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7 Critical Essentials You Must Have in Your Car

7 Critical Essentials You Must Have in Your Car

You may not even realize how much time you spend in your car—whether that be commuting, travelling, dropping off, picking up, coming or going. Most car owners retain their car for over 5-7 years, almost as long as people live in the same place. What this means is that apart from your home and workplace, the car is effectively your third home, so it should reflect some “homeliness” along with being an expression of your personality! Do fluffy dice or swinging palm tree odors float your boat?

How much of an effort do you make to make life fun and comfortable in your third home? It doesn’t matter what car you drive or how much of a technophobe you may be, there are staple items that everyone must consider having in their car.

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Here are some critical essentials to consider.

1. Cleanliness

Cleanliness lies in the “eyes of the beholder.” Although, if a polite passenger says, “I don’t mind the mess,” i.e. stepping on loose papers, coffee cups, crusts and crunchy bits of an unknown item, they are being exactly that—”polite.” Tidy up and make it respectable for yourself and others.  It feels nice when your car looks and smells clean, sort of like jumping into clean bed sheets at night.

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2. Music of Choice

The radio no longer monopolizes our ears. Radical shifts have taken place! In fact, it’s no fun being screamed at by loud irrelevant, unanticipated advertising messages, annoying jingles and radio ad voices. It makes me angry and irritable. When buying a car, ask for a discount for no radio installed and see what they say! Pay for Spotify ad free and get a Bluetooth connection. Bluetooth also allows you to speak on the phone safely. Control the airwaves like you’ve never controlled them before. You’re now a DJ. Music by choice makes me feel great. Your CDs and old CD case can now accompany your old cassettes in your next garage sale. Embrace the digital age—even if you’re 80.

3. Coins

I hate when people don’t have coins ready for parking and need to break a note to get spare change from 7-11. Have a top up point, so you never go dry on coins when you can’t use cards to pay for parking. Especially when you’re in a rush, you’ve got to have coins ready.

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4. Mints

Smelling good increases confidence. No one wants to worry about bad breath. Most passengers always go for the mints—or even better, a stash of lollipops, when managed carefully, are a nice to have sugar hit. It’s nice when your Uber driver offers you water and mints, so pretend you’re the Uber driver when you have passengers.

5. Survival Kit

I love spontaneity. Let’s go to the park, the beach or a picnic on a whim! Rain, hail or shine, the survival kit comes in handy for all occasions. Think of including a towel, umbrella, sunscreen, water bottle, baby wipes, rag, spare socks, a pen or two that works, sweater and of course a bottle opener. A yoga mat is also a great picnic mat! Add as you like to your survival kit

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6. Hobby items

Bring hobby items for you and your kids. I’m a keen golfer, so I always carry a glove and some clubs for myself and my son for a spontaneous stop at the driving range, along with a soccer ball and cricket bat and ball. A runner might always have a pair of runners and gear. Whatever your favorite hobby, always carry something of interest

7. Phone charger

Charge your phone as you drive. Plug in when you hop in and never run dry.

Now you’re all ready to roll in comfort and peace. If only all car salesmen would read this post and ask you next time you’re ready to purchase, “Now Sir/Ma’am, are there any critical essentials you would like in your car before you drive away?” Don’t be surprised if it happens at the time of your next purchase.

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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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