Frugal Idea #24

Two balls in a sock. Amazing concept.

Two balls in a sock is a trick I learned years ago. I was experiencing a lot of pain and discomfort in my back area and my neck. A coworker asked if I had ever tried laying down on the floor and roll on two tennis balls in a tube sock. I giggled at the thought of it, but I went home that night and tried it. As the balls rolled over knots and I screamed in pain and excitement for the discovery, I became obsessed with it. Now, I roll while I watch TV, I roll at work, and I roll standing up against the wall.

I am a huge believer in taking care of your body. Not only does eating well and working out provide healthy results for your body, I also believe spiritual and mental health elevates your body’s well being. Any activity to help calm the mind is beneficial. I started enjoying spas and massages in my mid 20s. They really did help me relax and unwind from the stressful work week. As I swiped credit cards for a second and sometimes third time within the month for spa services, I started to notice how expensive this habit had really become. When I decided to start living a more minimal lifestyle and cut out excessive spending, I did not want to ignore my body’s aches & pains. I found items and ways to invest in to deter from overspending at the fancy spas. Here is a list of what I have done and currently do to save money:

  • Two balls in a sock – Simple. Choose two balls of choice and put in a sock. I have always chosen tennis balls, but I have read that golf balls can work as well. You can also roll your foot over a ball to massage your feet. For more pressure, try standing on it.

    Two tennis balls in a sock

    Two tennis balls in a sock

  • Wait for a deal on Groupon or Living Social – I typically delete these emails to avoid spending, but as soon as I see a great deal for a spa service, I buy it immediately. I have been able to find deals for a massage at Project Zen Massage and Bodywork (projectzenmassage.com) and a facial at The I Spa (interconspasf.com) which is located in The Intercontinental Hotel. Prices can typically run over $100, but I have been able to get deals as low as $40 for a one hour massage!  Download App or visit http://www.groupon.com and/or www.livingsocial.com
  • Foam & Rumble Rollers – When the back is really in pain, I take advantage of the foam rollers at 24 Hour Fitness. I love the black ones as they are a lot firmer. I noticed that my back tends to crack which has helped me feel aligned again. The foam rollers have been great for soothing out muscles, but the Rumble Roller really gets in the knots. Approved!

    Rumble Roller!

    Rumble Roller!

  • Membership at Massage Envy – If you can commit to a monthly charge, this might be good for you. The prices for membership typically lowers the overall costs. However, you do need to commit for a year. The positive aspects of this is that you force yourself to get a massage which helps relieves aches and lowers stress so that you can work harder to make more money. Warning: The San Francisco location charges $10 more than local Massage Envy locations due to market rate/location. www.massageenvy.com
  • Kabuki Springs – Located in Japantown San Francisco, this spa is amazing! For $25.00 a visit, you can stay all day and utilize the hot springs, cold plunge, dry and wet saunas, steam rooms, and salt scrubs. They also bring tea, flavored waters, and snacks throughout the day. They provide gender specific days so you can feel comfortable going in your birthday suit for ultimate relaxation. You can also earn points for a free visit. www.kabukisprings.com
  • Theracane – I watched a few YouTube videos on this product and it has really helped dig in for some self afflicted deep tissue work. When you need quick pressure points to hit the knot, this is a pretty good product.

    Theracane

    Theracane

  • Exchange massages with friends or like minded people – I wanted to explore the space of massage sharing and it is not bad at all. I have a friend who told me that during college, she had a massage friend. This was a friendly trade of massage. Not a bad idea. So I’ve tried it and i sure beats spending money. All you need is time.

Frugal Idea #23

Time heals all wounds. When it comes to “Heeling”, all you need is time….or 1 week max.

My work dress shoes were in need of some desperate TLC (Tender Loving Care). It all started with just a need for a simple shine. Every day at my desk, I would look down and be ashamed of my shoes.  I had participated in Reserve Officers’ Training Corps (ROTC) during High School where I learned to shine and polish my black shoes (always topped with a little extra spit of course). As an adult, I have learned that 1) I do not have a lot of time to shine the shoes and 2) I really hate shining shoes. For years, I had a bad habit of buying instant shoe shine products for a quick rub and once the shoes looked old and tired, I donated them and bought a new pair of shoes. Working in a business professional environment, I overheard the ladies of the office discuss reheeling their high heels. From my understanding, it was poor form to have the metal spike show and the metal clicks on the floor to the water cooler was not a good sound. For an affordable price, the advice of the office was to take your worn out shoes to Boat Feet Shoe Repair, which happened to be around the corner. I decided to take 4 pairs of shoes for a quick shine and polish and I quickly learned a thing or two about shoes.

As the shoe repair employee inspected each shoe, he showed me the bottoms. The bottoms were uneven and worn down. He explained that I have been walking unevenly and therefore the shoes may be affecting my back. That made complete sense! I had complained of back issues for a long time.  Someone once told me to never go cheap on shoes. Shoes take care of your feet and you are on your feet most of the day. Why had I only focused on the top of shoes and never the bottoms? The employee recommended I resole and reheel all pairs. He assured me they would all be fixed within the week and reminded me that it was cash only. The resole and reheel both came with complimentary shines. At the end of the week, I was excited to pick up my shoes and they looked great. Not only did they look clean, but the bottoms looked fresh as if I had just purchased them from the store. All completed within a fraction of the price of purchasing new shoes.

Confession: I now look at all the men’s shoes during the meetings. I have noticed who is in need of a good reheel. I secretly try to bring this topic up at the water cooler. Just a little tip as we sip our water and chat on our feet.

Shoe Repair Shops in San Francisco (Union Square and Tenderloin) with 4 stars or more on Yelp:

  • Jack’s Shoe Repair – 388 Market St.
  • Shoe Craft – 441 Stockton St.
  • Francisco’s Shoe Shop – 704 Geary St.

Personal Fave: Boat Feet Repair Shop – 1212 W Hillsdale Blvd, San Mateo, CA 94403. (650) 349-0883

Instead of buying new shoes, resole and reheel for a fraction of the price!

Instead of buying new shoes, resole and reheel for a fraction of the price!

 

Frugal Idea #22

Surround yourself with affirmations and you will believe!

I started a new habit. As I fold clothes, iron clothes, clean the apartment, or conduct any similar activity where I enjoy having background noise play, I now have the habit of plugging my tablet into speakers and at a high volume, I would play podcasts and/or YouTube videos related to my financial goals. The more I did this, the more keywords I enjoyed exploring. The keywords I have discovered so far include wealth, multiple streams of income, budget, frugal, and the list goes on and on. I have also have listened to affirmations during my commute to work. The morning radio stations no longer fulfilled me. Sure, I would catch up on celebrity gossip, but I wanted to spend more time exploring new ideas that would directly benefit my financial goals.

I also started reading a variety of websites, started following Twitter accounts, & subscribed to blogs that had a topic of interest related to my goals. I was watching Shark Tank and I remembered hearing a contestant state that who you surround yourself with is who you become (or something similar to that).

Here is a YouTube video I recently played. I hope these affirmations move you!  Affirmation of the day: “I am worthy of great success”

Frugal Idea #21

I once waved to the tourists on the double decker bus. 

It never fails to see a big, red double decker tour bus turn left onto Post Street from Van Ness on my way to 24 Hour Fitness on Post & Van Ness. I enjoy seeing their stares at the locals walking below them and at the beautiful historic buildings that I have fallen in love with – they are truly classic San Francisco. I must confess that I have toured San Francisco on that bus at least 8 times. I was lucky, my friend worked for Open Top Sightseeing (now Big Bus Tours), so I was able to get complimentary tickets every now and then. This was perfect for friends and family who were visiting. Looking back, I am truly thankful that my friend provided complimentary tickets when he could. It did come with a price. The price was to write a review on TripAdvisor.com. Easy! Done and Done. If the opportunity to receive complimentary tickets never happened, the price point would have hurt quite a bit (pricing found online). 

Now that I have exhausted my touring enthusiasm (there is no way I am riding on that bus any time soon), I searched for affordable touring options. I discovered an amazing (and FREE) option to tour San Franciscowalking tours! You can choose the day & time that works for you and choose the neighborhood of your choice. Since I am trying to lose some weight, the walking was perfect since there is no doubt you will have to overcome one of San Francisco’s 49 hills!  

(See all 49 hills at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_hills_in_San_Francisco). 

I decided to choose the Castro walking tour first. The tour is hosted by a volunteer and he was very knowledgeable. It was a sunny day and our tour group included folks from Canada, New York, and Germany. I discovered a memorial I had never visited, history on the beautiful Victorian homes, and was educated more on the life of the amazing Harvey Milk.

Business Tip: come prepared with business cards. You never know who might need your services!

The next tour I am planning will be the Pacific Heights Mansions. Two reasons: Pacific Heights is definitely all hills and will be great for the thighs and a great opportunity to recite some affirmations when no one is looking; “I believe I can afford a mansion one day.” Why not?

Visit San Francisco’s Walking Tours page here: http://www.sfcityguides.org/

To my readers in New York and Chicago, I just did some searches. Here you go: http://walkingtoursmanhattan.com/ & http://www.walkchicagotours.com/

You can easily search walking tours in your city. I just typed in “Walking Tours San Francisco” into Google.  Now step up and put a step on it. Let’s Walk!

Walking can sometimes get you to a location faster than driving!

Walking can sometimes get you to a location faster than driving in San Francisco!