Household chores as exercise

Gather up your cleaning supplies and give yourself an excellent at home workout.

There will definitely be days where it's too cold to run outside or you just don't feel like hopping in the car, trekking to the gym and fighting for a parking spot. But that doesn't mean you can't get a work out if you really want one!

Household chores can definitely burn calories and function as a good source of cardio – think of how sweaty and tired you feel after doing some heavy duty deep cleaning, like a good bathtub scrubbing or washing the floor by hand. So rather than looking at your household chores as, well, chores, try to look at them as an alternative but excellent form of exercise.

Calories burned per chore

Here are some common chores as well as how many calories you might burn doing each one:

  • Washing the dishes: If you want to get a great work out washing dishes, it will be the one time you ever think "The bigger dirty heap of pots and pans, the better!" Doing some heavy duty scrubbing will burn about 80 calories in just 15 minutes of continuous dishwashing.
  • Mopping: Mopping is a great upper and lower body workout. Additionally, in just 30 minutes of mopping, you will burn around 120 calories.
  • Painting: Have you been thinking of giving your bedroom a touch-up coat of paint for awhile?Talk about a good reason to stay home from the gym. Painting can be an excellent workout, burning up to 300 calories per hour and building lean muscle mass in your arms and core.
  • Cleaning the gutters: This might be one of the best calorie-burning household activities you can do. It turns out that cleaning the gutters requires shoulder, upper back, arm and leg muscles – not to mention the core muscles are engaged to help you balance on the ladder. You can burn 320 calories in one hour of gutter cleaning – just be careful not to fall.
  • Vacuuming: Depending on how difficult it is to lug your vacuum around the house, you'll likely banish at least 80 calories per 30 minutes of vacuuming.
  • Window washing: Give those streaky windows a good cleaning, inside and out, and exercise your arms and back at the cost of 200 calories per hour.
  • Scrubbing floors: If mopping just isn't clean enough for you, get on your hands and knees instead and give the floors a good scrubbing. You'll burn a whopping 175 calories in just 30 minutes!

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