8 Tips to Eating Healthy on a Budget

8 Tips to Eating Healthy on a Budget

By Kim Kash–Taken from Beachbody’s Newsletter #288

Eating fresh, healthy, organic, local foods sounds great—but what if you’re on a budget? Maybe you dream of shopping at Whole Foods, but the cold, hard light of day finds you wheeling down the aisles at Trader Joes.

Woman Smelling the Tomatoes

We feel your pain. Fortunately, there are plenty of ways to eat well and actually save money in the process. Your shopping list isn’t going to include vegetarian, brown rice sushi rolls from the macrobiotic deli case, but trust us, you’ll live.

1. Don’t shop hungry!

How often do you swing by the market on your way home from work, tired and starving? While this seems like grandmotherly advice, it’s firmly rooted in current research; a new Cornell study shows that people who shop while hungry are more inclined to buy more calorically dense food.1 Keep a piece of fruit or a small Ziploc® bag full of raw nuts in your bag to guard against filling your cart with foods you’re craving now but wouldn’t buy on a full stomach.

2. Buy flash-frozen fruits, vegetables, and fish.

While any processing takes away from a food’s maximum nutritional value, flash freezing is a great way to preserve vitamins and minerals when vegetables and seafood are at their freshest. And the convenience of a bag of veggies or a filet of fish in the freezer can’t be beat. The price? For seafood, there’s no comparison: fresh is much more expensive—when you can get it at all. (If you check at your local grocer’s fish counter, you’ll find that much of what is being sold in the case as fresh has in fact been previously frozen.) Produce is trickier: frozen is sometimes, but not always, cheaper than fresh, in-season, fruits and vegetables.

3. Shop at your local farmers market.

Farmer's Market ShopperThis may surprise you, but it’s cheaper to get your veggies—organic or not—at the local farmers’ market than at the local supermarket. A 2011 study by the Northeast Organic Farming Association of Vermont is one of several around the country showing that farmers’ market prices are consistently lower than those of neighboring grocery stores.2 Who knew? So have a great time shopping with your neighbors and supporting local farmers, and be happy in the knowledge that you’re saving money too.

4. Stick to your list.

Don’t cave in to the snazzy packaging on the supermarket shelves. Make your meal plan and shopping list at home, and then stick to it. Here’s the exception: when you shop at the farmers’ market or local produce stand, sometimes a gorgeously fresh fruit or vegetable will stand out—one you hadn’t planned on. Build some flexibility into your list to account for these unanticipated treasures . . . just decide which meals you want to add them to before purchasing. A good rule of thumb is to stick absolutely to your list of pantry items, but give yourself some leeway with fresh, seasonal foods.

5. Eat lots of beans and always soak your own.

Bowl of BeansBeans are a great source of protein and fiber, and form the cornerstone of many world cuisines. And they’re dead cheap—if you buy them dried. Soaking your own beans is easy, though it does take more planning than opening a can of them. But it’s no big deal. Just decide the night before what you’re going to eat the next day. If a meal includes beans, then put them in a pot of water to soak and leave them overnight. In the morning, let them cook as you’re getting ready for the day.

6. Buy in bulk.

Costco® and other warehouse stores sell fruits and vegetables at ridiculously low prices—if you’re willing to buy, say, 15 pounds of potatoes or 8 pounds of oranges at a time. You’re in for some work at home, but at those prices, who’s complaining? Also, in many regions it is possible to pair up with another family or two and buy a portion of either a cow or a pig directly from a local farmer. In exchange, you will receive many, many neatly wrapped and labeled packages of meat. An extra freezer is necessary for this, but well worth the investment if you live in a region where such arrangements exist. Another huge benefit of this is that you know the animal was not raised on a factory feedlot. Therefore, the meat will likely be free from the steroids and antibiotics that plague grocery store bargain meat cuts.

7. Join a CSA.

Basket Full of VegetablesCommunity Supported Agriculture is another way to save money by cutting out the middleman. With a CSA, you pay a flat fee up front. On the East Coast it’s typically $400-$500—for a whole growing season of produce! Every week you get a box of whatever came out of the farmer’s field. Like buying in bulk at warehouse stores, this calls for some time and creativity in the kitchen. In late summer, we sometimes freak out trying to figure out what to do with all those perfect, ripe tomatoes. What a problem to have!

8. Cut your consumption.

Over the last few decades, restaurant portions have become gargantuan, and we somehow seem to think that a platter of food is actually a single serving. Most restaurant entrées can easily feed two or three. So when you’re out, either share a single entrée, or get half boxed for another meal. And at home, serve smaller portions on smaller plates. It won’t take long at all before you’re satisfied with sensible portions!


If you find these tips helpful and would like more, please Comment below or message me at coachannagray@gmail.com

P90x and training for Hockey…My thoughts

Anna Hockey1So I started p90x in June of 2009 in search of getting my body back in the size I was happy with. But an added benefit of p90x has been an increase in speed and stamina of my hockey game. So, I have been up an down in size and weight for the last 11 years of playing Ice Hockey. Some years are good and some years I’m sucking wind. I would say from 2006 to June 2009 I was in the sucking wind category. As my p90x transformation continued I started to hear comments from my men’s over 40 team. Like “You are flying” or “You knocked him right on his …” . I will say that this was more motivation to keep moving. So, I have been pushing along doing my two rounds of p90x anAnna Hockey2

d started INSANITY. As I progressed my strength was amazing, but I have to say that I was not tired on the bench, breathing with no effort at all. But the true test was going to be this last weekend, a Woman’s Hockey Tournament in Las Vegas. See I haven’t played in this tournament since before I adopted my wonderful little girls, so it was going to be interesting to see how my stamina faired for 3 games in two days and possibly a 4th. I came prepared with P90x Recovery Drink in hand and Shakeology shaker cups for all my teammates. And the tournament began. First game we played against a team from Chicago, a very fast and physical team. We could not match them in goals, in fact 6-0 to be exact. But I felt amazing! I skated back and forth and up and down. I was winded but my recovery on the bench was very short and I was ready to get back on the ice in no time. Downed myP90x Recovery Drink and made drinks to go around so that my team would be primed and ready to go for Game #2 that was 5 hours later. Game #2 against a team from Vancouver faired exactly the same…not to our advantage, these girls (yes they were definitely girls and not women) were strong and very physical. Not sure what happened but that fact is we lost. Again, my stamina was shocking to me. I still continued to skate the ice and really tax myself by racing and chasing down the puck where the old me would have needed an oxygen mask on the bench. Instead, I sat on the bench (or in the penalty box..oops) and

caught my breath and was ready to sprint some more. I downed my P90x Recovery Drink again and after some much needed rest the next morning at the MGM Grand Spa (well it was Las Vegas), game #3 was bound to be our saving-face game and that it was. We beat a team from San Diego 7-3 and controlled the game, this time there were cheers from my own players during certain plays like “Did Tony Teach you that?” after a wicked slap shot, or “Your p90x self better beatmy out of shape self to the Puck”, and of course the famous “X” symbol, with Hockey Gloves in the air.

So, my thoughts of how p90x can be used to increase your “Steam” in any sport is it does Amazing things. I love the way I feel flying across the ice, able to get up quickly after being knocked down and just feel plain strong. That was not my goal before starting it but it is a welcoming “side effect”.

If you are seeking help with your game or help with your stamina in any sport (I also feel the same way when I have been on the soccer field). Please ask me how I can help? I would be so glad to help get you to where you would like to be. Anna Hockey3  Anna Hockey4  Anna Hockey5   Anna Hockey6   Anna Hockey7

More P90x Success Stories | Shakeology Success Stories | Chalean Extreme Success Stories

Are you interested in seeing more P90x Success Stories?

Or maybe some Shakeology or Chalean Extreme Success Stories?

I know I love to see updated Success Stories, more people that have changed their lives like myself, this not only gives me more motivation to keep pushing myself but I just smile at how these have motivated so many others.

Beachbody created a Challenge this year called The Beachbody Challenge where not only is there a grand prize of $100,000 but there are monthly prizes for those BRINGING IT!!

So, on the brink of starting a 3rd round of P90x this Sept 25th (you can join me) I am ready to provide yet another set of before and after pictures because I plan on just Killing It!!

Check out Beachbody’s August Success Stories:





P90x2 Review Female | Week #1 | Busy Mom | Vegan Cleanse | Melissa Costello

Today marks the end of Day 7 of my P90x2 Journey. What do I feel like, I feel amazing, I feel incredibly sore, I feel empowered, and I feel like I have had a rebirth! See I started my P90x journey in June of 2009 when I returned from a trip to Cancun 30 lbs heavier then my 70lb weight loss a couple years prior. Here I was AGAIN dealing with my weight, I had lost all this weight, felt incredible, thrown into parenthood after adopting our 2 little girls and the weight was creeping back up….Fast Forward 90 days, I was back down but had way less body fat and ACTUALLY had ABS. I had never had ABS in my entire life. Thank you Tony Horton and P90x. So I became a coach because I wanted to make sure I payed it forward. I wanted to make sure I have the support and guidance so important in all Beachbody programs. Fast Forward 2 + years later…I am in the same size, lost some muscle definition and gained some body fat..all due to going through the motions for 2 years…I had plateau’d but HECK I would rather that be the case then be in the same position as before, but I had reached a point where I WANTED MORE. I have seen my friends and fellow Beachbody Coaches, just continue to improve and impress, I wanted that for me! So I made 2 decisions. 1-Start P90x2 and 2-Do a 30 day Vegan Cleanse with Melissa Costello (Tony Horton’s personal Chef) that some of my friends had done last year. I had finally reached a mental point, totally similar to that day before starting p90x 2 years ago, like there is nothing stopping me in this one!! So I started the Cleanse on Monday, had a headache due to the detoxing from Coffee, but felt in control. Started my first day of P90x2 as well. Boy day 7 reflection is I DID IT RIGHT and THERE IS NO STOPPING ME.




I had to move Yoga to Day 6 and Double up day 6 and 7 on Day 7 since I had a Hockey Game on Yoga day. You can see my REVIEW here!  If you are interested in BECOMING a coach or Want to be included in one of my Challenge Groups, please contact me:  anna@coachannagray.com

Self Confidence-What I have learned.

Before I weighed 205 pounds I was a typical high school athlete. I went to school full-time and played sports after school full-time. I felt like I could eat anything I wanted to because I was exercising. Since I grew up playing sports I never really dove into dressing up, putting on makeup, doing my hair. I would typically put on my sweatpants and sweatshirt, put my hair in a ponytail, and head out the door. I typically hung out with the boys and considered myself one of the boys. They accepted me because I could compete with them, which I felt comfortable with. So I went through my whole high school life as a tomboy and embraced that title.

In college during my freshman year I continued to play sports. I did the typical addition of the freshman 15. I ate what college kids ate, that included Top Ramen, peanut butter and pickle sandwiches, and my free Mexican food meal because I worked at a restaurant. I also continued to wear my sweatpants and my sweatshirt and carry out the day.



This pattern consistently continued until just recently. I lost 70 lbs on Weight Watchers eight years ago, and felt fantastic. The one thing that didn’t change was my self-confidence in how I presented myself. I continued to wear comfortable clothes and be comfortable because I didn’t know what self-confidence meant. I think that gaining the 35 pounds back that I did had self-confidence written all over it, in a bad way. I lost the weight but didn’t work on myself.

Fast forward five years, I found this support I needed to complete me. P90X gave me my body back, Teambeachbody gave me my confidence. The support I found from a Beachbody coach and the online Teambeachbody community I credit 100% to my self-confidence at the age of 38. I now feel like I should have felt when I lost the 70 pounds. I finally do my hair, do my makeup, and feel incredible in my clothes. After being married for 12 years, my husband can say that I am no longer married to a tomboy. I wish I would’ve learned self-confidence many years earlier but I am glad every day for the people that I have met in the Teambeachbody community. My goal is as a Beachbody coach to help others gain that self-confidence that I have. Because, we can work on our weight loss and our fitness, but if we don’t work on our self then we have failed ourselves.

Coach Anna GrayBeachbody products we know work. You see many, many success stories with them. But Beachbody is not only for those that have done Beachbody workouts or have enjoyed Beachbody supplements, including Shakeology. Teambeachbody is about community andsupport. Being a coach has kept me accountable to myself and accountable to others so that I don’t see others fall into the same rut I did. For those who have traveled the same roller coaster I had I highly recommend becoming a Beachbodycoach and gaining control of your destiny. You not only keep yourself accountable to your fitness and health goals, but you become part of somebody else’s life and see them successful. Being a Beachbody coach enables you to dream big. It enables you to envision your life like you never have before. I believe wholeheartedly in this business because I have been given the tools to help millions. If I can dream big, so can my children. Knowing that my children see this at age 7 and 4 tells me that they can be even more successful, even earlier in their lives.