Saturday, July 05, 2008


We had a smallish yard at our old house and an even smaller one here. There is no grass in the back yard at all, just a little patio garden. Our front yard is nice-sized, and thanks to all the rain lately, looking pretty lush.

My husband insisted on a reel mower when we bought our old house. It cost all of $50, I think, and we have never had to buy gas. He usually is the one who cuts the grass, and it is pretty nice -- no smell, almost no noise, and the yard looks pretty good. The one downside is that it doesn't handle tall weeds as well, and if you put off mowing too long, it can get pretty tough to get through the grass.

I did our yard today and my neighbor offered to lend me his power mower (I was struggling with some longish grass). I said that this was just going to be my workout for today.

I'm picky about how it looks so I went over the lawn a couple of times to make sure it looked really good. I think it took me about an hour to do the lawn and sweep the sidewalks. I figure it's a combination cardio and resistance workout, with some core training built in. I wouldn't recommend this if you have actual acreage but if you are a city dweller it's worth a try. Saves gas, saves money, and it's better for the environment. Plus, if you feel like mowing at 5:30 on a Sunday morning, it won't bother anyone.

There are all kinds of variations: get rid of the noisy leaf blower, use a rake. In the wintertime, of course, you can ditch the snow blower and pick up a shovel.

I may have to think about taking over the yardwork. Maybe there's a way to market this: I could call it Backyard Bootcamp or something.


  1. Keep it reel, baby!

    According to Iowa State, a woman burns an average of 180 calories in a half hour using a push reel mower.

    I think you should get extra credit for hills and dips. There's one trough on the edge of my yard that I've taken to persuading my neighbor to tackle. Aside from that, as long as you don't go too long between mows, the Reel mowers are much nicer!

  2. the amish farms all have reel mowers and my husband has always wanted one. we only have paths of grass - so it would work well at our house.

    We still do not have a snow blower and he and my son shovel - but at almost 50 - that is coming to an end as we have a HUGE driveway and the son is leaving for college this year.

  3. Sounds like you burned some serious calories to me! I wouldn't be surprised if you could market it ;)

  4. Backyard Bootcamp has a ring to it. I'm a hire it done gal. My yard is to big to tackle but I do sweep the driveway and porches, for whatever good that does me. Have a great day. JC


"Count your calories, work out when you can, and try to be good to yourself. All the rest is bulls**t." -- Jillian Michaels at BlogHer '07