Carolyn Chaffey
A while back I made a committment to never spend another penny in the diet industry(excluding a gym membership). This has made me very creative in finding free services and advice.

The best free service I have found is Sparkpeople. It is a very good way to monitor your habits, your results and to find motivation both from success stories and other actual people on the path with you. I really like it. There is another similar website called Fitday. I personally haven`t used it but I`ve heard good things about that site as well.

There are a couple of other things that have helped me for free. The Couch to 5k is a program of training beginners to run 5k. It`s a wonderful program. You run three times a weeks starting with intervals of walking and running and then building up over the course of 9 weeks until you are able to run 5k. I did it last year and it was wonderful. I loved running and it was amazing at how fast your body grows and strenthens. I am now starting over at week one after a long lazy winter. Next year I`m either joining a gym or picking up a treadmill so I don`t have to start over. So much for not spending money I guess!

When I started the couch to 5k program it was difficult for me to do the intervals properly. You need a stopwatch for the minutes and it was strange to run and look at a stop watch. I was using the one on my iPod and then someone in my couch to 5k support groups suggested I download the podcasts to use. Someone had made podcasts for each week with music and it was another great free tool to help me along the 9 weeks.

Then there is the One hundred pushup challenge. A similar idea. You start with as many as you can do and build every day from there. You follow the program and work up to 100!

There are a lot of free advice, free services and free support. You don`t need to pay a lot of money. You just need to get into a space of feeling ready to do this and you will!

If you know of any FREE fitness services please post them here. I plan on doing links to them here so they can always be accessed easily by anyone who needs them.

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