We all know exercise is something we’re supposed to incorporate into our lives to be healthy. And we also know that getting in all the exercise we need can be time-consuming, or too difficult. But is it really?
The CDC (Center for Disease Control and Prevention) recommends at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic activity plus two or more days with muscle-strengthening exercises. That sounds like a lot, but if you spend just five days brisk-walking for 30 minutes, you pretty much accomplish the bare minimum!
For many years now, it was assumed that you needed intense and long exercises to lose weight or stay healthy, that you needed to at least raise your heart rate for a long period of time for that activity to count as exercise.
But there is new research showing that short exercises — being 10 or fewer minutes — is associated with a decreased risk of being overweight or obese. We don’t need to drip buckets of sweat for an hour every day of the week to be in shape or healthy! Luckily for us, household chores are a good way to fit exercise into your everyday routine. Running around doing errands or chores may actually be helping us kill two birds with one stone!
Here are some everyday activities that count as exercise.
Have you ever come home from shopping at the mall and thought to yourself, “Man, I’m beat.” Walking store to store, and then around within the store, finding what you want, trying on clothes…it’s a lot of work! But that’s a good thing now as it’s a great way to get your exercise on.
To make shopping an even better exercise, park further away and take stairs instead of elevators and escalators. The calories burned shopping will add up sooner than you think.
Most of the time, I don’t notice how much I’m actually moving when I vacuum, mop the floors, wash the dishes, or wipe down surfaces. But cleaning is probably one of my favorite ways to “exercise.”
I keep the house free from germs and bacteria, make it neat and organized, all while burning calories! Throw in laundry duty, and you’ll probably burn a few more calories!
Who said you only gain weight in the kitchen? The kitchen can be losing weight, especially when you have to chop up all your onions, garlic, and meats. That’s more arm work than you think! So don’t skimp out and buy those pre-cut veggies in a container.
Also, ditch the dishwasher and electric mixer, and do everything by hand for the extra burned calories!
Washing Your Car
Washing cars is no joke – especially when you’re in the sun! Think about all the wax-ons and wax-offs — you can burn 135 calories in 30 minutes.
Add in a few sets of calf raises to reach the roof of the car and a few sets of squats to wash the tires, and you have a whole new exercise going for you!
I have never been in more shape than when I lived in New York. Why? Because I commuted everywhere! Not only that, I walked everywhere there – the grocery store, laundromat, restaurants, bars, parties, friends’ houses…you name it!
If you want that extra exercise, get off one stop earlier and walk the rest of the way. Unless you’re going on a hot date, then that might be a bad idea.
Before you get excited, we aren’t trying to say you’re going to get healthy sitting down all day long. But there are things you can do while parked in a chair to get in a bit of exercise.
Try lifting your shoulders to your ears, tighten your core, squeeze your butt, and let the muscle toning begin.
Walking Your Dog
This exercise is good for you and your dog! Instead of just taking your beloved out for just a few minutes for a bathroom break, spend an extra even 10 minutes to give them more sniffing time while you get in more exercise!
Tell us what other everyday things you’ve done that could be considered as exercise!