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Posted: December 10, 2012

3 exercises that are budget and schedule friendly

By Susan Yoo-Lee

Should we already start thinking about 2013?  Yes!  It’s only a few weeks until we ring in the New Year.  With the holidays all lumped together like jumbo lumped crab, the time flies by and we suddenly find ourselves in a party dress bringing in the New Year (for me, more like watching the New Year’s Eve special  on TV, with my kids sleeping next to me).

Christmas after Thanksgiving, dinner after dinner, not many of us our heavily focused on our waistlines.  We just want to relax, eat our childhood favorite treats and cuddle by the fireplace sipping on hot cocoa.  But once we move onto a new year, reality sets in (and maybe even 5 pounds).

Whether you’ve set your New Year’s resolutions or not, many of us are constantly reminded of our health and how we should stay active to live longer, be happier and stay healthier.  

For those of you that want a head start on your health before the New Year kicks in, I’ve got some exercises that won’t cost you an arm and a leg, and you can do it on your own time.

Stroller Strides:  If you’re a mom, exercising is probably the most difficult thing to squeeze into your very limited schedule.  Not only are you low on sleep, but the thought of taking out a little bit of nap time in exchange for exercising, just doesn’t sound fun. 

With Stroller Strides, you take your strolling to the next level.  You meet in a group setting with other mothers or fathers and you exercise together.  It’s a combination of exercises including planks, lunges, stretching and yes, you get to do them with your baby!  Not only do you get to bond with your baby, you also create a support group with other parents around you.  If you can’t make the class, you can always do the exercises on your own time (that’s the great thing about Stroller Strides).

Prices range from city to city.  I’ve seen classes around me in Los Angeles for $10-$15, but in other cities you can see prices as low as $2.50 per class, if you buy them as a package.  In my local area, they have a free Saturday class for dads and your first class is always free

Corebody Reformer:  I hate exercise equipments with a passion, but I love this one.  It’s an all-in-one yoga, pilates, and dance workout.  I’ve danced most of my life, so when I think about working out, I immediately gravitate towards movements like yoga and pilates.

If you don’t want the bulky look of lifting weights, but get the same health benefits, this is the perfect equipment for you.  Not only does it keep you centered by engaging your abdominal muscles at all times but it also stretches them with every movement.  Read my more in-depth review on the Corebody Reformer.

You can try it for 30 days for $24.95 (plus S&H) or you can purchase it for $249.95.  My old reformer group classes in studio were $30 per class.  You can do this workout in the comfort of your home, on your schedule, for a lot less money!

Empower Cardio Core Fitness Hoop:  I have seen so many hula hoop weightloss stories, I had to include this one on the list.  Not only is hula hooping fun, you also get to tighten those abdominal muscles.

This hula hoop weighs 3 lbs, so it’s no easy stroll in the park.  However, you’ll get the benefit of weight training on your tummy.  Plus, you can do a friendly competition of hula hooping with your friends and children to make this exercise a fun experience for everyone.

This retails for $39.99 but you can get it for less than $30 at many stores.  It probably costs less than your 1 month gym membership.  You can do this on your own time, at a family party, or with a group of friends.  Get those abdominals tight for next year’s summer season (yes, I’m already thinking ahead).

So while we’re not quite at 2013, you can start planning for it now.  Even if you’re not in the mood to exercise during this holiday or simply short on time, you can take advantage of the holiday offers to save money on classes and items.  Take charge of your health without spending too much and doing it on your own time!

Susan Yoo-Lee is the editor of Savings.com personal finance blog and founder of Mommas in the House blog.  When she’s not coming up with the next big thing, she’s chasing her 2 girls around the park.


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