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But Dr Suz, I can’t afford to exercise or get a diet

Updated: Feb 27, 2023

Okay, I'm glad to be sharing this post because I do know a lot of people that believe that their ideal weight loss-fat loss fitness goals are completely out of their reach because apparently exercise and nutrition is so expensive. However, whilst some might say I'm biased, let's unpack the issue a little bit more. Also, see my posts on making exercise a habit and get results with the least amount of effort here.

Yes, prices are increasing due to inflation. And yes, there does seem like there might even be a depression on our sights after COVID lockdowns and that sort of thing. Therefore, there may be some people that are looking at budgeting and finding ways to keep more money in their budget for the week.

I'm here to tell you that exercise and nutrition doesn't need to cost a whole bunch of money and can actually save you a whole lot of money. It should not be the first thing that comes out of things that you do, regardless of where you choose to do it or or what you choose to do.

First of all, exercise can be done anywhere, anytime and with very little equipment. We saw this all the way through lock down because there was a number of people that I trained that didn't have access to absolutely any gym equipment at all in their houses.

Remember, I was in Melbourne so people couldn't travel any more than five kilometers from their own house. So we had to make use of what people had in their house. If you have a chair in your house, a couch, or a carpet to lie on, maybe you have some stairs on and if you have a flask, two flasks, a couple of cans of beans, any of this stuff, you now have your own at home gym. So it's not about it being expensive to work out, there are many ways that you can work out that use absolutely the things you have at home. I've created a guide for my clients that's about getting results from home without any equipment because the equipment you have does not equal the results you have.

Another example of this is when we were allowed to work out in the park right at the start of the pandemic. I only had access to a couple of items at the park, to work out with clients. This would be a kettlebell, a band or two and a barbell. I'm not saying that you need these things at home, I brought the equipment to the park so that they wouldn’t need to bring a chair to the park. That sort of thing amazed clients when they got into my studio and realized that, in fact, some of them got stronger since the last time they'd been working out in a gym environment with only the equipment that we had. So it's about knowing how to work with things that you have.

Working out without equipment doesn't mean that you get less results. It's about what you do with the equipment that you do have. On top of that, eating healthy actually is cheaper than eating unhealthy. For example, take outs are actually quite expensive and if you have it a few times a week, it adds up. On top of that, there's a lot of healthy meals that you can make that don't take three hours to make, it just requires the basic ingredients and can be made in one pot in under five minutes and I've created a plan that absolutely speaks to this as well. So it's not about it being too expensive to eat healthy.

Even if time was the factor before and you were paying for the ability to have the food made because you don't have enough time to do it. It's none of those things. My question to you is, Can you afford not to exercise, Can you afford not to look after your diet? Reason being - whilst you might see the outgoing investment in having the accountability of your gym or personal trainer or exercise class each week - you don’t see the ghost of the future. As in, what happens if you continue to ignore your health.

The things you don't see such as, those people who don't make these types of decisions to continue with their fitness classes and decide to ignore their nutrition on their health for long periods of time: They tend to be the ones that have more issues later down the track and it costs more for them in medical fees and costs more for them in paying for extra things that they need, as a result of not looking after their health. It can be expensive because now for example, you have to look to park a car closer to your work when you're not fit enough because you can't do the free car park options. You can't find the fitness to be able to walk to your work or, you get to a point that (because you're not monitoring the amount of food that you're eating), you get hungrier and you have more desire to eat a greater volume of food and eat more frequently. Which means that your cravings get out of control and therefore you're spending more money on food.

On top of that, you're more likely to be at risk of infectious diseases, such as getting the flu and getting the cold because your body has less immunity to be able to fight off these things. Read my post on exercising when sick. These infections can also occur when you're not eating healthy, because your gut is your first line of defense against getting sick, so by ignoring your nutrition and ignoring your fitness, you actually will cost yourself more in the long term. Simply because the things that you're not addressing now are going to mount up and get more and more expensive. You may not realize that you're spending money on things that are a condition of you being less healthy. And that's why I'm here to point it out in this blog post.

Another issue to consider is lifestyle creep. So in lifestyle creep, people initially are able to get away with earning less money, and they are able to budget within their means. Then as the amount that they make increases, the amount that they spend increases as well. Actually, the amount that they make is the thing that makes them spend more money, and then they get used to that as well. However, for most people who are working their way up, to the point that they can afford an exercise regime, when they have more money, they are putting off their health by working extra hours and trying to get that promotion and that sort of thing.

Then, when they are ignoring their health they're saying they are choosing last minute dinners that aren't the healthiest. When they are sleeping less, they get stressed out more at work because they are trying to get these promotions, so that maybe one day they can't afford to be able to invest in their health. The thing is, they are putting off their health to make more money, but then they get a health scare. When they get health scare, they try to throw all of that money at getting healthier, and it's never too late to get fit and healthy. That's not what I'm saying at all, but you could have spent a little bit investing time, money and effort into knowing how to make better decisions and knowing what are the big needle movers that you need to pay attention to when it comes to health and exercise.

One of the things that many of my really successful clients have come to see is that they should be looking at a personal trainer as an investment, which is why it's good to look for a personal trainer for exactly what you need them to do. So, what I mean by that is if you're looking for a personal trainer that can help you understand what it is that you need to learn, to know, and do with your body for your goals, over time. As a result, you're gonna have the skills on how to manage your health and fitness in the long term. That's a very empowering place.

For some people, they'll be looking for a trainer or coach that will just tell them what to do and not really explain why they're doing it. That can be good if you're really flush with cash regardless of the price that the trainer is, because now you've got someone that will just tell you what to do and take that out of the way for you. But if you don't know the reason why something happens in a particular way or what to do to change your exercise regime with respect to the output that you're getting. Then you're going to be no better off than just giving your money to a donation box and just following a random plan that you got off the Internet for free.

If you're after a “personal trainer buyer's guide” or a comparison guide as to what to look for in a trainer or coach then click here and have a downloadable version where it compares Pilates yoga, semi private training, personal training, walking. You can see on a table, what areas that each one would cover such as, is it going to work your core muscles, is it going to provide a community element, things you can think about what's important to you and make sure the thing that you're choosing will actually help you achieve your goals.

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