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Four Things You Can Fix Without Calling A Repairman

Four Things You Can Fix Without Calling A Repairman

Part of life is that things deteriorate and eventually break. This is true for just about anything (although my Toyotas sometime make me believe this may not be true).

Because most people’s homes have a large number of appliances and systems working together to make everything run smoothly, it may often feel like there is always something new breaking in your home. That is probably true. This can get incredibly expensive if a repairman or specialist is required every single time something goes wrong. You will have to pay for the time they drive to your house, parts, labor, and likely a few other expenses. It can be extremely frustrating when they fix the problem in ten seconds, yet leave you with a bill in the neighborhood of $100. Here are four things that, should they break in your home, you can probably handle yourself.

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Toilet

Sure, a toilet might sound like the most complicated thing on planet Earth, but once you take off the top and see how it works you come to realize that toilets are a great, but simple invention. Most of the parts that keep a toilet operating are standardized and cost just a few bucks to replace. A common issue is leaking toilets, and they are one of the easiest to repair. There is something called a flapper which essentially stops water from going into the toilet after a certain point. If the flapper is old and deteriorated then it will have issues.

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A flapper costs about $2 to purchase at Home Depot and takes about thirty seconds to install. A plumber may charge you upwards of $60 for that same repair. A flapper is just one example. There are a few things that can go wrong with a toilet, but most of them can be solved by watching a simple YouTube video.

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Garbage disposal

Garbage disposals may sound big and scary, but they are frequently quite easy to repair. All they are is a motor that spins- fairly simple. There are a few issues that can arise with them, but oftentimes it is just a simple button that needs to be pushed, or some gunk that needs to be cleaned out by hand. You can watch a quick guide for garbage disposal repair here.

Hot water heater

Hot water heaters can be dangerous and should be treated as such. However, they also have a common issue that many people are unaware of. They have a pilot light that is a continual flame for the water heater to draw off of. If the pilot light goes out, the water heater will not work. Sure, you could call a specialist, but you could also light the pilot light yourself with a lighter. Some pilot lights today will even light with a simple turn of a knob. Here is a pretty good video of this.

Electricity out

Electricity can be extremely daunting to deal with. Fortunately there is a common issue that most houses go through at least a few times. Their breakers flip. If a breaker flips, it is usually due to a circuit (group of outlets) having too many items plugged in. The electricity will go out in part of your house leaving you thinking you may have to rewire your house. Oftentimes you can open a box in your house and simply flip the breaker back on. You will want to be careful to unplug a few things before doing so to make sure it doesn’t flip right back off, but it is often that easy. Don’t pay an electrician to come push one button in your home.

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Spencer Mecham

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Last Updated on September 18, 2020

7 Simple Rules to Live by to Get in Shape in Two Weeks

7 Simple Rules to Live by to Get in Shape in Two Weeks

Learning how to get in shape and set goals is important if you’re looking to live a healthier lifestyle and get closer to your goal weight. While this does require changes to your daily routine, you’ll find that you are able to look and feel better in only two weeks.

Over the years, I’ve learned a lot about what it takes to get in shape. Although anyone can cover the basics (eat right and exercise), there are some things that I could only learn through trial and error. Let’s cover some of the most important points for how to get in shape in two weeks.

1. Exercise Daily

It is far easier to make exercise a habit if it is a daily one. If you aren’t exercising at all, I recommend starting by exercising a half hour every day. When you only exercise a couple times per week, it is much easier to turn one day off into three days off, a week off, or a month off.

If you are already used to exercising, switching to three or four times a week to fit your schedule may be preferable, but it is a lot harder to maintain a workout program you don’t do every day.

Be careful to not repeat the same exercise routine each day. If you do an intense ab workout one day, try switching it up to general cardio the next. You can also squeeze in a day of light walking to break up the intensity.

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If you’re a morning person, check out these morning exercises that will start your day off right.

2. Duration Doesn’t Substitute for Intensity

Once you get into the habit of regular exercise, where do you go if you still aren’t reaching your goals? Most people will solve the problem by exercising for longer periods of time, turning forty-minute workouts into two hour stretches. Not only does this drain your time, but it doesn’t work particularly well.

One study shows that “exercising for a whole hour instead of a half does not provide any additional loss in either body weight or fat”[1].

This is great news for both your schedule and your levels of motivation. You’ll likely find it much easier to exercise for 30 minutes a day instead of an hour. In those 30 minutes, do your best to up the intensity to your appropriate edge to get the most out of the time.

3. Acknowledge Your Limits

Many people get frustrated when they plateau in their weight loss or muscle gaining goals as they’re learning how to get in shape. Everyone has an equilibrium and genetic set point where their body wants to remain. This doesn’t mean that you can’t achieve your fitness goals, but don’t be too hard on yourself if you are struggling to lose weight or put on muscle.

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Acknowledging a set point doesn’t mean giving up, but it does mean realizing the obstacles you face.

Expect to hit a plateau in your own fitness results[2]. When you expect a plateau, you can manage around it so you can continue your progress at a more realistic rate. When expectations meet reality, you can avoid dietary crashes.

4. Eat Healthy, Not Just Food That Looks Healthy

Know what you eat. Don’t fuss over minutia like whether you’re getting enough Omega 3’s or tryptophan, but be aware of the big things. Look at the foods you eat regularly and figure out whether they are healthy or not. Don’t get fooled by the deceptively healthy snacks just pretending to be good for you.

The basic nutritional advice includes:

  • Eat unprocessed foods
  • Eat more veggies
  • Use meat as a side dish, not a main course
  • Eat whole grains, not refined grains[3]

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Eat whole grains when you want to learn how to get in shape.

    5. Watch Out for Travel

    Don’t let a four-day holiday interfere with your attempts when you’re learning how to get in shape. I don’t mean that you need to follow your diet and exercise plan without any excursion, but when you are in the first few weeks, still forming habits, be careful that a week long break doesn’t terminate your progress.

    This is also true of schedule changes that leave you suddenly busy or make it difficult to exercise. Have a backup plan so you can be consistent, at least for the first month when you are forming habits.

    If travel is on your schedule and can’t be avoided, make an exercise plan before you go[4], and make sure to pack exercise clothes and an exercise mat as motivation to keep you on track.

    6. Start Slow

    Ever start an exercise plan by running ten miles and then puking your guts out? Maybe you aren’t that extreme, but burnout is common early on when learning how to get in shape. You have a lifetime to be healthy, so don’t try to go from couch potato to athletic superstar in a week.

    If you are starting a running regime, for example, run less than you can to start. Starting strength training? Work with less weight than you could theoretically lift. Increasing intensity and pushing yourself can come later when your body becomes comfortable with regular exercise.

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    7. Be Careful When Choosing a Workout Partner

    Should you have a workout partner? That depends. Workout partners can help you stay motivated and make exercising more fun. But they can also stop you from reaching your goals.

    My suggestion would be to have a workout partner, but when you start to plateau (either in physical ability, weight loss/gain, or overall health) and you haven’t reached your goals, consider mixing things up a bit.

    If you plateau, you may need to make changes to continue improving. In this case it’s important to talk to your workout partner about the changes you want to make, and if they don’t seem motivated to continue, offer a thirty day break where you both try different activities.

    I notice that guys working out together tend to match strength after a brief adjustment phase. Even if both are trying to improve, something seems to stall improvement once they reach a certain point. I found that I was able to lift as much as 30-50% more after taking a short break from my regular workout partner.

    Final Thoughts

    Learning how to get in shape in as little as two weeks sounds daunting, but if you’re motivated and have the time and energy to devote to it, it’s certainly possible.

    Find an exercise routine that works for you, eat healthy, drink lots of water, and watch as the transformation begins.

    More Tips on Getting in Shape

    Featured photo credit: Alexander Redl via unsplash.com

    Reference

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