Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Squeeze In Exercise Without Spending Lots of Time & Money

"Boy, I have high blood pressure! That headline was from My 1st Million At 33 in late December. And in that post Frugal addressed the challenge of balancing financial, professional and health goals. It's a great post and I am grateful to Frugal for sharing his medical dialogue. He's young and his doctor has given him a prescription for better health: more rest, more relaxation, more exercise and less food.

It's the same Rx that I've outlined for myself. For example, I've written about my efforts to conquer the food issue, which is a new problem for me in these posts: I Won't Eat or Spend While Standing Up and Yes! You Can Be Too Thin & Too Rich: My Trust Fund Problem.

I'm not ready to tackle the sleep deprivation issue. But here's how I'm getting more relaxation and exercise.

  • Move the phone. For convenience -- easy to answer, easy to call -- I used to keep my phone right next to me on the dining room table that doubles as my desk. The cordless phone is now back in the kitchen. This distance forces me to stand up, stretch and walk. It's a way to get a exercise in baby steps.

  • Drink lots of water. I recommend filtered tap water from the kitchen sink. Drinking lots of water is good for the skin, hair and the rest of the body. What's more, the frequent trips to the rest room force me to get up from the computer.

  • Get a dog: At least once or twice a day, I take the family dog for a walk, an effort that provides fresh air and exercise. I get to talk to people and I get time to think while walking Scruffy, our dog.

  • Buy a yoga tape: I highly recommend the yoga tape with Ali MacGraw, the actress from the movie Love Story. OMG! She looks great and the exercises are really rejuvenating. Also the tape, which was done with yoga teacher Erich Schiffmann, is broken up into smaller segments, which gives me the option of doing smaller 5-10 minute vignettes of Yoga poses or the entire 40-minute tape. The added bonus: My head is so much clearer and I work faster after my midday Yoga workout. It's like the way my computer works faster when I remove cookies, spyware and other intrusions.

  • Use the stairs: I live in an apartment building so it's easy for me to get stair exercise when I walk the dog or check the mail. But no matter where I am --the movie theater, the supermarket or at a mall -- I try to use the stairs. It's great exercise. This link has info about the value of taking the staircase.

  • Hire a personal trainer with friends: I take a Yoga class with a group of friends. Basically, we hire a personal trainer --a wonderful woman named Angela -- and we split her $70 hourly fee. This arrangement has several benefits that involve peer pressure. 1) When I'm not in class, my friends repeatedly ask after me to make sure that I'm okay and that all is well. Their concern and inquiries often prompt me to continue going to class and 2) I feel guilty about not going because I know that my absence means that each member of the class will have to pay more to cover the fee. It's not a big deal if the class has 8-10 people, because everyone is paying so little. But if only a few people show up, I feel as if my absence (due to work or laziness) creates a financial penalty for my friends.

We all have overbooked days. I'm curious about how other people squeeze exercise into their workday, evening hours or weekend routines. Please write or leave a comment.


Previous Posts

What Gas Leak? Mom's Nose vs Car Dealer & $49 Service Bill

Party; Small Budget: A Frugal Event Planning Guide: Pt. 1
Full-Time Teacher, Weekend Cook: Part-Time Jobs To Pay Bills
How to Get More Value From Your Home
Four Millionaire Moms Tell Their Secrets


Sharon Harvey Rosenberg is the author of The Frugal Duchess of South Beach: How to Live Well and Save Money... Anywhere!, which will be published in the Spring of 2008 by DPL Press.

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