How to Maintain Great Shape on a Low Budget

The fitness revolution has given rise to a billion dollar industry that is creaming it off of our obsession with getting fit. Gym memberships, pulse monitors, brand name shoes, and dozens of other gadgets have made getting in shape a costly affair. As a result, not being able to afford it has become the latest no exercise excuse. Well, we’ve got news for you . . .

Anybody CAN get in great shape – without spending a dime. 

Here are the two keys . . .

Ditch the Gym

Unless your goal is to become a mass monster, you can get in the shape of your life without ever stepping foot in a gym. You were born with everything you need to get a great workout every day of your life. As long as gravity exists, your own bodyweight can provide a vigorous home workout that does all the good things that any weights based routine does – that is build muscle and promote fat loss. 

That means that you don’t have to spend a small fortune to get fit. Travel is never a problem because you are always carrying your workout equipment – your body – with you. A hotel room or a friend’s house is as good a location as your own home. 

You can workout with no equipment at home whether your goal is to lose weight, build muscle, improve your cardiovascular fitness or train for a sport. A particular style of training that combines all of those training goals is circuit training. 

Circuit training is great for working out at home. It involves performing a series of exercises with no rest between them to complete a circuit. You then have a short rest before repeating the circuit. This rapid movement from one exercise to the next boosts the intensity of the workout. It also increases the fat burn with higher caloric burn. When you do circuit training with just your body weight, you are able to move from one exercise to the next faster than having to set up equipment. This makes the workout even more effective. 

Eat More Sensibly

Millions of words have been written on this subject. Yet the 7 words written by author Michael Pollan encapsulate the substance of healthy eating. Pollan wrote,

 “ Eat food. Not too much, mostly plants.” 

You can follow that advice by focusing on whole, fresh foods, not processed food. Steam, bake and broil rather than frying your food. Reduce sugar, salt, and saturated fats. Limit portions and learn to listen to your stomach. When you are satisfied, stop. 

Buy smaller dinner plates. Eat smaller meals, more frequently. Replace processed carbs like candy and potato chips with washed fresh fruit and green, leafy vegetables. Drink plenty of fluids, with a focus on water. 

If your goal is to lose weight, make it your goal to reduce your daily caloric intake by between 250 and 500 calories each day. To gain weight in the form of lean muscle tissue, do the opposite, increasing your caloric intake by between 250-500 calories daily. Be sure to eat 20-30 grams of protein with each meal. Concentrate on getting your proteins from real food sources such as chicken, beef, milk and eggs rather than expensive processed supplements like protein bars and protein powders. 


Using your body weight as your own personal gym and eating more vegetables and lean proteins while eliminating processed foods and beverages will not only allow you to get in great shape – it will actually save you money. So, ditch the ‘can’t afford it’ excuse and start paying your body the respect it deserves.