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37 must-know life hacks (1-10)

Fed up of life’s little niggles? Tired of the inconveniences that drag you down on a daily basis? Sick to the back teeth of your trousers falling off the hanger? Or never having duct tape around when you most need it? Fear not. We’re about to make your existence an absolute doddle, thanks to this collection of the greatest life hacks known to man. Here are the first ten, come back each day for the next set...

1. Balls to your muscles

(with this homemade roller)

Forget fancy equipment – just duct tape two tennis balls together, and you can easily work your leg muscles after the match.

Tennis ball muscle roller ()

 

2. Stuff your goalie gloves

(with newspaper, that is)

The paper absorbs the smell of sweat and toil. The stench of defeat, unfortunately, is much more stubborn. 

3. Take off your sweaty football top

(using the “X” method)

youtube.com/thefifatrainer

  • Back straight, head lowered
  • Cross your arms behind your neck
  • Grab the shirt at your left shoulder blade with your right hand, and vice versa
  • Bend forward and pull the shirt over your head

 

T-shirt hack ()

 

4. Wrap your bicycle pump with tape

(for emergencies)

You never know when you’ll need some duct tape for punctures, repairs, impromptu roadside surgery and so on. 

5. Keep your inner tubes

(and use as resistance bands)

Recycled inner tubes are perfect for that post-cycle warmdown. In a sitting position, stretch your legs out in front of you, and hook the tube under your foot. Push your legs against the tube while pulling the loose “tail” tight with your hands, stretching your calves. 

6. Finish with lower back & forearm exercises

(for a stronger workout)

These are often the body’s weakest points, so fatiguing them straight away will hinder your workout. “The lower back is a small muscle,” explains trainer David Marshall. “You need it strong, don’t pre-exhaust it. It’s part of the girdle that keeps you stable through the rest of your workout. Save lower back exercises until last to avoid weakening that stability.” Bodydoctor.com  

7. Clean your bike chain

(with toothbrushes)

Take two toothbrushes and tape them together, bristles touching each other. Run the brushes along the chain, cleaning both sides at once. 

Clean your bike chain with toothbrushes ()

 

8. Do weights before cardio 

(while the muscles are fresh)

Lifting first is also great for getting the muscles into fat-burning mode. “For weightlifters who also do a bit of cardio for fitness, do that bit afterwards,” says British Weightlifting coach Dave Sawyer. “Lift when the muscles are at full power, and do cardio to loosen up the muscle groups
after a heavy workout.” 
Britishweightlifting.org

9. Don’t Miss Those Concert Tickets

(with this foolproof system)

  • You can schedule alerts for when tickets go on sale with most big-name vendors. To be doubly sure, set an alert on your phone
  • Log into your account 15 minutes before tickets go on sale (with card details pre-loaded if you can)
  • Refresh the ticket-selling page with one minute to go
  • Refresh like a mother-effer until you get tickets
  • Hold your nerve and remember, good things come to those who wait
  • If all else fails, use StubHub.com for cheap re-sale on the day of the gig 
Gig tickets scrap book ()

 

10. Get The Most Out Of The Cinema

(by knowing their cheap ticket deals)

Empire Cinemas: Last Chance Thursdays see movies screened at the end of their run for a knockdown price.

Picturehouse: A membership (£45-£55) gets you free tickets, discounts on future screenings, 10 per cent off popcorn, and other savings.

Vue: “Super Tuesday” promises 1/3 off tickets all day. A good reason to pull a sickie every Tuesday, if you ask us. 

Check back tomorrow for more life hacks...

Illustrations: Chris Barker

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