This past spring I bought a brand new lawnmower! I know that may not sound very exciting, but let me tell you, it’s made all the difference in juggling the chronic pain in my hands from rheumatoid arthritis and summer yard work. If you’re also managing high levels of fatigue and joint pain, listen up! These mowing tips are for you!
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Making Mower Easier With Chronic Health Issues
First of all, I’m not ashamed to share that I have hired help to keep up on my lawn mowing in the past. It was worth it to keep RA flares to a minimum, seasonal allergies quiet and rashes on my skin from the cut grass (thanks to eczema) to a minimum in the summertime.
However, if you’re all in and ready to enjoy the fresh air and sunshine in your yard, here’s what I’ve been doing to keep my lawn looking awesome (most of the time!) without putting too much strain on my body.
1. Choose a lightweight mower. When I upgraded this spring, I selected an electric mower from EGO. I like the green aspect for the environment, but also the fact that it’s much lighter to push around than a full gas-powered mower. Plus, it doesn’t have any fuel-burning fumes to make me feel nauseous and I don’t have to make trips to the gas station — using up more of my finite energy.
2. Use the self-propel feature. If your mower has it, press that dang button! My mower has multiple settings for the self-propel feature so I can simply guide the machine when I’m going uphill or when I feel my energy levels diminishing quickly. I never used to like this option because I always felt like the mower was running away from me, so now I use one of the lower settings and it’s much more enjoyable.
3. Mow in short spurts. I’ve found that I can manage about 45 minutes of yard work every other day without throwing myself into an autoimmune flare complete with immobile hands, swollen feet and brain fog. Everybody is different, so find what works for you. This means I might mow the backyard one evening, the front yard in two more days, and then do the weed trimming on the weekend.
Do you have any mowing tips to keep your health in check? I’m all ears! Feel free to comment below to inspire me and other readers of the Cupcakes and Yoga Pants blog.
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