6 Ways to Be Healthy on a Budget

There is no audio

Download the Goal Trackers from this Episode

These goal trackers will help you visualize your progress and keep you motivated along the way as you pay off your debt and save extra money! You can download all of them for free using the sign-up button below.

Show Notes

Who remembers the ’90s? I know I can’t be the only one who used to snack on Bugles, veg out in front of TGIF, practice my Skip-It moves, or give my pupils a workout with a Magic Eye book. Ah, those were the glory days.

Back then, being healthy was easier. We were younger, sure, but it was also a simpler time.

Nowadays, knowing how to be healthy and how to stay healthy takes time. It takes effort. It takes—dare I say?—money. But it doesn’t have to take all of your money.

In fact, if you learn to manage your money well, it can make it easier to be healthy in other areas of your life. And today we talk about how to do just that! A few friends and experts join me to show us how we can be healthy and happy with food, fitness, fashion and in our relationships!

Grab your scented markers, you guys, because you’re going to want to take notes!

What Does It Mean to Be Healthy?

There’s a funny thing that happens in the summer. We spend more time outside, we’re more active, and we eat more fruit. But we also tend to slack off on our budgets, our workouts, our big to-dos, and anything else that doesn’t exactly fall into the summer fun category.

Just me?

Well, you guys, summer is coming to an end. And if you jumped off the bandwagon of life, you’re not alone. Have you guys seen the June mom vs. July mom meme?

If that doesn’t sum up how our best intentions play out over the course of the summer, I don’t know what does!

But as school starts back up for the kids and life returns to normal, it’s time for us adults to establish a healthy routine of our own. My hope for you is that over the next few months you’ll find ways to be healthier and happier in all areas of your life.

And that process starts with—you guessed it!—good money management.

How to Make a Budget

The best, and I’d say only, way to keep your finances in a healthy place is to create a budget every single month. When you make a budget, you’re telling your money what to do. It puts your good intentions to work!

If you’ve never made a budget before or it’s been a couple of months, I’ve got you covered. Here are a few basics that will help you make your first budget or get you back on track:

  1. Stick with the zero-based budget. Assign every single dollar to a specific category so that your income minus your expenses equals zero.
  2. Consider recommended budget percentages. To help you on your way, keep these suggested percentages in mind:

Giving                          10–15%

Saving                         10–15%

Housing                       25–35%

Utilities                         5–10%

Food                            10–15%

Transportation            10–15%

Health                          5–10%

Insurance                    10–25%

Personal                      10–15%

Recreation                  5–10%

Of course, these percentages are just recommendations. If housing prices are high in your city, you may need to spend more on housing and less in another budget category.

Prioritize your categories appropriately. Give first. I know that may sound like crazy advice for someone who’s trying to get out of debt or save up an emergency fund. But here’s the deal: We’re working on being healthy and whole, right? By living with an open hand, you’ll become more selfless and less selfish—which can change your perspective and the way you live.

Commit to giving a little now until you can give a lot. Then your next priority is to save toward your big money goals. Because if you don’t make saving a priority before spending, it won’t happen. Once those two categories are covered, focus on necessities and then wants.

Look for ways to save big. Maybe you’re looking at the suggested percentages above and thinking, I’m leaning toward the higher end on most of these and the total definitely adds up to more than 100%. Good! Yes, good. Now you know!

All you need to do is look for ways to save. You might reduce your food budget, your recreational spending, or your insurance. Zander Insurance can help with the last one. Winston and I trust them because they offer affordable life insurance that gives us peace of mind.

In fact, a healthy 35-year-old couple looking for $500,000 in coverage on each person could pay as little as $41 a month! You guys, no matter where you are in your financial journey, the savings will help, and the cost is worth it to make sure your family is protected!

Make room in your budget for other expenses.

Save big on life insurance with Zander Insurance today!

Real Talk With Rachel

Where my runners at?

You guys are . . . not my people. I mean, I love you, but you’re crazy!

Okay, so obviously there’s a story here. As you may know, I’m a big fan of working out. Until I’m not. I mean, I’m on and off this fitness train like someone with an unlimited free rides punch card.

So a few months back, a friend convinced me to give running a try. I hate running. But, for some reason, it sounded like a good idea at the time. So I bought the shoes. I bought the socks. I bought into the idea of running a half marathon!

I nearly died running my first mile. (I’m not dramatic at all. I know). But I kept at it, and with two and half weeks of running under my belt, I headed out one Saturday morning for a four-mile run! You guys, I’m pretty sure I deserve a round of applause for this one feat alone.

Not for running four miles—for getting out of bed and into my car to run four miles. Wow. You can probably guess what happened next. One mile in, I thought: Why am I doing this? Two miles in, I saw my car.

And that’s when the battle in my brain began. Quit. No, successful people never quit. Wait, yes, they do! Successful people quit dumb stuff all the time. For me, running is dumb!

So, I got in my car, drove home and—I’ve got to say—I’ve never felt better.

What’s the lesson here, you guys? Should you give up on your own dreams of running a marathon or hiking the Appalachian Trail or swimming faster than your teenage son? No way.

You should, however, stop doing dumb things that keep you from reaching your bigger goals. Are you spending money you don’t have to impress your Instagram followers? Stop! Are you buying things in your thirties and forgetting to save for retirement? Stop. Are you working out every day, spending loads of money and time trying to be a runner when you don’t want to be one? Stop.

Let’s all make sure we’re doing the smart thing in a way that makes the most sense for us.

Track your progress to a healthier you

To help you in your efforts to do smart things, we created a few goal trackers for you. They’ll help you SEE your progress and keep you motivated along the way! You can download all of them for free using the sign-up button below.

How to Be Healthier in Your Relationships

I’m so excited to have my good friend and relationship expert Dr. Les Parrott on the show today. We talk about the biggest thing dragging down good relationships: poor communication.

Have you ever talked with your friend, your parent, or your spouse and thought, The way they’re responding doesn’t match what I said. I feel like they misunderstood me!

Dr. Les Parrott helps us understand this breakdown in communication.

He explains that, after decades of research, psychologists now know men and women come to conversation with two distinct goals in mind.

Men are looking for a report. Women are looking for rapport. Men want the facts and information while women want connection and understanding.

It’s the reason your husband might say, “Get to the point,” and you may respond, “I’m just trying to grasp how you feel.”

A couple in a healthy relationship, Les says, works to remember both viewpoints and looks for ways to bring them together. So, you want to clarify content and reflect feeling. As you do this, you’ll better understand one another and be more tuned in to each other’s emotions.

After all, communication is the lifeblood of relationship—and not just the relationship with your spouse. These tips apply any time you communicate with someone of the opposite gender, be it a friend, parent, child or coworker.

Check out today’s episode for more of Dr. Les Parrott’s wisdom on how to have healthy communication in your relationships!

How to Cook Healthy and Not Waste Money

When it comes to food, there’s just one hard-and-fast rule for eating better on a budget: Make dinner at home.

Sounds easy enough, but we all know how these things go in real life. For example, when chicken hangs out in the fridge too long and goes bad so you order takeout.

The fact remains that eating healthy at home can save you money and calories . . . if you use everything you buy.

And in today’s show, we show you how you can do just that!

My friend Tanya joins me in the kitchen to whip up two healthy and delicious meals from something I’ve started using recently, Home Chef. Home Chef is a meal-kit delivery service that comes directly to your door—all you need to do is open up the box and add the finishing touches!

Here’s what I love about Home Chef:

  • I get to decide exactly which meals they send my way.
  • I can choose between 18 unique new options each week.
  • I cook new foods every week without having to put much thought into it, or fear messing it up.

Today we make the Mojito Lime Chicken Salad with just a little bit of chopping and plating! Praise-hands emoji from this busy mom. We also showcase Home Chef’s Hot Honey Salmon. It only requires a little bit of baking and sautéing because all the ingredients come pre-portioned, which is so nice because you don’t end up wasting food and throwing away money!

And I’ve got exciting news! Home Chef is offering all of you $30 off your first meal if you go to homechef.com/rachel.

Sign up for your first Home Chef meal-kit delivery today and save $30!

How to Be Healthy and Fit

After my running confession earlier, you might think I’ve sworn off fitness for a while. But I haven’t completely!

In today’s episode, Joel, an experienced personal trainer, coaches me through five low-time, high-impact workouts I can do in the comfort of my own home (also known as free exercise!):

  1. Squats
  2. Push-ups
  3. Lunges
  4. Plants
  5. Glute Bridges

As Joel says, for fitness to become a regular part of your life, you have to make it fit into your schedule. I love how I can easily do a few sets of each exercise right in my own bedroom before starting the day—or even in the living room when my kids are playing happily on their own!

How to Be Healthy and Feel Beautiful

This isn’t my favorite part of the show, but it might be a close second. There are few things I love more than a healthy, happy closet. And when I’m working out and eating right, I feel better in my own skin and have more fun choosing outfits and accessories.

The ladies from You Own the Look are here to walk us through a few tips for finding high-end looks without high-end price tags. Things like:

  • Pay attention to the hardware on a handbag—for instance, gold handles instantly make a bag look more expensive and allow it to move seamlessly from day to night.
  • Choose neutral colors. They give you a lot of mix and match options.

To see the outfits they brought to our studio and get more of their tips, check out the fashion segment in today’s episode.

And, above all else, remember this great thought from You Own the Look: “Feeling good in what you’re wearing helps you exude confidence and health. And isn’t that our goal?”

She Works Hard Saving Money

It takes a lot to beat out clothes, but this segment always tops all the other ones on the show. I absolutely love hearing how you’re reaching your money goals. Here are two of the best from today:

“My husband and I are on Baby Step 2. Both of us are working two jobs, picking up extra work here and there, and we recently cash-flowed our girls’ schooling for next year! Saved and ready to pay in August! Praising Jesus along the way!” — Morgan

“Six-month emergency fund funded. Now to pay off the house and save for a new car and new flooring.” — Trudy

I hope you all have a great week working toward a healthier, happier you. And remember, finding contentment in all the areas we covered comes down to our money habits.

If you’re looking for some resources to help you get started, we have a great deal going on right now. You can get my book Love Your Life, Not Theirs plus a yearlong membership to both Financial Peace University and EveryDollar at a special price.

I hope they help as you take control of your money and create a life you love!


Sponsors pay the producer of this show, The Lampo Group, LLC, advertising fees for mentioning their services or products during programing. Advertising fees are not based upon or otherwise tied to any product sale or business transacted between any consumer or sponsor. The following sponsors have paid for the programing you are viewing:

  • Zander Insurance
  • Home Chef