Workout Clothes: How to Save Money

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I was asked a while back to write about saving money on workout clothes, but for some reason I thought I already had. Turns out I’d written about regular clothes shopping, but not specifically workout clothes, so here goes nothing! A lot of the principles on fit still apply from my previous blog, so this entry will be more about saving that precious cash!

Let Go of Name Brands

That logo doesn’t help your performance, I promise, but it will hurt your wallet. A lot of stores like Walmart and Target have their own branded workout gear. I happen to really like some of Walmart’s Danskin line for working out, and it’s always reasonably priced. I also often find a lot of it on…

The Clearance Rack

Every time I go to Walmart or Target, I always browse the clearance racks, regardless of whether or not I need fitness clothing. You never know when you might come across an adorable running skirt or those perfect capris for less than ten bucks a pop! This is especially true as the seasons change and running shorts and ribbed tanks are no longer warm enough for outside workouts. Remember, summer always comes around again!

Discount Stores

Places like Kohl’s and Old Navy have lots of inexpensive workout clothes. In fact, the outfit I wore when doing kettlebells in Dr. Oz The Good Life Magazinethe outfit I wore when doing kettlebells in Dr. Oz The Good Life Magazine was from Old Navy! Kohl’s always had big clearance sections, too, lots of good stuff there.

Outlet Malls

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This is the place to find name brand gear at discounted prices. Our local outlet mall has Nike, Adidas, Merrell, UnderArmour, etc. I got two great active wear dresses at Merrell for $20 apiece, and once again, these places also often have clearance racks for extra savings. Also, check out the smaller shops. Our outlet has a British store called Mountain Warehouse with really great prices on hiking pants and jackets for cooler weather. I snagged several really great wicking tanks for running for a mere $7.99 apiece this summer at their super sale.

Thrift Stores

I got the best pair of Nike capris at my local thrift store. They were practically brand new, fit great, they’re an EXTRA SMALL (I’m a firm medium so this was a surprise) and they cost me SIX BUCKS. Yes you have to spend some time hunting through the racks but it’s worth it to save 80% off retail. Plus, I happen to enjoy thrifting for clothes: it’s a challenge I find fun.

Hand Me Downs

I’ve been the lucky recipient of both sports bras and running pants thanks to my cousin’s Zulily addiction. For those of you who don’t know, Zulily is a daily deals e-commerce company with limited time discounted stuff. The items are so discounted they don’t accept returns, and I occasionally benefit!

Win Free Stuff

This is sort of a joke but last year at the Roadrunner Sports Adventure run I won a gift certificate for free apparel and a pair of shoes! I have won absolutely nothing this year (okay except one person’s hatred and the respect of my peers) but hey, it’s free!

Don’t Skimp

Use the money you save on less important items like capris, tanks, hair ties and sunglasses and spend a little more on sports bras (especially if you’re larger chested), socks and especially shoes if you’re running. Spend the damn money on good shoes or run the risk of injury, I know from experience here.

Spend One One or Two Special Pieces

grab lifeWant that sweatshirt that says “Strong is the New Skinny”?  Maybe you’re like me and all you want is a tank that says “Grab Life By The Bells”? (I can help you with that.) Spend the money on a few pieces you love for the look, so you can feel your best when getting your sweat on.

Saving money on workout clothes takes patience and some know how, but it can be done.

What’s your favorite way to save money on workout clothes?

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Travel Snacks!

road-trip-shitIn case you didn’t figure it out from the Weekly Menu post this week, The Hubs and I are headed to Chicago on Thursday to visit some family. Not only that, but we’re DRIVING and bringing Bingley! It’s going to be a whirlwind long weekend trip full of food and dogs and for me, running. We’ll be staying with my cousin Susan and her husband, and I’ll be joining her running training group on Sunday, so I’m sure I’ll get plenty of fitness in on this trip.

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We all know I’m not willing to spend my hard earned money on this junk.

I love a good road trip. When The Hubs and I were still dating (and living in separate countries) I used to have no problems making the 500 mile trip from the Philadelphia area to Ottawa, Ontario, Canada on the regular, all by my wee lonesome. The drive from Philly to Chicago is a bit longer (okay, TWICE as long) so I plan on packing lots of snacks to enjoy while we’re stretching our legs at various rest stops. (Why do they call them rest stops anyway? I prefer to run around and pee than rest. Let’s rename them “Run Around and Pee Stops”! I think Bingley would agree with me there. *gasp!!!* That abbreviates to RAP Stops, which is entertaining on a whole other level! Seriously, why have we not done this?!)

Here are a few snacks I’ll be trying this trip:

The Salty

Garlic Bread Chickpeas from Annie at The Garlic Factory

We both love chickpeas in any way, shape or form. Roasted they’re a great crunchy snack for the road that won’t leave tiny crumbs everywhere. This garlic bread flavored version really makes me salivate just thinking about it, so we’re gonna give this a shot!

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Healthy DIY Lunchables by Marla Meridith

Lunchables are super easy to eat but let’s face it, The Hubs is in his 40s and I’m in my 30s, so bologna and American cheese just aren’t our thing. Okay, they’re not MY thing. So I picked out an extra sharp aged cheddar and he accented it with summer sausage for our own version of a Lunchables, based on the below recipe.

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The Sweet

Muesli Snacking Cookies by The Kitchn

Cookies are always a go-to for road trips. These cookies are only sweetened with honey, and made with whole grains for a much healthier, even breakfast-worthy treat! Plus, I love muesli. Does anyone not like muesli (who know what muesli is)?

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Image Credit Izy Hossack via The Kitchn

Three Seed Brittle by Suzanne McCarthy

There’s something about brittles that always makes my mouth water. This brittle forgoes the hard toffee candy and uses just enough sticky sweetness to hold together those healthy, crunchy, nutty seeds.

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3 Ingredient Peanut Butter & Honey Cereal Bars by Healthy Food For Living

Cereal bars are always great, and these are super simple. Sweetened with honey and made to stick with peanut butter, these oat cereal squares are far healthier than marshmallow based versions.

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What’s your favorite homemade road trip snack? Let me know in the comments!

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Stuff You Can Use to Workout That You Already Have

I know that not all of us have access to a gym or can afford to keep fancy workout equipment in our homes. That’s okay! There are tons of exercises you can do with some basic stuff you already have in your house! Check out just the handful I found:

Chairs

Don’t even try to turn around and tell me you don’t own a chair! I don’t believe you!

Triceps Dips

Chair Pushups

Lat Pull Downs

Chair Planks

Towels

For Abs

For Forearms

Water Jugs

Biceps Curls

A one-gallon water jug weighs about 8 lbs full so it’s a good weight to add to your collection. If you fill it with dirt or sand it’s closer to 12 lbs. Varying the level of water inside adds to the difficulty level due to the “slosh factor”.

Farmer’s Carry

This is the world’s simplest workout. I buy spring water to keep at work because I don ‘t have access to potable water to drink. Now I drink a LOT of water, 1.25 gallons a day,  so I buy 2.5 gallon jugs. These weigh 20 lbs apiece. I often carry one in each hand from the grocery store near work back to my office. It’s only 1/6 of a mile, but with 20 lbs in each hand, it makes the walk a bit more challenging. You can really feel it in your grip, arms and shoulders. (The guy in the video has 8 gallon jugs, so he’s on the extreme end, but you can vary the weight to your strength.)

And and and…

So you see you don’t need a lot of extra stuff to get a good workout in! I bet you even have all these things at home already, don’t you? GO WORKOUT!

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