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dollarsMany of us love getting the best things at the best prices. With economy or (egads!) a budget in mind, we calculate the value of myriad things–from meals to clothes to kitchen gadgets to skincare products and beyond. Sometimes we overvalue things: for instance, when we pay for a meal based on the popularity of, or simply our desire to eat in, a given restaurant. At other times we undervalue things: for instance, when we buy a household cleaner without considering potency, effectiveness, and impact among others.

Now, fear not, my intention is neither to chide you for paying too much for that meal, nor to reprimand you for paying too little for that cleaner. My goal is to illustrate how many of us estimate worth, and to point out how some of us may be undervaluing our health in the process.

In this instance I’m as guilty as can be: I recently let myself be lulled into not joining a local gym because our building had what I deemed to be an adequate one. Just over a year and a half later, with a recently purchased gym membership in tow, I can tell you that I undervalued my health by opting for the building-based, “no cost” option. The adequate gym proved to be anything but and my health (via fitness) suffered in the interim.

I do understand that there are many other considerations besides financial ones surrounding the choice of, if not the use of, a gym (or other fitness-related venue). There are motivational, locational, and time-based considerations, among others. With these in mind, my take is this: If you have the motivation to go, all other considerations become challenges to overcome and not obstacles to be limited or stopped by. That said, many of us have surmounted these and similar challenges and still could benefit from a closer inspection of the value we place on our fitness and, by extension, our health.

I also understand that many struggle to make ends meet and have other financial priorities, but the bottom line is this: If you occasionally splurge elsewhere and skimp on your gym, you may be unnecessarily undervaluing your health. Some signs of skimping may involve decreased interest and/or motivation, declining happiness and/or enjoyment, diminished stamina and/or fitness, and limited tolerance and/or positivity in relation to a given gym or fitness-related venue/activity. I think it’s fair to say that none of these outcomes positively contribute to our health or our lives.

Only you can know whether or not you’re appropriately valuing your health as it relates to your fitness. You may have a perfect, fitness-oriented regimen that is highly and/or appropriately valued. You may also, like me, benefit from a good bit of self-nudging to more appropriately value certain things that impact your health. If so, I hope that you’ll take a look at how you value your health via fitness and that you’ll ask yourself whether or not you’re assigning the best value? Among other things, you might just find that a few more dollars leads to increased motivation, enjoyment, stamina, and positivity–at very least in relation to your present gym. Whatever you find, I hope it inspires a happier, healthier you!

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