You have probably begun thinking about what your new year’s resolutions will be. Lose weight, save money, have more free time. These are all noble ventures, but can they be done at the same time? Joining a gym and signing up for classes are excellent ways to lose weight. But how does that fit in with saving money and having more free time? Believe it or not, it is very feasible to lose weight without spending a mass amount of time or money. Here are a few ideas how:
1) Walk. Walking is an excellent (and free) way to work your entire body. Whether you make an effort to park at the back of the parking lot, go for a walk during your lunch break, or a stroll around your neighborhood after work, walking is an excellent way to lose weight.
2) Purchase a multi-purpose workout kit. There are many kits on the market that include rubber bands for resistance training, numerous grips for various exercises, and a jump rope for cardio. Inexpensive kits allow you to do dozens of different exercises to tone your entire body.
3) Use workout DVD’s. Workout DVD’s are a good way to get some variety in your workout. You can check out DVD’s at your local library, or purchase them inexpensively online. My personal favorites is The Biggest Loser’s Boot Camp. It offers different levels for beginners and advanced. It takes less than a half hour and you can feel it in every part of your body!
4) Visit the playground. Child playgrounds are a great place to get your workout in. Pick a playground that is at least half a mile from home (so you get a mile walk in just by getting to & from!). Once you are there, the playground equipment can be used for stepping stairs, doing pull ups, and quick sprints. Use the equipment as your own obstacle course and get a full body workout!
5) Look for used equipment. If you can afford to purchase equipment for your home, this is a great way to take the hassle out of working out. Check Craigslist or local used sports stores. You may be able to get a great treadmill, free weights, or weight machines at a discounted price. Once you have made the purchase, put them in a “in the way” place where you will see the equipment everyday. If they are hidden in the corner of the basement, you will feel less guilt for not using them.
Whatever you decide to do as part of your exercise regiment, just remember to keep moving!
For those of you who may not be familiar, Dave Ramsey is a financial guru who teaches others in the form via television, radio, and books. His “take charge” attitude gets right to the point and forces people to wake up and take action in their financial futures.
His recent blog post “The Secret That Changes the World” discusses what it really takes to make positive changes in the world and in your life. If you are up for finding out the answer, visit the article at http://www.daveramsey.com/article/the-secret-word-that-changes-the-world/lifeandmoney_other. It is a great article and worth reading!
Your credit score impacts numerous facets of your life, from where you live, what you drive, to how much it costs to get your electricity turned on. Despite the hold that credit has on all of us, few of us know how it is calculated.
Check out this great article by wofin.
Wofin’s blog is filled with financial information and budget-saving ideas!
Do you like to stock up on meat when it’s on sale but don’t have the space in your freezer? Or run out of time to defrost it? Try this quick tip:
Switching banks can really be a pain, but it can be worth it if your bank is charging you crazy fees! Check out this article to see who the culprits are.
Then visit BankRate and watch a short video on how to avoid these fees. I switched to an online bank a year ago (ING Direct) and haven’t looked back!
I’ve been making my own laundry detergent for years. I’ll share with you the recipe. Give it a try, it’s amazingly simple & one batch lasts a long time!
What you need: Borax, Washing Soda, bar soap, a cheese grater, a storage container, and a spare scoop. I’ve been able to find these products easily in stores. Smaller grocery stores may not have the washing soda-it tends to be the more difficult to find.
Use the cheese grater to grate the bar soap. My grater does not have a “fine” option, although I’ve never had a problem with larger slivers of soap. Add in two parts soap, one part borax, and one part washing soda. Use two tablespoons per load.
This is what the final product looks like:
I found all of the ingredients at Wal-Mart. But here are some links to where the items can be purchased online.
Borax: Found at Wal-Mart for $2.98 for a 76 oz. box ($.32 per cup)
Washing Soda: Found at Wal-Mart for $2.98 for a 55 oz. box ($.43 per cup). Below is a link to the least expensive online option I could find.
Bar Soap: I prefer Dial which can be found at Wal-Mart for $3.98 for 8 bars. ($.50 per cup)
How do the costs stack up?
The above recipe costs FIVE AND A HALF CENTS per load (assuming you use two tablespoons).
I found a large box of Tide Powder on Amazon.com for $33 including shipping. This was enough detergent for 80 loads of laundry. This equates to $.41 per load.
If you do ten loads a week, your savings is $3.55 per week!
I especially like this detergent because besides cleaning well, it does not contain any dyes or perfumes (unless you add in scented soap). The only downside I have found is the box of Borax is larger than the box of Washing Soda so I run out of them at different times. I’ve also added a little OxyClean to a load if I’m concerned about colors.
Give it a try–I’d love to hear your opinions!
In an effort to decrease my monthly grocery bill and to stretch my budget even further, I’ve been experimenting with making various foods from scratch. Here is a great recipe I found for fresh wheat bread:
Mix into a bowl:
3 1/2 cups bread flour
2 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
2 tablespoons active dry yeast
1 tablespoon salt
Into a saucepan on the stove mix:
1 cup water
1 cup milk
1/2 cup honey
3 tablespoons butter
Add “wet’ ingredients into bowl with dry ingredients.
Add one egg and beat all until smooth. When ingredients have formed a large ball, turn onto a floured surface and knead. Cover for about an hour to allow it to rise. Punch the dough down and allow it to sit covered for another 10 minutes. Divide into thirds and base at 350 for around 40 minutes or until golden brown.
The dough freezes very well so you can keep some in the freezer for use later on.