Get paid to lose weight — no, really

Apps add accountability, opportunity to earn cash for reaching fitness goals

With the new year comes the renewed promises to eat healthy and lose weight and save money. What if you could combine them all and be very successful?

That's right -- you can actually get paid to lose weight.

Aris Rogers is an expert with ThePennyHoarder.com, and said you can make some extra cash and drop some pounds using websites like HealthyWage.com.

It's pretty simple. You enter your goal -- the weight you want to lose -- how quickly and how much you're willing to wager that you'll do it.

"If you keep up with that, you'll actually be able to win that prize amount," said Rogers. "However, if you don't, the money that you bet toward yourself will go to some of the other winners."

Rogers said if you want more of a community approach with a supportive atmosphere, you can try DietBet.com. You can join groups or be matched up with people with similar weight loss goals.

"For instance, there's a Kickstarter plan where you can lose 4 percent of your body weight in 28 days," said Rogers. "There's a Transformer plan where you can lose 10 percent of your body weight in six months. And then there's a Maintainer where you just simply want to maintain the weight that you've lost over 12 months."

You can bet monthly or bet up front, and if you meet your goals, the pot gets split among everyone in your group who met their goals. There are fitness professionals and social media personalities who host bets with encouragement and support, too. So sometimes, for example, you can find someone you follow on Instagram hosting a DietBet and you can get hooked up with their bet.

The other good part is, don't think you can just say you're losing the weight for cash, either.

"They do have a verification team, so you will need to send in the picture of the scale, and whatnot," said Rogers.

There are specific things they'll ask for to show you're making the progress you say you are, because the primary goal is to lose weight and live a healthier lifestyle -- the cash is just a bonus.

If you already make healthy choices, you can get paid for those, too, with an app called Pact.

"You'll either choose a goal of do you want to eat a certain amount of vegetables or a specific type of diet plan or consistency in working out," said Rogers.

The app asks for verification with things like pictures of the veggies you're eating or a GPS check-in showing you're at a gym, for example. You tell the app how much you're willing to pay up from your linked account if you don't meet your goals.

"If you don't keep up with that, then it deducts," said Rogers. "You can either choose $5 up to $50 depending on how much accountability you want."

So sleeping in instead of hitting the gym will cost you, but you can get anywhere from a few cents to a few dollars for every workout you do or every serving of vegetables you eat.

All three apps are free to download for both iPhone and Androids.

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