Growing up and in high school, I NEVER thought about my health or making healthy lifestyle changes. I was in SO many sports, so I never had to think about fitness. And I just naturally had a fast metabolism, so I never really gave any thought to what I was eating.
It wasn’t until my later college years that I realized I just didn’t feel healthy. I wans’t as active. I was still eating poorly but was starting to see the results of that. And then after college I got a desk job and was spending 40+ hours at a desk, so that didn’t help at all!
Since then, I’ve focused a LOT more about making healthy lifestyle changes – and permanent ones!
A lot of people think of healthy changes as being really expensive. But that’s so NOT the case. Here are some healthy lifestyle changes you can make that are totally FREE!
HEALTHY LIFESTYLE CHANGES THAT ARE TOTALLY FREE
Change Your Mindset
When it comes to making healthy lifestyle changes, your mindset is half the battle! I think a big way to tackle this part is by knowing your why?
WHY do you want to start working out? WHY do you want to start eating healthier? Instead of setting a goal that has an end-point (I want to eat healthier so I can lose X pounds) set a goal to make a permanent lifestyle change (I want to eat healthier so I can have more energy and feel more comfortable in my body.)
If you choose a goal with an end-point, like the first one, you run the risk of abandoning the habit when you’ve reached your end goal. Then, a year or two down the road, you’ll likely be back at square one.
You can also work on your mindset by eliminating the thought that you CAN’T do this. You might be telling yourself that a healthy lifestyle is expensive. Or that you don’t have time to make healthy meals or work out. Or that it’s just too hard. Write each of these excuses down, and then write down all of the reasons why those thoughts are WRONG.
Change Your Grocery Habits
I can’t tell you how many times I’ve heard that a healthy lifestyle isn’t attainable for everyone because healthy food is more expensive. I’m here to tell you it does NOT have to be that way.
Recently, my boyfriend and I decided we wanted to try to cut down our grocery bill a bit to stay more in our budget. So after a big grocery shopping trip, I logged every single purchase into a spreadsheet and categorized them by 1) Produce, 2) Meat, 4) Dairy and 4) Pantry/Processed foods. I was FULLY expecting meat to be the most expensive category. Meat is at the center of just about every meal we make, so that would make sense.
Well, I was wrong. The category where we spent the least was dairy, however, I don’t put too much meaning behind that because we eat very little dairy (no milk, just cheese and yogurt usually). The second lowest was produce. After that came meat. And the highest? Pantry and processed foods. And I want to clarify that we eat a LOT of produce, so this wasn’t just a result of us not buying a lot of healthy food.
We figured out pretty quickly what the real problem was. And now when I meal plan, I figure out how we can create meals without processed foods. I am also focusing on replacing packaged and processed snacks with fruits, cheeses, nuts, etc. Not only are these healthier replacements, but they’ll save me money too!
Start a Fitness Routine
Don’t be intimidated by this. A fitness routine can look different for everyone. For some, it looks like an hour at the gym, intense cardio, and weightlifting. For others, it looks like walking the dog every evening.
Don’t feel like your fitness routine has to measure up to anyone else’s. If you’re aiming for something you aren’t comfortable with, you likely won’t make it long.
The great thing is, fitness can be free! There are SO many YouTube videos available online with every workout imaginable, and it costs nothing to go for a walk or a run outside!
Trade Out Soda for Water
Of all the lifestyle changes I’ve made, trading out soda for water is the one I’ve physically felt the most. I used to drink a lot of soda. Now my it really takes a toll on my body when I drink it, and I just don’t feel well the rest of the day.
There are so many healthier alternatives out there (water being the healthiest.) I still have my coffee in the morning, so consider switching to coffee or tea if you need the caffeine boost.
The great thing about this one is that it not only does not cost you any money, but it actually SAVES you money!
Use SPF Every Day
I’m still counting this one as free because, since you’re probably already using a daily moisturizer, you can just trade it out for one that has SPF in it! You can also find foundations and BB Creams that have SPF in them so you don’t even have to think about it.
Keep a Food Diary
Before you decide you need to completely change up your diet, try keeping a food diary for a week! It’s amazing what you can learn about your eating habits. It’s a great way to identify mindless snacking, to see which meals kept you full and which had you eating again an hour later, and pick out unhealthy habits.
Then you can start small by picking out one eating habit from your food diary that you want to change. Maybe you want to trade out that pastry you usually have mid-morning for some fruit of veggies! Or maybe you want to trade in your unhealthy breakfast for something that will keep you full longer, so you don’t have to eat again as soon.
BEFORE YOU GO
Make sure to check out these other posts you might like on Refined Revelry!
- 7 Things to Do on Sunday For a More Productive Week
- How to Set Goals You Can Actually Achieve
- How to Start a Side Hustle and Make Money From Home
And don’t forget to sign up for my FREE 6-day goal setting challenge where I teach you to set goals and create a long-term action plan to ensure you reach those goals!
Hi, I’m Erin! I’m an online educator and content creator who helps women reach their goals by teaching them to manage their time and their money. I want to help you design a life you love, so I’m sharing everything I know about goal setting, productivity, planning, and personal finance. You can read my full story here!