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Alberta’s Recession Does not Have to Mean a Cut-back on Personal Fitness

Justine Klettke
Employment rates are in an economic downturn and not forecasted to return to normal until next year, reports the Calgary division of Diversified Staffing, a popular temporary staffing agency with 3 bases in Alberta [1].

This could mean some bad news for the province’s financial bottom lines. But this is also a season to beware of Albertans’ growing waistlines. While many laid off Albertans are still pounding more pavement looking for jobs, they may want to still watch that they are getting enough exercise.

recession Many workplaces know the value of keeping their employees fit. Nico Pronk and colleagues suggest that strength-training exercise programs implemented in workplaces, especially when implemented twice a week for 10 weeks or longer have numerous health outcomes such as “neck pain, shoulder pain, upper extremity pain, lower back pain, blood pressure, flexibility, and headache reduction[2]. Also, more pertinent may be their proven evidence towards the “maintenance of work ability and reduction in absenteeism,” state the authors. But what happens when times are tough and people can no longer rely of their workplaces to motivate and fund their work-out routines?

When people start to cut their costs, their initial savings might not be worth the slow creep to weight gain. According to Justin Thomas Sanchez, Reebok Sponsored Athlete and trainer at Drill Fitness in NYC, eliminating exercise from a daily routine is not a good idea. He states that from his experience, even the best results of a healthy diet are still 30% dependent on fitness [3]. While this might seem to support the theory that little cuts can yield an overall benign effect, when people wonder where the excess pounds are coming from on the scale, this may be one budget cut that backfired.

Continuing that workout at home could be an option for those who simply cannot afford the gym lifestyle, and finding a routine could take a little research. Men’s Fitness shares “8 at Home Workouts to Lose Fat and Build Muscle” on their website. Also, Women’s Health sharesThe 5-minute Equipment Free Total Body Workout”.

If budget cuts are what is necessary, try to steer clear of sites that offer you a lifestyle workout plan, but require a charge.

weight gain Also, if your yearly income has been cut to the point that you are under $24 600 per annum for one person, $30 625 for two (see chart in link provided for more annums per household), are on AISH, are a child, or a recent immigrant, you may qualify for a government supplemented pass to the City of Edmonton’s recreational facilities. Additionally in Edmonton, 75% is awarded off a certain number of programs and program materials with this pass [4]. In Calgary, fee assistance is available for almost all registered programs, offering adults fee assistance of 90% on programs up to a maximum subsidy of $50 [5]. Check into what your local city’s government has to offer. Many non-profit gyms offer a discounted monthly rate upon a sit-down appointment.

While many Albertans experience this downturn in economic fortunes, remember not to skimp out on fitness. The benefits are endless, and you may just emerge from this time healthier- looking and feeling better than pre-recession.
Justine Klettke August 31, 2016

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