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Housework Counts As Movement!

So - my husband is one of those guys who walks and walks to get his steps in each day.  For one year his goal was to tally up 30,000 steps per day on average and by golly he met that goal in 2020!  We live in the country and every morning and evening he is obsessive about walking the land and will not be swayed to participate in anything until this daily routine is complete.  Of course, I am left feeling like I am not getting enough exercise in -  because I am too busy doing things that need to be done around the house!!

Not to worry!!  If you too are feeling like you don’t have time to get your steps in due to the many chores that need to be accomplished…..pulling weeds, laundry, doing the dishes, sweeping, mopping,  mowing the lawn - and the list goes on - you can throw that notion out the window!!

It turns out that house and yard work may serve as more of a workout than you could ever imagine. This also explains why you’re feeling fatigued by the end of the day when your husband is telling you that he made it to 50,000 steps and well - you’ve JUST been doing some Spring cleaning….waa, waa, waaa…..You’ve been working hard and actually have probably burned just as many calories getting things done! And although daily exercise is vital to a healthy lifestyle, don’t stress too much if you aren’t able to make it to the gym regularly - or get your walking in each day. You can burn calories while checking off your to-do list around the house.  The key is to keep your body MOVING!!

Also, it appears that simply believing that  housework is beneficial to your health and treating it  as exercise has proven to be effective? A Harvard study concluded that women working in housekeeping worked harder physically and saw greater health benefits after being told their work was approved by the Surgeon General for daily exercise. In four short weeks, these women saw a decrease in body fat percentage, blood pressure, weight, waist-to-hip ratio, and body mass index, whereas the control study did not. Your mindset matters, and having a positive attitude on chores at home can help you benefit not only mentally, but physically.

Try these calorie-burning chores around the house to keep moving and improve your health!!

  • Vacuuming: 176 calories - A push and pull motion that will engage your chest, back, and arms.

  • Gardening: 287 calories - Pulling weeds while squatting, planting, and raking leaves make for a full-body workout.

  • Bathroom: 180 calories  - Cleaning the toilet and scrubbing the bathtub will work your core, back, and arms.

  • Cooking: 136 calories - Stirring, whisking, chopping, and kneading will give your upper body a surprising workout.

  • Mopping: 248 calories - Your shoulders will be on fire!

  • Mowing the lawn: 375 calories - Feel the burn with this calorie-crushing chore that will target your thighs, back, and arms.

  • Sweeping: 272 calories - A similar motion to mopping and vacuuming.

  • Shoveling snow: a whopping 428 calories! - You’ll feel it in your legs, core, back, shoulders, and arms.

  • Laundry: 150 calories - Changing sheets, ironing, bending down to retrieve clothes, and carrying your hamper up and down the stairs will get your heart pumping.

  • Cleaning the car: 204 calories - Washing, cleaning, and vacuuming will raise that heart rate.

  • Painting: 340 calories - Another great workout for your upper body.

  • Washing dishes: 164 calories - Your forearms, biceps, triceps, and chest will feel this one.

  • Moving furniture: 409 calories! - Spring cleaning, rearranging, and helping your neighbors move are ways to demolish those calories.

  • Dusting: 178 calories - Try to reach those high and low corners for full body motion.

*Calories per hour

**Calories are based on a 150-pound person.

You can always include some mini additions to your “house workout.” Engage your core, try some calf raises while cooking, use ankle and wrist weights as you complete tasks around the house, perform squats with items such as a laundry hamper, even the detergent jugs, or put on some catchy tunes to motivate you to move a little more and burn more calories!

Now that you’ve got the knowledge, you’ll have even more motivation to dive into your cleaning and complete those household projects on your list - and you might even enjoy it!

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Posted by Margaret Strause
Margaret Strause
Margaret Strause is the Director of Front End Sales and Marketing, as well as a buyer and merchandiser for Hometown Pharmacy. Stop by one of our stores to shop our exceptional home decor, clothing, gifts, and so much more.