Oh my how time flies! We’re already into week 3 of Nic & Pascal’s 4 week guest blogging line-up, and they’re back with another fabulous post full of tips on how to get yourself into tip top shape. Équilibre is all about eating well, exercising so you feel good, and enjoying life! We like their ethos a lot. Today is all about investing in your health without spending a fortune, but if you missed their previous posts, then head here for a foodie feast, and here to rediscover your exercise mojo. Thanks guys!
The smart way to invest in your health
Research group IBIS estimates that Australians will spend $3.7 billion on fitness and weight loss products and services this year. That’s some big dollars, but we wonder if it’s all money well spent?
Have you ever taken out an expensive gym membership and then only used it for the first few weeks? Bought a treadmill or one of those infomercial exercise gadgets which now rests under your bed, out of sight and out of mind? Or outlaid money on an expensive weight loss program, only to have the weight pile back on within months of finishing? What about all those pricy supplements, protein powders or diet products that promised the earth, but didn’t deliver?
We can end up spending hundreds, even thousands of dollars in the quest for good health and fitness, often as a result of clever marketing and promises of quick and easy results. Unless you are an elite athlete, you don’t really need to spend a lot of money on the latest and greatest gear or gadgets. It’s our belief that anyone can achieve glowing good health by simply getting back to basics, investing in good food, a few simple pieces of exercise equipment and seeking out good advice when needed. If you spend your money wisely now, you will most certainly reap the rewards in the future.
To help you out, we’ve put together a special Équilibre smart guide to the best, most cost effective ways you can invest in your health right now…
Buy best quality food (preferably organic): Forgo expensive, packaged, convenience foods and base your weekly shopping and cooking on the basics. Visit a farmer’s market or community market and take a real interest in the type of food you and your family are eating and where it comes from. Go to Local Harvest and enter your postcode to find out where you can get the best good food close to you.
Plant a veggie garden (or at the very least, a herb garden): An inexpensive way to have a ready supply of healthy (organic) produce at home. Earth friendly and a great way to introduce your kids to eating real food.
Buy a new cookbook or food magazine subscription: An essential source of inspiration that will have you learning new recipes and cooking up a storm in the kitchen. Home cooking instead of take-away, convenience foods or eating out, means you’ll be doing your body a favour and saving money in the process. Check out some of the beautiful cookbooks being produced locally by UWA Publishing and Fremantle Press.
Buy a Sodastream (for around $70): Make your own sparkling water and ditch the soft drink habit for good. It’s cheaper than buying bottled mineral water, better for the environment and so much better for your health. Don’t be tempted to purchase the syrup flavourings though – use fresh lemon or lime and mint leaves instead and you’ll have yourself a refreshing drink. Add to freshly squeezed juices or homemade cordials to satisfy the kids.
Invest in a good pair of exercise shoes: They don’t have to be the most expensive, hi-tech model on the market but they should fit well and be replaced regularly (at least once per year, depending on your volume of exercise). A good pair of runners is the only piece of equipment you actually need to get out the door and get active. It’s that simple.
Try a stretch cord (sometimes called a resistance band – around $30): A simple and versatile piece of equipment that provides a good, all round resistance (strength) workout. Everyone can use it and it’s also ideal for traveling as it’s light and doesn’t take up much space in your suitcase.
Get some personalised advice when needed: If you get injured while exercising, see a doctor or physio right away – if you put it off, it could end up costing you a fortune in tests and rehab later on. If you have specific health concerns, see a naturopath before self-diagnosing and outlaying good money on supplements that you ‘think’ you might need. The same goes for exercise, if you’re unsure how to improve your fitness, invest in a few personal training sessions to get some specially tailored advice that will help you get the best out of your workout.
Last (but certainly not least) try an inexpensive course like our Fitness for Foodies 8-Week Program. For less than the price of 2 personal training sessions, you receive 8-weekly action plans full of food and lifestyle advice and inspiration, templates you can use to get organised, structured workouts to use at home, plus access to 3 outdoor group training sessions each week. Everything you need to get fit, healthy and inspired – without having to fork out the big bucks! Nic & Pascal.
That’s certainly got us motivated to look after ourselves – I think they just gave us permission to wander around the Farmers Market, buy a tasty new magazine and potter about in our veggie patch. Oh and don’t forget the exercise too! If you’ve enjoyed what the Equilibre team have had to say, then pop back next Friday for their final installment.