Losing lbs not pounds

‘The diet starts in January’ will be a well-used phrase over the festive period but those hoping to lose pounds on the scales could end up wasting pounds from their savings or bank balance.

With the start of the year notorious for those who have over-indulged promising this New Year will be the one to make a weight-change, Yorkshire Building Society is reminding people to consider the financial cost of dieting and hitting the gym to make sure beating the bulge doesn’t hurt your wallet.

Think twice before signing on the dotted line – gym memberships are popular investments at the turn of the year, but many come with lengthy contracts and upfront joining fees. As fitness resolutions can often begin to wane a few weeks into the year, consider free trials or rolling contracts to let you ‘try before you buy’ or to give you a get-out clause if needed.

Pick a package to suit your needs – look for membership packages that meet your intentions. Do you need a premium fitness centre with gymnasium, personal trainers and all the latest equipment if you only want to swim? You can often pay as you go at local authority pools.

Weekly fees might not sound a lot, but it all adds up - popular weight-loss plans such as Weight Watchers and Slimming World may seem like a small price to pay each week to keep you on track, but over the course of a year can amount to more than £300 [i] a year.

Say goodbye to a personal trainer – many people say they pay for a personal trainer to keep them motivated. An average training session can cost in the region of £30 a time, or £1,500 a year for a weekly commitment, so bring friends on board your fitness journey and motivate each other in the park or consider sharing sessions between a group of you.

Don’t get all the gear if you’ve no idea – adding the latest fitness wear and running shoes to your wardrobe might seem motivating in January, but if they’re going to collect dust from February it will be a wasted investment. You don’t need to look good to work out. Wait until you’re sure you’ll continue with the regime before upgrading your gear.

Swap the gym for the park – fitness doesn’t have to involve regular monthly outgoings; pull on your trainers and head outside. The great outdoors provides a free fitness playground without costing the Earth.

Louise Halliwell, Senior Manager for Savings at Yorkshire Building Society, said:

“You would be hard pushed to find someone who doesn’t think they have over-indulged in December, thanks to parties, work dos and plenty of festive treats.


“Whatever the motivation, losing weight and getting fit doesn’t always have to cost a fortune."

“Many people mark the New Year with a number of resolutions – watching the pounds while losing the pounds is just one of a number of things you could do to help get the year off to a good financial start and encourage good savings habits at the same time as getting yourself into better shape.”


[i] Weight Watchers £10.70 registration fee and £6.25/week x 52 weeks = £325 or Slimming World £10.00 registration fee and £4.95 x 52 weeks = £257.40.

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