Looking at my cluttered desk and the chaos around my house, you’d never really know I was a minimalist. But in theory, I am. I’ve never been one for material items and I don’t love to shop. I don’t need the nicest shoes or clothes. In fact, until kids came along, my husband and I preferred to celebrate birthdays, anniversaries and holidays with experiences, rather than gifts. So we’d go out for a nice dinner, go to a musical or go for a skiing weekend. So I guess when thinking about where I splurge and save when it comes to my health and fitness — it all makes sense. Let me break it down.
The gym. Like Jenn, my big splurge is without a doubt our gym membership. It covers our whole family, and it is decidedly not cheap at all. At all. But the gym is super nice, has a lot of good features, an awesome outdoor pool, tons of fitness classes and two hours of childcare included. Which leads my inner cheapskate dialogue: “Do you really need the gym? You’re not really using it …” You see, I have a 5-month-old baby. And I have been so hesitant to take the kids to the gym in the dead of winter because of all the bugs and germs that get passed around. But taking my baby is particularly nerve-wracking. I started taking her older brother to the gym daycare at around the same age, but it was summer, which makes a huge difference in the bug factor. And now with outbreaks of diseases like measles? Well, it makes me nervous because she can’t even get vaccinated for that yet. I’d like to keep the membership, but I’m feeling guilty for having it and not using it much … and I’d also feel guilty for using it! A dilemma.
Food. I never flinch when I go to the grocery store. I make a meal plan, I write a list, and I get said items. Sure, I’ll shop the items that are on sale, but if an item on my list isn’t on sale? I just buy it. If I want berries, I’ll buy them, even if they’re expensive. If I want cherries, I will spend a fortune because I can’t get them all year and they are worth every darn penny. I buy bagged lettuce because it’s worth it to me for the convenience. I’ll go to my favorite meat market and splurge on a nice steak. I save money in certain ways at the store, but what I’m saying is that I will always buy the produce I want no matter what.
Everything else. Like Jenn and Kristen said, one of the perks of writing for a fitness website is getting to try out awesome new gear and shoes and write about them. So punch me in the face out of anger, but I haven’t really had to buy much in the way of yoga pants or running shoes in a long while. And when I do? I’m more likely to hit up Target or Old Navy for the cheap-but-cute duds rather than spend a fortune. I’m not an experienced runner who needs a lot of technical gear, so standard fare works pretty well for me for my typical Zumba or home workout! Oh, but one thing I would totally splurge on in the gear department: ski gear. That is one area you can’t scrimp and you don’t want to because you want to be warm and protected on the mountain! Plus, when I do go again, I’ll hopefully have a couple of kiddos to outfit, so I’ll be glad I’ve been saving as that will cost a small fortune.
Where do you spend and save when it comes to fitness? —Erin