Ellicott City area, call Fitness Together Ellicott City today at (410) 750-2228.