5 Cost Effective Ways to Lose Weight
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Many people make weight loss a new year resolution and that's great. Taking the opportunity of the new year to make a positive change that will improve your health is always a great thing to do. But people tend to make the mistake of attempting to join the gym. For the first few days or weeks of the new year, gyms are filled to the brim with bright-eyed hopefuls getting a head start on their goals. By February, most of these people have given up and the gym is back to normal until the next year. Here are 5 ways to jump start your weight loss journey without signing up for and then canceling a gym subscription:

1. Start With At Home Workouts

The internet is a wonderful place where lovely people share the knowledge they have at no cost to you. If you have never gone to the gym before or are not comfortable in such an environment, pick a video or an app and get in a workout in the comfort of your bedroom. Building up motivation and cultivating a habit of working out can be a better first step than just diving into the gym, spending all that money, not knowing how to create a workout, developing a routine, or even using the machines and then canceling your membership. Some of my favorite fitness YouTube channels include:

- Fitness Blender

- Blogilates

- HASfit

- Joanna Soh Official

There are also some great app options like:

- Pump Up

- 7 Minute Workout

- Aaptive

Weight loss does not have to equal money lost!

2. Start Meal Prepping

If you are chronically ingesting high fat, high calorie, low nutritional content food, working out will NOT help you. Health is 80% what you eat and 20% how much you exercise, so try to start prepping meals on the weekend. You can prep one meal, for example, lunch, for the whole week or prep some healthy snacks. A little change can go a long way.

3. Sleep More

Studies have shown that getting the appropriate amount of sleep can help you lose weight. Increased sleep actually helps us balance our hormones. A well-rested brain allows you to make better food choices. Also, by sleeping earlier, you eliminate late night snacking and are consuming less calories daily. So be sure to get some rest and drop those pounds.

4. Drink More Water

Hydrate! Hydrate! Hydrate! Drinking a glass of water before every meal fills you up more, aids in digestion, and therefore can help you lose weight. Often times when we get "hangry" or start grabbing snacks, we are actually just thirsty. If you sip some water and find yourself still hungry, grab a healthy snack. Other benefits of hydration include clearer skin, healthier hair and less body odor. So use that money you would have spent at the gym for a nice water bottle.

5. Don't Diet, Eat Intuitively

Use this year to learn about your body and how to listen to it. Often times certain cravings correspond to a specific micro nutrient your body needs. Also, if you are craving something but keep yourself from it, you're much more likely to binge on that thing later on. Eliminate this idea of cheat days/meals and different diet plans. Eat a balanced, healthy variety of foods and try to keep up with what your body wants.

If your goal for 2018 is to lose weight, you do not have to spend money on a gym membership and a personal trainer to get started. That is why I suggested these five cost effective lifestyle changes that you can make starting tomorrow. They can completely transform your life by years end. "New year, new me" doesn't mean new year new fees!

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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