Today the world is filled with people who are overweight, broke and cranky. If you are one of them, here are four changes you can make that might help you lose weight, save money and put a smile back on your face!
Money Saving, Fat Burning Change #1 – Eat Meals Slower. Alexander Kokkinos, MD, PhD, of Laiko General Hospital in Athens Greece lead a study that observed the effect of slam-dunking a meal. The article, “New Scientific Study Indicates that Eating Quickly is Associated with Overeating” published on the ObesityinAmerica.org website provided evidence for why eating slowly helps our brains understand that our stomachs are full. They explain that speed eating, “curtails the release of hormones in the gut that induce feelings of being full. The decreased release of these hormones, can often lead to overeating.”
How: By eating slower, you will feel fuller faster and stop eating sooner. If you can leave 100 calories off your plate every day, by the end of the year you will have reduced calorie consumption by 36,500 calories and stretched your budget too. Since you need to cut 3500 calories to lose one pound, this small change could make your number on the scale 10 pounds lighter!
If you are used to eating a McDonald’s hamburger with an order of small fries twice a week, start ordering your hamburger without the fries, and eat that fast food burger slowly! By eating slower you won’t need those fries, saving 230 calories each fast food meal which adds up to almost 24,000 each year!
Results: While the cost savings may only be $100, you’ll reduce the fat around your middle by 7 – 10 pounds!
Money Saving, Calorie Burning Change #2 – Clean House Yourself. Did I hear a collective scream? I know you’re busy and scrubbing the shower or mopping the floors is an ugly job, but somebody’s got to do it! If you are paying a cleaning service to keep your castle sparkling clean, you are probably dishing out somewhere between $50.00 and $75.00 per hour for their elbow grease to eradicate your grime. Admit it, you probably waste at least one hour a week sitting at your computer playing Farmville or some virtual game anyway!
How: Using a conservative bi-weekly amount of $100 to clean a small castle, eliminating this expense will reduce your household expenses by $2,400 per year. Additionally, The Calorie Count website estimates that 233 calories are burned for each hour of housecleaning. So, if you spend the equivalent of 1 hour a week cleaning the house, that’s over 12,000 calories burned a year or 3.5 pounds lost. Just imagine you can hear the cha-ching and picture the fat melting right off your thighs as you push that vacuum!
Results: Lose 3.5 pounds and save over $2,400 per year
Money Saving, Calorie Burning Change # 3 – Wash Your Own Car. Okay, maybe you just don’t want to pull out the bucket and suds up your vehicle yourself. But you can eliminate paying that pricey $10.00 to $15.00 at the Car Spa, where you follow your car through the wash and rinse cycle and then sit and watch 2 guys dry it off.
How: Consider finding a coin-operated self service car wash where you can roll up your sleeves and power spray those bugs off the windshield. At very least, use the drive-through-yourself car wash at the gas station that costs at least half the cost of the car spa. If you spend one hour a week washing or drying your car yourself, you can burn up more than 12,000 calories a year.
Results: Lose 3.5 pounds and save between $250 and $500 a year.
Money Saving, Calorie Burning Change # 4 – Do Your Own Yardwork. Landscapers and pool cleaning companies are not cheap. The cost of these services depends on the size of your yard and what maintenance it requires. If you can handle the yard work yourself, a conservative estimate of your monthly cost savings would be around $150 for twice a month service. Gardening in general burns approximately 310 calories an hour and mowing the lawn 427 calories an hour.
How: Eliminate the landscape service and save $1,800 a year by saving $150 a month. Spending two hours, two times a month working in the yard will burn off 15,000 to 20,000 calories per year. If you can’t take over the entire job, see if you can tackle part of it or start a garden.
Results: Lose 5-6 pounds and save over $1800.
The individual results of these four changes may not sound dramatic, but collectively they could save you between $4,500 and $4,800 a year, more than enough for a romantic cruise for two! And in addition to saving that money, you might find yourself 19 to 23 pounds lighter as you are lounging on that cruise ship! Come on now, isn’t it time to tighten your belt, literally?
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