There are very real benefits to taking some time during the week to get exercise. Most of the time, when people start trying to get fit, their motives are largely physical. They want to get rid of some extra weight, they want to increase their endurance, they want to look younger, and so forth.

 

If you feel like work keeps you too busy to stay fit, you may want to reconsider that position. There are actually financial benefits to getting fit and, in some ways, you can think of it as the equivalent of giving yourself a bit of a raise.

 

Here are some financial reasons to go out for a run, take a hike, get a gym membership or do something else that’s good for your body, your mind and your wallet.

 

5: Exercise Diminishes Stress that Ruins Your Productivity

 

When you feel stressed, it has physical consequences for your body. You’ll tend to have aches and pains, you’ll probably start getting sick a lot easier and, of course, it’s bad for your heart, your blood pressure and just about every other system in your body. When you’re not healthy, there’s absolutely no way you’re going to be at the top of your game at work, and that could affect how much money you make if you’re an entrepreneur or how likely you are to get a promotion if you work for a company.

 

Working out reduces stress. Reducing stress makes you healthier and being healthier makes you more productive and effective. If you’re trying to move your career forward or your income upward, and unhealthy body will hold you back from both of those goals.

 

4: Laziness Isn’t Free

 

Your heart, your lungs and everything else in your body is designed to work. When you are stagnant, the fact that you’re not moving around at all starts to impact your health and that has real financial consequences, in addition to the risks posed to your well-being.

 

According to the CDC, as noted by Harvard, cardiovascular disease resulting from people being too inactive cost an estimated $24 billion in medical expenses during the year 2001

 

Don’t kid yourself. If you’re not working your body, it’s going to cost you in the long run, likely in the form of very high medical bills.

 

3: Good Food Costs Less

 

When you start eating healthy, you’re going to start planning your meals. This is one of the most basic and effective strategies for avoiding binging on junk food or eating out. Planning your meals can save you money.

 

When you plan out your meals, you can pick ingredients based on what’s on sale during the week and, because you have a plan, you don’t end up running out of food and having to go out and buy food at a restaurant. Consider that a restaurant meal may cost you anywhere from $10-$12 a plate and you’ll see why having a home-cooked meal planned out for that night – which could cost as little as $2 or $3 – gives you a savings advantage that can add up fast.

 

2: Something to Do

 

Have you ever spent money because you were bored? If you answered “no” to that question, there is probably no other person like you in the world. Between having plenty of options to shop online, most cities having stores that are open very late and 24-hour restaurants, there’s always some place to go where you can fill up the time and empty out your wallet.

 

Conversely, if you happen to have a run, a bike ride, a boxing match at a gym or anything else scheduled for that day, that’s time when you’re not bored and when you’re not spending any money and that you’re actually getting benefits for. You may have to pay for membership to a gym every month, but you can find inexpensive memberships and the more you use them the better value you get. Having a workout hobby can really help you to control your spending in this way.

 

1: You Have Options that Are Cheap

 

Some of the best exercise options are actually the least expensive. For example, just about every type of athlete out there runs as part of their training. Running is cheap; all you need is a pair of shoes and clothing for the weather.

 

As long as you don’t confuse spending a lot of money on a crazy workout machine you saw on late-night TV with getting fit, you can get fit for very little money, avoid spending money on other less productive diversions and enjoy other financial and health benefits, as well.

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