Thursday, July 2, 2009

Get Clean...FAST!

I pride myself on being able to take fast showers. I think showers take up too much time, especially if your exercise routine or yardwork or whatever has you taking multiple showers a day. I realize that people need to take them in order to not be stinky, but each minute wasted in the shower is a minute that you could've been doing something else, like playing boardgames or eating fudgsicles or learning how to whistle by putting your fingers in your mouth (something I've recently been trying, unsuccessfully, to master).

Here are some tips to help you minimize your time in the shower so that you can have more time for doing fun stuff:

  • The most important thing is to stay focused. Your goal is to get in and out as quickly as possible. No wasted movements. You need to be efficient. (But at the same time, don't cut any corners. You still need to get clean!)
  • Those poofy sponge things may look like they're for girls, but they will definitely get you clean faster. Yeah, your friends might make fun of you. But you know what? They're the ones wasting their precious minutes with inefficient washcloths or whatever else they're using. I figure that over the course of a year, your time saved using the poofy sponge will have allowed you to have mixed and drank at least 300 glasses of chocolate milk more than your slow friends. Who's laughing now?
  • You need to figure out the right amount of shower gel to use. Using too little is a huge mistake. Having to reopen the bottle and squeeze out more soap is a big time waster. Better to use a little more than you think you'll need. Don't use too much though, because you'll end up wasting time at the end wringing the excess soap out of your sponge.
  • Keep your hair as short as possible. Shave your head if you can (this will also save you money, since you can do it yourself without having to go to the barber). Less hair on your head means less hair to clean, and less soap to rinse out. Most importantly, it takes less time to dry.
  • A shower gel that says 'For Hair and Body' will make it so that you only have to open and squeeze one bottle. Definitely a good investment.
  • Make sure your water temperature is a little too hot or a little too cold for your liking. This will help prevent you from wanting to hang out in the shower.
  • If you have glass windows on your shower, you'll need to wipe them down. I use a squeegee thing with the following technique: Bend your arms and/or back so that your shoulder is positioned midway between the top and bottom of the window. Unless you have an unusually tall shower door, this should allow you to clean the window with up and down arm movements only (moving your back or legs will slow you down. Arm movements are much quicker.). Start on one side and use a shuffle-step to move on as you wipe off each section.
  • For clothes, t-shirts and baggy basketball shorts are by far the fastest clothes to put on. I try and stick with those exclusively. And try to get socks that aren't too tight. Remember, getting dressed is part of the deal too. You don't want to waste any time here either.

Now, you might be a little skeptical. You might be thinking to yourself, can I really save that much time doing these things? Well, let's long do you normally take in the shower each day? 15 minutes? 20 minutes? A half hour?

Well, yesterday, I used my stopwatch and timed myself. I was able to get cleaned AND dressed in 3 minutes 59.31 seconds. Clean and dressed in under 4 minutes!

While you were wasting a half an hour with your bar soap and your washcloths and your singing and your separate bottle of shampoo and your just right temperature water and your shirt with buttons, I was able to get cleaned, dressed, eat a bowl of cereal, and watch a whole episode of Happy Days.

See? I knew you'd begin to see it my way. And don't worry. With the right focus, the right tools, and a little practice, you too could be a Sub-Four Minute Showerer. Good luck!

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