February 2, 2017. By Lori Patterson:

It’s official: physical health affects financial health. With rates of health care consistently on the rise, our wallets are indeed directly impacted by your physical fitness and wellbeing, especially as we age. According to an AARP survey, less than five percent of adults over the age of 50 participate in 30 minutes of physical activity each day, yet regular exercise reduces risk of obesity, depression, and in-turn reduces many health care costs. The dangerous combination of these facts creates the scary statistic that 55% of early retirees leave the workforce not for leisure, but because of poor health or disability reasons.

I love the winter months. The beauty of snowfall and refreshing chill in the air is are some of the reasons I moved north from Tennessee. As an avid outdoor runner, however, the cold can also bring along cabin fever and the temptation to bundle up with a book rather than hit the treadmill. Here are my three tips to get or stay motivated this winter:

  • Gym Membership Payment Health care cost rise in correlation with poor fitness; why add the cost of your gym membership to this amount? Most gyms bill on a monthly basis regardless of your attendance. Remember that when you are not going you’re not only losing the $50 of the membership, your adding the cost of your poor health.
  • Options, Options, Options Running outdoors Spring through Fall is my go-to activity, so I like to use the winter months to try new classes or fitness centers. Knowing that my routine is just months away, I have my winter activities such as snowshoeing and kickboxing (to make the indoor treadmill running more bearable) but it is also fun to try new classes with friends as well, such as yoga or local boot camps.
  • Comfort Food Let’s face it- winter equals comfort food. With this season leading to longer commutes and darker workdays, the last thing I want to stress about it what’s on the menu. While a clean, nutritious eating plan encourages overall good health, committing to a work-out also gives me the freedom to enjoy whatever may be served on game day!

We are truly sincere when we wish you a safe and healthy season. It may not feel as if your daily health decisions will affect your portfolio; but, you certainly have more control over your fitness decisions than you do the markets and that is somewhat satisfying. As the Boston Marathon approaches, I’ll be sharing tips via our Twitter account @Centerpoint_Now for anyone who would like to begin a running routine or for those of you who may wonder just how those marathoners do it!