When you think of exercise, do you automatically picture yourself on a treadmill in a gym? Or spin in a pool? If so, you may be surprised how many calories you can burn through daily activities.
Housework is a chore that everyone has to do at some point. Instead of dreading it, move on quickly with your chores and you can have a great workout. A 150-pound person can expend up to 140 calories cleaning the floor for half an hour. Vacuuming for 30 minutes uses up about the same number of calories. Cut another 75 calories by ironing for half an hour.
Outdoor chores also provide great opportunities to burn calories. The same 150-pound person will burn 177 calories pulling weeds for half an hour and another 120 calories mowing the lawn. Because gardening often involves stretching and push-ups, it offers both muscle and cardiovascular benefits. Save 300 calories by spending an hour washing your car. Bagging leaves and grass clippings burns 136 calories in 30 minutes.
If you like to entertain, you can make up for that piece of cake by cleaning up after the party. If it takes you an hour, you will burn more than 300 calories. If you also do the dishes, you will burn another 152 calories. If you spend an hour rearranging the furniture before and after your party, that’s a whopping 450 calories. However, keep in mind that all of these activities must be performed at the same level of intensity over time to receive the full benefits. Still, even if you only burned half your estimated calories preparing and cleaning up after your party, that would still be a 500 calorie cake.
Home improvement chores can also burn calories. An hour of painting indoors burns 204 calories. Removing and installing the mat wastes calories in 30 minutes. Roofs burn a whopping 400 calories per hour, just be sure to drink plenty of water if you’re spending the day on a hot roof.
Even something as simple as going to the grocery store can burn calories. Half an hour of vigorous shopping will spend about 130 calories. If you walk to the store for half an hour, subtract another 100 calories from your daily total. Just don’t spend all your savings on Oreos.
If all else fails, simply sleeping for 8 hours burns 50 calories.