This weekend I had a true test of my simple baking soda, arrowroot powder, coconut oil, and tea tree oil homemade deodorant.
Don and I went for a bum run. What’s the bum run? Well, it’s not really a run, although it can be. This simple urban exercise course came to us via the Coast Guard. They do run it. But let me back up and explain.
We have a civic center downtown which has three levels. There are stairs on the outside of the building leading up to the second floor and of course sidewalks all around. We walk around the building, mostly on the second floor. BUT, at each staircase we go down, and then back up. At the top of each staircase we do push-ups – at an angle against the stairs. I do 5, Don doesn’t between 10-15. (When we started this routine I could only do 2 or 3.) With 6 sets of staircases, that’s 120 push-ups for me and a mind-boggling amount for Don. There are 3 additional mini-staircases that we don’t do push-ups at as well. We also run a sprint on one long stretch, which might be about 75 yards, we aren’t really sure. It’s half the length of the building.
There are many ways to vary this. You can run the stairs, which we’ve done before. You can run instead of walk the entire course. You can add in sit-ups at the stairs, which is what the Coasties do when they do it for PT. You can also do the stairs 2 at a time, which is what we often do. Boy is that hard. You have to go slow (definitely no running) but it’s great for taxing your legs and training your balance.
So for us, what we usually do is warm up on the first lap by taking the stairs single-stair, and running the sprint a little slower than a full-out sprint. The second and third laps we take the stairs two at a time and run the sprint full-out like we’re running for our life. (Pretend something is chasing you and you’ll find you can run faster than you ever thought you could.) The fourth lap we slow back down a little, maybe running the stairs single-stair or still doing the double stairs but running a little slower on the last sprint. Then we often walk one more lap around the parking lot or around the building with no stairs to cool down. This was what we did Sunday. In 85-90 degree heat.
We’ve never done it when it’s that warm. I was appalled Don wanted to. Apparently he acclimated to the heat in South Carolina, walking around outside, many miles each day in full dress uniform. So, good sport that I want to be, I gave it a try. I thought I would die when we first got out there. But after about a lap it wasn’t so bad. If you don’t mind sweating from every inch of your body.
Now, here’s the really neat part. My last deodorant application had been 24 hours before. I did not put on a fresh coat before we headed out because it’s not really deodorant in the typical sense and it’s definitely not an anti-perspirant. I wanted to really test the limits of my new hygiene regimen and finally get a second opinion on my stink factor (or possible lack thereof.)
So, after an hour of punishing heat and moderately strenuous exercise, I snuck a quick whiff of myself and counted myself relatively stink free. Hoping to not kill Don with laughter, I put up my arm and said, “Smell my pit.” Good sport that he is, he did. (With a bit of a smile on his face.) “Do I stink?” I asked eagerly. “Not really,” he said, clearly amused and uncertain about my behavior.
I went on to explain that I hadn’t put anything on since the day before and reminded him about my homemade mixture that I started using about 6-7 weeks ago. He was impressed. (Me too!!)
I’m convinced that this finally answers the mystery behind why Don doesn’t need to use deodorant. (This has always left people flabbergasted when they hear that he doesn’t.) He never really has, other than the odd time or two that he tried it and decided it wasn’t worth the time or effort. He’s never had a stink factor and we’ve always thought he was just blessed to be smelly-free. He does like to “smell good”, but that’s what cologne is for. I believe that because he never regularly used deodorant, that his body was not forced to adapt to the chemicals which get into your clothes, and your skin, changing your chemistry, in fact actually making you stinky and reinforcing your need to use deodorant. It’s a viscous merry-go-round that I’m so glad to be off.
About 20 years ago, not every man used a deodorant.
~ Dylan Jones