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3 Easy Steps to Get Physically and Financially Fit

Health is the greatest gift, contentment the greatest wealth, faithfulness the best relationship. — Buddha

It may sound silly, but there is a strong nexus between your health and your wealth when it comes to the underpinning principles that govern your life.

I can imagine the discomfort some feel at being overweight when others joke about it. I can also guess at the pain endured constantly from your own mental chatter when you are under a mountain of debt.

I have some thoughts to share with you that can help to turnaround your life for the best yet to come.

1. Get back into the black.

The basic tenet of weight loss is to eat less and exercise more. All you need is to develop a plan to avoid cluttering your body with excess calories. By making prudent choices with the food you eat and by burning excess calories, you begin your invigorating journey towards fitness.

By the same token, the basic tenet of prudent debt management is to spend less and use more of what you already own. When you consciously make a self-commitment to squash the bug of  impulse buying and learn to consume what you already have, you begin your own turnaround for financial wellness.

2. Follow the three-step plan.

If you’re overweight or if you’re under a pile of debt, thoughts to regain control of your life may frighten you. The truth is that if you understand how simple it is to get back into the cockpit of your life jet, you’ll soon regain control of your life.

The three steps to control debt are:

1. Stop adding more debt.

  • Pay for everything with cash – This act itself will create an awareness to spend less for the simple reason that when we pay with our cash, we tend to think more consciously before allowing another dollar to leave our pocket.
  • Make a shopping list – When we plan before shopping to make conscious choices about what we need and not what we want, we can control our impulse spending to buy yet another item on sale.

2. Use everything you have.

  • Ask why you want to buy twiceYour ego is a spoiled child. Ask yourself several times whether you really needed to buy that nice looking shirt? What did you do with the ones you bought just a few months ago?

3. Start trimming your debt.

  • Pay bills on time – This habit is essential for your financial well-being. I use auto payments  to avoid late payment charges.
  • Pay high interest rate credit cards first – Paying several credit card bills is a major act. List all of your credit cards in a spreadsheet and start paying highest interest rate card first;keep doing this till you pay off all your credit cards in full.

Now, if you have begun to wonder how these three steps relate to your excess weight then read on!

The three steps to control weight are:

1. Stop adding more fat.

  • Fasting Fasting is both a primary means of detoxifying body, shedding extra weight and a wonderful aid to our inner peace. Fasting is the first step towards a mind control to avoid food intake that can exacerbate our unbalanced diet. Please check with a healthcare professional first.
  • Balanced diet Eat steamed vegetables, beans, rice and whole grain. Avoid meat, poultry and white rice.

2. Burn extra calories.

3. Start trimming your fat.

  • Drink water – Water drinking flushes the kidneys and liver, enabling them to remove toxic, unwanted substances. This also helps reduce weight. Drinking water also suppresses the feelings of hunger. You may be mistaking hunger pangs for thirst signals.

Once you set a limit in your life to spend only for your needs and to eat only when you are hungry, you can stop adding both fat and more debt to your life.

Once you start taking care of the things you own and use them to the fullest — from your used car to the plate of food –  you’ll enjoy life with what you have rather than feel self-pity for what you don’t have.

Similarly, when you start exercising or running, playing tennis or helping your neighbor, you’ll have fun and start using every extra calorie in your body rather than adding more by munching that super sized Big Mac.

Additional hints to help you shape up your weight and debt

Have a budget.

When our life is in chaos, it’s an outer expression of the chaos that exists in our mind. We’ve simply given up the courage to find and live for our life long purpose. We’ve declared a defeat in our mind. If you take time to reflect, most of your troubles begin with a lack of budgeting. If we don’t budget, impulsive spending takes over our mind. Similarly, if we don’t budget our food intake, impulsive eating habits kick-start our cravings for the toxic food that we need least for our well-being.

Learn to be frugal.

I’m a frugal guy, so I’ve a natural inclination for this approach, but frugality can also be your best friend when it comes to trimming fat and debt from your life. Being a cheap skate is not a bad habit. It teaches you the most basic and profound laws of life — Live within your means.

How to stay both physically and financially fit?

In our culture of super-size everything from Big Macs to big cars, we are conditioned to yearn for more. Once you realize that life only needs enough to make you feel happy from within, you will be happy to eat only when you are hungry and not to stuff your body with loads of calories that produce more fat. When you learn to live happily with enough, you’ll stop catering to your own impulsive feelings to purchase another pair of shoes that only collect more dust in the long run. By learning to set limits for both your eating and spending habits, you’ll begin to control your life sooner than you thought possible.

Once you value your own money, you’ll have a different perspective about your spending habits. By the same token, your frugal habits put a damper on your impulsive desire to eat more. As opposed to the general belief, frugality is not about sleeping on mattress with a big hole or starving yourself –- it’s simply a habit that helps you make conscious decisions.

I’m sure that you have tried ways to shed some weight and painful debt. Let’s have a conversation to lighten up to stay both physically and financially fit.

So many people spend their health gaining wealth, and then have to spend their wealth to regain their health. — A.J. Reb Materi

(Photo Courtesy: Photostream)

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Comments (33)

I really like this combo idea of tying together the debt and health! It makes a lot of sense though.

For some controversy, the Primal viewpoint says that meat and fats aren’t bad for us, it just depends on where we get them from. Conventional hormone-packed factory-raised meat? Probably bad. Highly-refined, or worse, hydrogenated fats? Probably bad. Meat raised on a natural diet? Good. Fats from natural sources, without the heavy processing? Good.

I really like this post and where you’re going with the site. Great stuff :)

Thank you for shedding light on benefits of eating meat from natural sources. I’m vegetarian, so naturally, I have bias towards diet full of fiber rich vegetables.

The moment a person would consider taking his health seriously his health would begin to improve. same is with financial health.

Nice points mentioned :)
I see you are moving closer to break the 200K barrier. congratulations

Hi Shilpan, Nice points mentioned

The moment a person would consider taking his health seriously his health would begin to improve. same is with financial health.

I see you are moving closer to break the 200K barrier. congratulations

There is definitely a solid connection between ones health and wealth. You can general tell what someones financial picture looks like by simply observing their physical fitness.

It’s rare that I read posts that discuss the combination of the two. Great post!

Anthony, I agree with you. Often, your outer stat depicts inner state as well. Those who live simple life tend to unclutter their lives so that they can focus on what is most important.

They’re definitely similar, and I think a lot of people who struggle with their finances also struggle with weight. Though I’m not too sure how easy the three steps are!

It may sound stereotypical, but financial stress can cause obesity.

These are great tips Shilpan! I really like the first step in the three-step plan for debt: stop adding more debt.

That is so basic and common-sense, yet so many people don’t do it or realize that’s an ABSOLUTELY necessary step to get out of debt.

People try to “get out of debt” while still going into it…lol…you just can’t do it!

Agreed. Common sense is so uncommon in our world. :)

Paying with cash – I did this as an experiment once and I can definitely say you tend to spend less.

A good technique to keep spending in check.

MC, I agree with you. I rarely use credit card. I use cash and debit card most of the times. And it works.

I didn’t even realize you mentioned me in this post..Thank you for that! You hide those links so well that I don’t even notice them sometimes (well, most of the time).

Jason, I enjoy reading your blog posts!

[…] 3 Easy Steps to Get Physically and Financially Fit — I just love how health and personal finance is tied together in this post. […]

I am starting an INSANITY blog on Monday which will be my way of getting physically fit. :) Congrats on breaking 200k

Congratulations on your continued success. I am sure that your new blog will be a huge success!

Good advice! People don’t realize how much these two sets of habit reflect upon one another. Learning how to have discipline and control can help you with your finances, weight, your career, your marriage, and countless other facets of your life. Like everything else, it is a skill that must be developed and trained!

Agreed. Both physical and financial fitness require strict discipline and regular work-outs(mental and physical) :)

Those are some nice ways to become fit. I think to be fit one has to be a little tough on himself. Discipline is required to be fit. And all kinds of fitness are correlated

There are a new times I submit my comment on your website but it is missed, I don’t know a problem with plugin or what?

It takes a lot of discipline to accomplish either one of these things. I think it’s all about the mind set. You can become financially or physically fit – or both, if you really want it. Great post!

katie, our physical and financial fitness starts with thoughts that we harbor; so, I agree with you that you can achieve both regardless of where you stand today if you make commitment to yourself.

[…] Street Smart Finances – 3 Steps to Get Physically and Financially Fit […]

I’m a fan of a more balanced approach when it comes to finances and fitness. Set up a system that will work today and 5 years from now. My problem with fasting, cutting out fun, fad diets, cutting up credit cards is that they are unrealistic and not sustainable. I live by the mantra if I’m going to change it’s going to be a permanent change and have to work in the future as well.

Hi Shilpan,

I have included this post at my site’s weekly roundup

I have included this post at my site weekly roundup.

on a different note, I think there is a problem with a comment functionality in your blog Shilpan. My comments are not getting published?

[…] Street Smart Finance, with Three Easy Steps to Get Physically and Financially Fit […]

WOW, This article is amazing! indeed, to fully enjoy our life we must be successful in all aspects of our life..

[…] Street Smart Finance mentioned my post Budgeting 101: The Rules to the Game […]

[…] 3 Easy Steps to Get Physically and Financially Fit on Street Smart Finance […]

[…] 3 Easy Steps to Get Physically and Financially Fit on Street Smart Finance […]

[…] Street Smart Finance wrote: 3 Steps to Get Physically and Financially Fit […]

Remember theirs good debt and bad.