When I was a kid, mowing the lawn was my job. Fortunately, it never seemed like a chore to me. I liked doing it. I still like doing it. It had actually been a while since I’d done it. We have a huge lawn so we purchased a tractor when we moved into our house 9 years ago. I have no interest in using the rider, so I don’t. My husband takes care of all mowing duties on a regular basis, until recently. Our tractor broke and has been getting fixed for the past 3 weeks. Luckily our neighbor had an extra push mower that she’s letting us borrow. I have to admit, I was a little excited to take over the mowing for a few weeks. Here’s why:
- Exercise (4 hrs. guaranteed cardio for my lawn)
- Smell of freshly cut grass
- Just being outside
- Design of the lines (ok, I’m kind of a perfectionist)
- Feeling of satisfaction when the job is done
Whenever I mention that I like to mow the lawn, the feedback I most often get is, “feel free to cut my grass”. Well, it’s not the same. This is all pure self-gratification. Plus, it’s my house. It has to get done. Nobody wants to be the house in the neighborhood with the over grown, nasty looking lawn. Well, at least I don’t. My friend posted a joke on Facebook. It was a picture of a steak on the grill, the headline was “Do Vegans salivate when they smell fresh-cut grass like I do when I smell a steak on the grill?” I’m not Vegan and I don’t drool, but I much prefer the smell of fresh cut grass to BBQ. I know I’m not the only one. Yankee candle has a fresh cut grass scent, not grilled meat. I know I’m not the only one buying that candle or it wouldn’t exist.
In terms of exercise, you really work your entire body, not just your legs. It takes a lot of upper body strength to push and maneuver the mower. You can’t beat the calorie burn. You sweat like crazy. The other morning when I got up at 4:30am to go for my run, it was pouring out. I just didn’t feel like dealing with the rain. I hate my treadmill and can’t justify using it in the summer. I knew the rain was going to stop by 8:00am. I wasn’t able to go for a run that late, but I knew I was going to mow the lawn. I didn’t feel so guilty missing my run. A good 4 hour lawn mowing workout would do the trick. Even if it only took me 1 hour, it’d still be a great workout. If you’re having a hard time figuring out when to exercise, start mowing your lawn. It’s a once per week workout to get you going. If you find a specific time that works to mow, you can set the time frame for other days to fit in a walk, bike ride, run, push ups, sit ups, etc…. Before you know it, you’ll be blocking off time on a regular basis to get moving. Take advantage of the summer months to get going. If you experience all 4 seasons like I do in Upstate NY, you can carry this routine into non mowing seasons as well. Fall, raking and bagging the leaves. Winter, shoveling and using the snow blower (not for the weak. That thing is heavy). Spring, more raking and bagging. If you hire someone to do the lawn work for you, give them a vacation for 1 month and try doing it yourself. See what happens? Like all workouts, you’ll experience soreness and fatigue, but it will be gone by the end of the month. You may actually drop a few unwanted pounds and you’ll notice your energy level will rise. Nothing happens over night. The one month trial period is a good time frame. Like all exercise routines, you must ease into it. You will experience the benefits.
Do you like mowing your lawn? Do you consider mowing and other types of lawn work as exercise instead of a chore?