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Exercising on a tight budget

We all want to trim the fat these days, but tightening our belts shouldn’t mean exorcising exercise. The economic environment may be all doom and gloom, but we can devise ways to weather the recession when it comes to our workouts.

We may have to walk away from the gym and give up those expensive exercise classes for a while, but we’ll be fine. We’ll reshape our workouts in a more fiscally friendly place, such as the local park or our own backyard. The bottom line is: we don’t need to sacrifice our health for our wealth.

With less time and money, how can we tighten our workouts — and our bellies — without shrinking our wallets? We’ll combine our cardio and resistance training into one exercise session, and invest in some basic, inexpensive, portable equipment such as a medicine ball, mat, jump rope and exercise bands. Next, we’ll choose 10 to 15 exercises that begin and end with cardio intervals. Then, after every three resistance exercises, we’ll add some cardio intervals to keep our heart rates elevated.

Depending on our fitness levels and available workout time, we can perform up to three rounds of these exercises for a heart pounding, invigorating training session.

Even if our portfolios are not performing as well as expected, we can still take stock in a good, healthy workout. And finally, while stretching our budgets, we can’t forget to stretch our muscles, too!