Category Archives: Fitness

The way to go to the gym is not to have to go to one at all

Step outside and smell the roses and proceed to run, jump, skip, bend, jiggle, pull, push, swim, cycle, climb, finally… slow down and take in the sights mother nature has on offer. Infinitely more fun, practical and cheaper then going to an indoor gym. Exercise your soul, not your ego. Better yet go build yourself a house, a tiny one at that and you’ll discover muscles you never thought you had.

Save Time. Save Money. Save Space

 

The simplest way to store your bikes off the ground

If you ride a push bike frequently, you’d probably have more than one bike. If you keep your bike indoors, you’d also know they take up a lot of space. One way to save on this space they take up is to keep them off the ground. There are a number of hooks, handles and mounting hardware you can buy that will allow you to do this. A google search will show you just how many variations there are.

If you are thinking of storing your bike off the ground, but aren’t keen to spend the dollars to buy a mount or hook and then take the time to install one. I have an alternative solution for you that I simply haven’t seen elsewhere do on the web. It’s very simple; however it does require that you have a suitable ledge above head height. I present to you the frugalman-makeshift-do-without version of hanging your bike –

IMG_20140529_190848 IMG_20140529_190900 IMG_20140529_190914 IMG_20140529_190920

The great thing about this method is how easy it is to put on and take off. Simply rotate your seat 90 degrees and hang… voila!

You’ll have to excuse the mess in the storage room… still a work in progress…

How to carry your bike on your car frugal style!

Ok first up, this is for folks who already have roof racks.

Now, there are basically 4 ways to carry your bike on your car, you can put it on a –

  1. Tow bar mounted rear bike carrier;
  2. Boot mounted clip on/strap on rear bike carrier;
  3. Roof mounted bike carrier; or
  4. If you have a hatch or wagon, take the front wheel off and shove it in the rear

The problem I had with the above was –

  1. I didn’t have a tow bar and did not want to pay $1000 for one just to carry my bike;
  2. Was not prepared to pay $100 for a rear strap-on/clip-on rear bike carrier in order to test whether or not they were sturdy and strong enough for my liking.
  3. I actually bought a roof mounted bike carrier thinking they would be easy to put on, but I found it extremely difficult to first of all install the bloody thing and second of all it was a strain to put the bike on it because I was constantly trying to balance the bike while clumsily trying to attach the arm to it for stability.
  4. There’s actually no problem with this method, it’s my go to method all the time. It’s very easy these days if you have front wheels that come off easily to shove it in the back of your hatch if you have space. I use to own a 3 door Daihatsu Charade hatchback, it was tiny, but I could still fit a bike in the back no problems (rear seats folded down of course). The problem arises when you need to fit two bikes, or you are not able to fold the rear seat down because you have friends to pick up in the back.

What to do?…

Well to tell you the truth, the solution only came to me while I was servicing my bike. When I service my bike, I lay it upside down where the seat and handle bars thus become the 3 points of ground contact to keep the bike steady, and as I stared at it, it slowly but surely became apparent to me that I could tie it onto my roof racks in the same position without the need for any special mounts.

I don’t think I’ve ever seen it tied on like this before and I was sure that as soon as I tried to I would encounter the reason why it couldn’t be done like this, so I gave it a shot.

I lifted my bike in the upside down position and proceeded to plonk it on top of my roof racks. I laid the seat on one of the rails and the handle bars on the other rail. There was a bit of adjusting to get both rails at the right distance apart, but once I got that right the bike was now able sit there by itself – that’s actually the easy part. Without a dedicated mount with clamps/straps/ratchets you need to rely on something else to tie it down. That something else was obviously going to be rope, because that’s all I had. Unfortunately, tying things down with rope is actually not that easy. I was able to tie down the rear section of the bike down with a simple truckies knot, but the front of the bike where the handle bars sat required a bit more forethought. After a bit of research I came to the conclusion that lashing the handlebars to the rails was going to be the most secure.

I found this neat technique for lashing things together called zigzag turns on this site – http://www.asiteaboutnothing.net/cr_most-useful-knots.html#zigzag-turns

This type of lashing with zig zag turns essentially has a ratcheting effect. The more zig zags turns the tighter the lashing.

Once you have it all tied down, it looks something like this below –

God I love rope… one of the most useful things invented by us humans…

As I rode around town with the bike strapped on, every single cyclist I drove past gave me the same look, as in “hmmm interesting way of tying on a bike” look…

 

Pull up bars that don’t fail or take up much space.

There are quite a number of doorway pull up bars available on the market these days –

Another popular design is the P90X type –

Never doubted they could work… but there is another option, the frugalman version –

If you have a couple of spare clamps hanging around, all you gotta do is clamp them as shown in the pictures as hand holds and voila! Pull up bars that are tough as nuts and can be put up in a flash. Hang some rope down and you can fashion yourself some Olympic rings! I’ve simply used some offcuts of timber but you can make them as pretty as you like. Make sure you use some timber where you clamp onto the wall to help protect it.

***Warning – now admittedly my version of the pull up bar is really only useful if your wall is constructed out of masonry, anything less and the clamps will most likely crush whatever it is clamping onto, especially plasterboard over timber framed walls, this is because the clamps can exert and amazing amount of force. This can be a good thing though, for one it will hold up your body weight and more, I’ve piggybacked my girlfriend and hung onto just one clamp and was able to hold without any problems***

Watch out for future posts, as I will be showing you how to create the same fail safe pull up bars for walls that are not masonry and vulnerable to crushing by the clamps.