20 Day Jump Start Program: DAY 9

We are close to half way through the program and I hope you’re feeling as motivated as I am to make it to day 20!

The next two weeks will be the busiest of the year for some of us. Maintaining our health will maintain our sanity, and we might just survive the season without packing on the pounds! So lets get started.

the perfect tricep dip

Triceps dips are a great test of strength and flexibility. Two of my goals for 2016 are to be able to do an unassisted pull up and a full bodyweight triceps dip. They may look easy, but there an awesome workout!

Ready to try them out?

day 9 dips

Two of the most common excuses every personal trainer hears are that the client doesn’t have time and doesn’t want to pay the mounting costs associated with getting healthy. I’m here to tell you that in about 95% of cases these are merely excuses, see below for some tips and tricks to getting healthy while staying on track financially!

Health on a Budget

Did you know that even the healthiest diets only cost between $1.00-2.00 more per day? This is less than your daily average drink. By making smart healthful choices at home, and at the grocery store, you can improve your health and not go over budget. Here are some pieces of advice to help you get healthy without breaking the bank;

Free Fitness Alternatives

There are so many resources that offer free fitness information, advice and tutorials. The first year I lived in North Dakota, I lived in a very small town that consisted of a bank, a post office, a bar, and a k-12 school. Needless to say, getting to the gym was not an option. I found some amazing websites that offered a ton of free workouts, programs, videos, meal plan information, etc. and made the decision to choose health and motivated myself every day to be active. I ended up getting in the best shape of my life jumping around on my furniture with weights the tiny quarter of a trailer we called home. There are so many free options, if you’re not sure where to start, check out the list below;

    • The library
    • Free online websites/blogs; many of these experts will offer both gym and equipment free options for most workouts.
    • Free Apps
    • Get outside; bike, hike, walk, run, do pull ups on the jungle gym, think outside of the weightlifting box
    • Local Community College or Community Center; Many if these facilities will offer free classes and events to the community. They offer so many wonderful options for you and your family to stay active and healthy year round.

Look for discounts

Health clubs, gyms, community centers, grocery stores, health food stores, pharmacies…all places you dread blowing your paycheck at but do anyways have frequent sales. Websites like Groupon, the newspaper, email and snail mail bulletins are all ways to stay informed as to what deals are being offered where. Shop around before signing up for a membership, compare prices at the grocery store, buy your most frequently used items in bulk on sale and store for later. A little extra effort up front can be worth the savings in the long run.

Buy Local

Organic doesn’t have to break the bank; did you know that some farmers grow produce organically but don’t get certified in order to avoid costs associated with those labels? You can buy fresh produce from them for up to 50% less than you would otherwise!

Shop local/ Farmers Markets & Co-Ops; not only will you get better quality, but you avoid paying grocery store mark ups while supporting local economies!

Grocery Store Hacks

We’ve all heard the grocery shopping basics- don’t go hungry, avoid interior isles, go with a plan. Here are some other ways to make your next trip a little more cost effective;

  • Buy in Bulk; do you blow through that container of quick oats in a week? Eat rice for 3/5 meals a day? Love trail mix as an afternoon snack? Try buying in bulk. Save money and time buying the quantities you will need for the weeks ahead
  • Plan meals around sales; there can be some killer deals on meat and poultry, check out grocery store flyers a day in advanced and go to the store with a planned menu. Save time and money by following an ingredient list.
  • Increase Veggies- the most expensive part of eating healthy is the cost of protein, increase your veggie intake to offset some of that
  • Get Smart about Protein- As mentioned, protein is not cheap. There are cheap-er cuts that you can work with but in general this is where the big money is spent. Try protein alternatives like tofu, beans, and nuts to manage overall costs!
  • Don’t be afraid of the bargain brand- Seriously, compare prices and don’t be afraid to go for the store brand over the name brand. Saving a few dollars by opting for the ‘Honey-Nut Scooters’ over Cheerios will pay off in the long run.

Savings at Home

If you are really concerned about paying an extra $1.00-2.00 a day (and ultimately prevent some pretty costly potential future medical bills…) try saving in other areas to better balance your spending;

  • Prevent wasting food by only buying what you will need for recipes in the coming week.
  • Find yourself throwing out a lot of produce? Try placing washed and prepped fruits and veggies on a shelf at eye level instead of hidden in the drawers below!
  • Pack your own lunch- did you know the average person will pay around $10.00 a day for a lunch out? That works out to around $2600.00 a year. Switch to brown bag lunches and spend closer to $2.00, your wallet and waistline will thank you.
  • Stay Organized
  • Ditch the Lattes- yes you can, your work probably offers free coffee anyways. Bring creamer (or a healthy alternative) from home and save time in your morning commute by avoiding coffee shop lines.
  • Take shorter showers, turn off the lights, turn down the heater, etc.


Concern over the cost of healthy eating is just as much as an excuse as ‘I don’t have time’. Its amazing the time and energy you can put towards something you make a priority in your life. A little planning and effort can go a long way in saving you money and getting you back on the road to health!

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