Best Exercise Ever

   First off, I love snow. I know there are mixed feelings towards winter, but I am a huge fan. Give me snow over rain any day. The crystalline structure and the fundamental chemistry of life come together to gives us a magical experience. Who among us doesn't feel a bit of childlike glee for the first snow of the year.
   This post is not about me being a veteran snowboarder, or the beautiful alpine setting where I live. My heart swells when I awake to see heavy, wet snow covering my driveway. Yes! I love shoveling snow. I believe it is one of the best all around exercises that also accomplishes a task. There is a starting point and a finish line. Hell, it even kills people, so you know it is quality exercise. With proper form and pace, you can get a great workout and do a job that people pay others to do.

Snow Shovel Pathway
   Paying for someone to plow your drive or mow your yard never made much sense to me. Especially, when that same homeowner probably owns a gym membership. Like I said before, I enjoy landscaping, hard labor and being tired after a solid days work. The point of writing all this down is to hopefully change the attitude of at least one person out there.
   With that said. I would like to mention my favorite shovel is a Suncast SC2700. I currently own three of these shovels. This shovel is superior because it is a combo pusher and shovel. The scoop is deep enough to hold a heavy throw and make a clean pass on a two car wide driveway.
   It would only be fair to mention that I have replaced the steel wear strip on two of these shovels. I actually contacted Suncast a couple years ago to see about replacement parts, but the gave me some malarkey about not being able to match the factory rivet spacing because the parts are assembled hot.
   Whatever, you know that did not sit well with me. I made my own template and I have used it multiple times to make new wear strips. And you know what, the rivets line up every time. This is a great $3.00 solution for a $20.00 shovel. It is important to replace the strip before it breaks, which greatly weakens the plastic scoop. This mod will last much longer than the factory strip.
   These shovels are widely available for less than $10.00 in the late winter, clearance sections. I still prefer to get every bit of life out of the shovel before sending it to a landfill.

Shovel Wear Strip Repair
Sweet Modified SC2700
    I have  a couple other tips and tricks to reach the goal of an enviable clean driveway. Consistency is the key. I will shovel 1" of snow just to keep tire tracks from packing down the snow. A clean driveway is the easiest to shovel. A properly sealed blacktop will also aid in the snow releasing effortlessly. On days where the snow sticks to the scoop, I will spray the shovel with a thin coat of cooking spray.   So get a good shovel, develop proper technique and enjoy being outside while your neighbors are holed up waiting for spring.

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