epsilonGreedy

Does self building improve health?

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I hope this is a positive thread. I have lost 6lbs following making an offer on a plot and since then I have been mentally and physically buzzing around on a high.

 

Last week my fitbit clocked up my highest weekly step count of 102,600 and this is before the build has actually started. Currently I am practicing laying bricks, measuring the plot, visiting suppliers and generally waylaying any bored navvy, tiler or brickie for a chat.

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Yes

 

But

 

No...

 

But

 

Hmmm...

 

No, yes

 

I mean it should but

 

No

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Physically I suppose yes up to a point where you end up doing too much. 

Mentally it will cause no end of lost sleep and stress.

Plus it will definitely accelerate the amount of grey hairs you have or make the fringe retreat further back than you would have liked. Or if your really lucky both.

But apart from that spending time outside in the fresh air will always have a positive effect on you. 

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I 'finished' over 6 months ago and I'm still knackered!

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Posted (edited)

Not sure it does really, you get periods when you think all is good and its positive and then you have stressful periods and it does nothing for your health.  Its a roller coaster and your health and outlook is heavily influenced by it.  I'm pretty tired physically most of the time.  If you do little of the work yourself then this may be different.  Enjoy the phase you're at and don't burn out yet.

Edited by CC45

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Influenced I'm sure too by the level of debt on completion! 

 

 

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Well it sure did nothing for my husband’s health although I can’t blame that on the build. He was always convinced that breathing in general crap from sawing wood and the like kicked it all off however. 

 

So physical health yes and no, mental health yes and no. I think the stressful times outweigh the euphoric times tbh but it’s important to embrace the joy when it comes and there is joy albeit it’s sometimes difficult to retain a sense of perspective at times. This forum is good for technical advice but provides general counselling and support too :)

 

I think I would call it character building but the sense of achievement when you reach the end endures. 

 

 

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I think a lot of the stress

Certainly financial stress 

Is self induced 

We all underestimate many of the costs I think that Spons and other guides are to blame They tell us that certain trades will cost £22 per house and certain tasks will take X number of hours Then when we get a quote That’s if we manage to get someone to quote 

There quote isn’t based on a hourly rate It’s simply plucked out of the air and three times what we exspected 

Then the spreadsheets are telling us we are over budget

The stress starts

If I was asked by someone just starting a selfbuild 

I would say allow more money

and more TIME

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I love working on my various projects and have always been an outdoors person. Lack of money causes me mental strain that lurks below the surface and distorts  my normally positive outlook far to frequently. Yes there are health hazards on and around the building site but propper precautions should prevent serious injuries. Money seems to be the biggest reason for stress and stress causes all sorts of problems.    

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I’m physically fitter doing this self Build. In the last four weeks I’ve taken delivery of the insulation and the ICF block, this has involved me walking up and down the drive, a round trip of 200m, 170 time’s carrying the stuff. Im doing the labouring as it saves me money. As others have said getting quotes that are realistic can be a challlenge. Mentally I’m a fairly chilled sort of guy, nothing gets me down, mind you, everything takes longer than you think and this can be a problem for others around you, my wife is always pointing out that “you said x would take four weeks, it’s taken you six weeks”. The finances can be a challenge, stuff is expensive and you do need to shop around. On the plus side my wife has just been made redundant after 32 years at the same firm, so she get a reasonable redundancy packeage and I get an extra pair of hands! The aim now is the complete the build on or below budget and be mortgage free with a bit left over.

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Yes and no. I have absolutely loved building the dream that’s been in my head for 20 years, it has kept me fairly  fit for my age. I am lucky that I don’t get stressed as stress has caused me bad health in the past and I won’t go there again. I am lucky that I don’t need a mortgage and my budget is going well. I am now, after a few years, becoming tired of the endless work and the end in Ni as they say, time to enjoy it. Then I have to sort out the acre of garden ?

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We are trying not to let things get to us, do not mention windows!! We recently lost two people aged 52 and 62 so it really brings it home about how short life is. We are trying to take one day at a time and enjoy the whole process but not sure what the body is doing in the background. My hair already gone so no physical changes that I can report. As others have said have your coffee mid morning and be realistic with your plans!!

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I’ve lost half a stone but the knees are now truly knackered but that’s due to lots of reasons .....! 

 

Stress levels go up and down, sometimes it’s money, sometimes materials and subs so you go with the flow and don’t let it get you down ....!

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Posted (edited)
8 hours ago, epsilonGreedy said:

I hope this is a positive thread. I have lost 6lbs following making an offer on a plot and since then I have been mentally and physically buzzing around on a high.

 

Last week my fitbit clocked up my highest weekly step count of 102,600 and this is before the build has actually started. Currently I am practicing laying bricks, measuring the plot, visiting suppliers and generally waylaying any bored navvy, tiler or brickie for a chat.

 

Please update when you’re working full time, the build is going wrong and you’ve run out of money.

 

at the mo, you are 1) on holiday & 2) haven’t started

Edited by daiking
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Well I think my build kept me reasonably fit physically, but made me mentally ill, but then Wendy has always said I've got problems.:(

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The bit i self built was on an extension, physically i ended up losing a lot of weight and had a much stronger core, mentally, i still haven't got over the worry, stress, and the endless combination of different materials of which you can choose from buzzing around in my head (partly because its still not complete on the inside!), and the worst bit, did i choose right.

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10 minutes ago, PeterStarck said:

Well I think my build kept me reasonably fit physically, but made me mentally ill, but then Wendy has always said I've got problems.:(

 

The impact on my health was much the same, except my wife didn't really spot how bad I had got until things were really bad.  I got in a bit better shape physically, apart from knackering my knees, a wrist and a shoulder, but mentally it was a very different story.  I've never (as far as I'm aware) suffered from any mental health problems before, but there was a point in the build where I got very depressed indeed, to the point where I pretty much stopped functioning.  That episode slowed the build down a great deal, as there is no quick and easy cure for depression; it takes time to recognise you are ill, that you need treatment and to adjust to the changes you have to make in order to cope with life. 

 

It changed me a lot, sometimes in unexpected ways.  I've never liked working outside, for example, but now get a lot of pleasure from doing jobs like preparing the ground, planting and looking after the hedges and trees I've recently put in.  A neighbour commented on this last week as he was passing, saying that our trees must be the best looked after in the village, from the time I spent working out there around them.  For me it's therapeutic, not something I'd have believed possible a few years ago.

 

 

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Posted (edited)

For the benefit of those reading this who are still at the early planning stages I would say that it's important to realise that the process is like a marathon rather than a sprint. However you decide to manage the process, whether you're still in full time employment or retired, make sure that the way that you're doing it is in a manner that is sustainable over a long period of time without putting yourself under unsustainable levels of stress.

 

My own self build holiday home is only small at 71m2. The build itself only took 8 months but the whole process from first meeting with a Planning Consultant to finally finishing the externals on the 1.5 acre garden last weekend has taken us 5 years.

Edited by Ian
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What is health?

Its a series of things. I assume you too @epsilonGreedy heard, read that bit about fitness and manual labour.  That hastily written article  , is a summary based on a BJSM paper

 

Quoting directly from the source

 

What are the new findings?

  • We are the first to find evidence consistent with the physical activity paradox in a systematic review with meta-analysis, summarising evidence from 17 longitudinal studies with 1 93 696 participants.
  • We showed that men engaging in high (compared with low) level occupational physical activity have a 18% increased risk of all-cause mortality, even after adjustment for relevant factors, such as leisure time physical activity.
  • This evidence indicates that physical activity guidelines should differentiate between occupational and leisure time physical activity.

http://bjsm.bmj.com/content/early/2018/04/17/bjsports-2017-098540 (accessed May 2018)

 

The study is based on other studies (meta analysis), and just before the conclusion the article includes this caveat

Studies included in this review were based only on self-reports of occupational PA and all but one [...] used crude categories (with heterogeneous definitions) to operationalise occupational PA exposure. 

 

That is academic code for  '... beware this might all be complete bollox...'  It's based on self-reporting. And ( I am trying to be really fair about a weak piece of research ) the authors do say.....  that they need to develop better measures in order to be more confident of their conclusions

 

A weak piece of journalism based on a research paper that the researchers themselves say is weak.

 

Go figure.

 

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3 minutes ago, JSHarris said:

 

The impact on my health was much the same, except my wife didn't really spot how bad I had got until things were really bad.  I got in a bit better shape physically, apart from knackering my knees, a wrist and a shoulder, but mentally it was a very different story.  I've never (as far as I'm aware) suffered from any mental health problems before, but there was a point in the build where I got very depressed indeed, to the point where I pretty much stopped functioning.  That episode slowed the build down a great deal, as there is no quick and easy cure for depression; it takes time to recognise you are ill, that you need treatment and to adjust to the changes you have to make in order to cope with life. 

 

It changed me a lot, sometimes in unexpected ways.  I've never liked working outside, for example, but now get a lot of pleasure from doing jobs like preparing the ground, planting and looking after the hedges and trees I've recently put in.  A neighbour commented on this last week as he was passing, saying that our trees must be the best looked after in the village, from the time I spent working out there around them.  For me it's therapeutic, not something I'd have believed possible a few years ago.

 

 

Gardening for me too is a great stress reliever, and I spend as much time as i can out there.

 

Believe it or not, taping and jointing dry lining has a similar effect! I find the concentration required to get a good finish (being a non pro)is enough to block all the other rubbish out in the world.

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2 minutes ago, recoveringacademic said:

 

A weak pierce of journalism based on a research paper that the researchers themselves say is weak.

 

 

Not at all uncommon, I think.  If you want a reasonably well-balanced view of medical research data, then Cochrane is pretty much the gold standard, I think: http://www.cochrane.org/  If you have any spare time, and an interest in it, you can help as a volunteer.  If you have a background that has involved peer reviewing scientific papers, then you can be even more useful.  Cochrane is staffed largely by volunteers, who give their time freely, solely to try and better sift out hard evidence on a wide range of medical treatments.

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Concur with much of the above.

 

We had ups and downs but they happen in all areas of life, we just chose this path rather than have it forced on us.

 

Now I'm almost, almost finished (last bits of landscaping etc) there is a lot of satisfaction that we did it and that is rewarding - also, warts and all, I know this house inside out and I own all the success and mistakes. Bank account is empty, car is knackered but we came through more or less intact.

 

I don't think I could every buy another house as I'd probably be more stressed worrying about what horrors were lurking behind the walls etc..

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I understand Jeremy,s finding about working outside, I am beginning to loath the work left indoors ( unless it’s raining?) and want to get outside and tidy up the garden and paddock, it’s been a sh@t heap for so long. Also I have a workshop where I want to tinker, do woodwork WHEN I want to, not because that’s the next job on my long list to get finished. That being said I love what has been completed on our build so far. I had a long hot soak in my new deep bath last night?

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1 hour ago, daiking said:

at the mo, you are 1) on holiday & 2) haven’t started

 

 

This is true and I intend to keep the holiday mood going as long as possible, so far I have have had two factory tours.

 

Most holiday makers in York go to the viking exhibition, I had a personal conducted tour of a brick factory instead. Modern sash window manufacturing at Barnesdale Windows in Donning Lincolnshire was even more interesting.

 

A holiday is just a break in routine.

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14 minutes ago, epsilonGreedy said:

This is true and I intend to keep the holiday mood going as long as possible, so far I have have had two factory tours.

[...]

 

Excellent.

Good to be reminded about that bit of the build. Why not continue your holiday by choogling up the M6 and mixing some parge coat for me? When that's done there's... and there's... and after that ....

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