When it comes to practicing the Spartan lifestyle, it’s not just about the races, how you exercise and how you eat. Being a Spartan is also about how you treat others and the world around you. I recently went on a trip to the Exumas, Bahamas, and what I learned there definitely changed how I treat the world around me.
Ever since I was little, there was at least one person who nagged me “Conserve water, it won’t always be here.” or something along an eco friendly line. No matter how many times I heard it, I did nothing about it because I wasn’t sure what they were talking about or what I could do to help save water. The Exumas taught me a very clear reason why water conservation is important.
One of the places I stayed while on this vacation was Compass Cay which is a protected harbor. Water there was 50cents a gallon, and while that may not sound like much, it adds up quickly unless you use water wisely. To compare to the water prices back home, its about .002cents per gallon (national average. See page 11 on PDF) From this I learned that we take for granted how cheap and easy it is to acquire something so necessary in life. While in other places, water is not only expensive, but it’s also hard to acquire.
While there, we used a water meter to track the water usage over the course of our vacation. The numbers averaged out to 30 gallons a day per person (5 people). Those 30 gallons included showers, dishes, hosing down equipment after being in the salt water, using the restroom, and pretty much anything else water is used for at home except for gardening and drinking. During the trip, I didn’t feel like I was deprived during my showers or any other activity that used water, it was easily managed.
Time to put those 30 gallons per day into perspective for you. The average person takes about 2 showers everyday day, with standard showers lasting 7-15 minutes, and the standard shower heads pumps 2.5 gallons of water every minute. So if we did some quick math… showers per day x (length of shower x 2.5 gallons per minute) = total gallons of water spent on showers per day. Let’s use 10 as the length of shower, 2 x (10 x 2.5) which means we use about 50 gallons per day on showers ONLY. Which is more than each person had to use while I was away.
After looking at these numbers I started to realize how much water we truly waste. It’s truly crazy how much water we use daily, whats even crazier is the price we pay for it. Imagine if everyday you used 30 gallons of water at 50cents per gallon everyday at home, your monthly water bill would be $450 per person! Now imagine if you used 30 gallons of water at the average American price of .002 cents per gallon, your monthly water bill would be $1.86 per person! Those differences are extreme and not everyone could use 30 gallons per person, but imagine if you could use less than 100 gallons of water per day! Not only would your water bill drop, but you’re conserving water for future users.
There are so many ways to conserve water and most of them require you and not new appliances! When showering; turn off the water after getting your hair and body wet, shampoo and lather up, rinse off! Not only does this save water, it also makes your showers quicker allowing you to have more time spent doing something else. Turning off water when brushing your teeth or shaving can save about 200 gallons of water every month. Not watering your lawn as often, waiting to put all your dishes in the dishwasher instead of doing them each individually, and checking for leaks in plumbing once a year. If you want to spend money to save water, get a different shower head marked “WaterSense” and/or replace faucets and aerators that have the same label.
When it comes to conserving resources, people aren’t always thinking about someone else who may need it in the future. Sometimes it takes experiencing something firsthand before you truly understand how important it is and why people should be aware of it. Water is essential in many ways; its necessary for all forms of life, it’s important to athletes, household chores and so many other jobs. With only a limited amount on Earth, shouldn’t we stop and think about others and make the world a better place? I would love to hear how you conserve water and/or when you first started to realize it was important and why it was important to you. Leave a comment here, or you can also leave a comment on my or @JourneyToSpartan Instagram or tweet to me @Journey2Spartan!