Lots of people associate working out as something they’d do only to get skinny. Why else would someone torture themselves running on the treadmill or taking part in a cross fit class? Working out does help you get skinny, but typically only if you also pay attention to what you’re eating. Since most people fail to lose weight by exercise alone, they eventually give up on it, thinking that exercise is a complete waste of time.
Nothing could be further from the truth. For example, think about all the money you’ll save from not getting sick. The likelihood of you being sick decreases significantly when you exercise on a regular basis as well as eat healthy foods, enabling you to work harder. Being able to work hard is especially important if you’re self-employed or your pay is based on bonuses. But it still applies to salaried people. Think about it. If you’re always tired and/or feel depressed, you probably won’t do a very good job and, at best, keep your job, but not advance and so miss out on getting raises. At worst, you’ll get fired.
Another reason regular exercise is important is the fact that you do not have to buy a new wardrobe because you no longer fit into your clothes. While working out alone may not be the most efficient way to losing weight, getting regular exercise does make it easier to MAINTAIN your weight. And much easier to quickly lose a few pounds if you need to. This particular point is a great motivator for yours truly. I simply can’t afford to buy a bunch of new clothes, so as soon as a pair of jeans or a shirt fit me tightly, I know I need to do a better job taking care of myself. Because I make an effort to maintain my muscle mass lifting weights, my metabolism is high. Therefore, I don’t have to completely starve myself to lose a few pounds.
You may think that having a gym membership is terribly expensive and wasteful when you can easily jog outside. Here in NYC, the typical memberships run between $80 to $215 per month. That last number is an example of what it costs to be a member at Reebok Sports Club/NY where I work and I agree, it’s pricey. But when you see what you get for that money, you may find it’s actually worth it. After all, the weather is not always ideal for running. Not only that, a lot of people don’t like to run, at least not all the time, and you can’t really do weight training in the park. Maintaining muscle mass is crucial for both your health and maintaining your weight. Also, if you hang out at the gym instead of going out in the evening, you’ll likely save money since you won’t be spending it on drinks and/or food. In addition to getting fitter and healthier, the chance you’ll meet other healthy, fit, cool people greatly increases if you’re at the gym instead of out and about.
If you walk instead of taking the bus, subway or car, think about how much money you’ll end up saving in the long run. Living in NYC, I try to walk everywhere whenever possible. For example, if I know I have a busy day and it’s unlikely I’ll have time to do my forty-five minutes of cardio, I make sure I walk or jog to at least one of my clients. Over a year, I’ll probably have saved four to five hundred dollars in subway fares. What’s even better, I’ll have a nice glow on my face when I arrive at my destination, not to mention I’ll be very awake and clear-headed:)
Exercising on a regular basis will decrease the amount of meds you need to take. According to the Public Health Agency of Canada, adults aged 18-64 decrease their risk of more than 25 chronic health conditions, including heart disease, high blood pressure and type 2 diabetes by engaging in regular exercise. Keeping illnesses at bay means fewer trips to the pharmacy and in turn, less money spent on medication for chronic health conditions each year. Staying active will also make you sleep better, so you’ll save money on sleep and headache meds.
So, you see, being and staying fit is definitely something you should seriously consider. It has the potential to save you literally thousands of dollars yearly!