Free tips for staying fit in 2017 (without spending a fortune)

Stayhealthy -650

The New Year is typically the time when many of us review our fitness, and resolve to improve it. In fact, in 2016 the peak popularity for the search term ‘fitness’ on Google in the UK was 2nd January.

There are plenty of ways that you can spend lots of money to support a new fitness regime – gym memberships and fitness trackers for example – but fitness does not need to be expensive. Here are five simple, free changes which could make a big difference. It’s all about getting more, for less:

More water

Water is necessary to maintain a healthy body and avoid dehydration. If you’re dehydrated, you could confuse thirst with hunger and eat more than you need which is not going to help your healthy regime. Next time you feel hungry between meals – drink some water and see if it goes away. According to the European Food Safety Authority, women should drink about 1.6 litres of fluid and men should drink about 2 litres of fluid per day (about 2.8 – 3.5 pints).

More movement

Take every opportunity you can to be active - it’s easier than you think. Take the stairs. Get off public transport a couple of stops earlier and walk. Park your car as far away as you can from the supermarket, office or school. Walk more. The NHS has a whole list of ideas to get you active for free, including exercises, games and free equipment.

More relaxation

According to the NHS, in 2015 around 440,000 people in the UK reported work-related stress at a level they believed was making them ill. Stress, and related problems, are the underlying reason for 20 percent of all GP visits in the UK. Stress can lead to further health problems such as high blood pressure, anxiety, and depression. Although a busy modern life does mean that stress is almost unavoidable, it is important to be able to relax in order to combat stress. You can find some tips to do just that here.

More sleep

Sleep regulates hormones that control appetite and energy production, and a recent study found that people who slept between six and eight hours a night had a greater chance of achieving their weight-loss goal than those who slept less or more. Try going to bed earlier, and not drinking caffeine drinks, exercising or eating a heavy meal close to bedtime. Also, to make your bedroom as calm and relaxed as possible, do not watch TV in bed and keep your room as dark as possible, which includes removing electronic devices.

More planning

The best laid plans for healthy eating can go out of the window if you find yourself craving an afternoon snack, or you get home from work and have no healthy food at hand. The answer is to plan your food in advance – create a list (including healthy snacks) and not only will you improve your health, but you’ll save money too: 

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