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A 1040 form and a three $100 billsWill you be getting a tax return this year? If so, congratulations! But hmm…what to do with that extra cash?

According to Capital One’s annual Taxes and Savings Survey, 52 percent of Americans plan on receiving a tax return this year. The majority of these say they’ll use the money to:

  • Pay down debt or pay off bills: 58%
  • Spend on everyday expenses and necessities: 15%
  • Book a vacation: 7%
  • Make a major purchase, such as a car: 7%
  • Buy new clothes: 1%
  • Purchase electronics: 1%

Now, we’re not saying not to do any of the above things (especially paying off debts and/or booking a  vacation). But, why not shave off a little of that new-found wealth and invest in your health? Here are some fun ways to make your dollars help you look, and feel, like a million dollars:

Buy Some New Cookware

An American Dietetic Association study concluded that people who eat out regularly consume nearly 300 more calories a day than people who eat at home. This can result in gaining nearly two pounds a month! Cooking your own food helps you gain better control of your health by limiting portions and reducing salt and fats. And…limiting those restaurant outings can help save you extra money.

Buy Some Fitness Equipment

You’ve probably been saying for years that you want to buy a new treadmill, weights, even a new bike. Or get a new gym membership. So why not now? Regular exercise is the key to a hotter, healthier body. So what are you waiting for?

Buy A New Bed

Sleep is essential for total-body health. Period. Why? Sleep is a necessary biological process that restores, repairs, and rejuvenates the body. But study after study has shown that less than one-third of Americans get more than half of that every night. If you find yourself struggling to be comfortable in your bed, then this is a sign that you may need another one. In fact, the Better Sleep Council recommends that you change your mattress every five to seven years.

Buy New Gym Clothes & Shoes

Are your shoes worn out and are there holes in your workout shorts? Then…it may be time to retire them. Splurging on new fitness clothes may help motivate you to work out more often. Also, as a general rule, most running and walking shoes last up to 500 miles and need to be replaced after that. Even better – buy two new pairs of fitness shoes, then alternate wearing them so that both pairs last longer.

Buy A Massage

A massage can actually save your life! Really! Experts say that in addition to providing some much-needed stress relief, which is an essential health benefit all by itself, massages can also help strengthen your immune system, which can translate to fewer colds, flus and other types of health conditions and diseases.

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