According to new research conducted by St George Bank, Australians, on average, are spending up to $250 a month in the quest to be fit and healthy—with many of us well and truly exceeding this figure. The survey—involving 1,000 Australians, both male and female—revealed that majority are spending on vitamins and supplements (70%) followed by activewear (54%) and gym memberships (45%). Furthermore, only 42% of those surveyed said they have a specific budget set aside for these purchases. “While it’s great to see a focus on physical wellbeing, it’s very important to balance this with your financial wellbeing,” said Ross Miller, general manager of St George Retail Bank. “Ensuring you have a budget in place for your physical wellbeing goals means you’re much better placed to retain your healthy habits throughout the entire year—not just for a few months.” In the study, social media was highlighted as a driving force behind spend, with 34% admitting that platforms like Instagram influences them to make health and fitness purchases.
The most popular health and fitness programs to come out of the survey are said to include Weight Watchers, Lite N’ Easy, diet trends such as keto and paleo as well as Kayla Itsines’ renowned BBG workouts. Looking to cut your monthly spend? Whilst vitamins and supplements such as protein powder can definitely have a place in a healthy, balanced diet, most health professionals will tell you that consuming wholefoods in their intended form can be just as, if not more beneficial—and with some costing upwards of $50, it pays to do your research. Be sure to seek the advice of your medical or healthcare practitioner to ensure which supplements are right for you. When it comes to activewear, look out for sales and invest in basics for repeat wear. Focus on smart purchases such as a new pair of runners that have reached their expiry date rather than another pair of printed tights you’ll only wear once. Use your gym membership? Great! If it’s nothing more than a weekly deduction from your bank account with zero return, take advantage of budget-friendly fitness activities like a coastal walk, outdoor run or boxing session in the park to get your sweat on. Otherwise, apps like MINDBODY allow you to trial your favourite fitness classes, studios and gyms at a discounted rate. Subscribing to do-anywhere apps like SWEAT, Centr and JETSWEAT also work out cheaper over the course of the year compared to any physical gym membership so it might be worth giving them a go, too. Spend all your money on food? Here’s everything you need to absolutely nail your weekly meal prep!