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October 7, 2016

Hidden Wonder Workout – Your Household Chores

If you’re tired of going to the gym and have some housework to catch up on, with a little advance planning you can kill two birds with one stone. Imagine the extra hours you’ll have for other activities when you combine your workouts with essential chores! This handy guide (assembled with some help from our friends at will show you some of the best ways to burn calories and build strength while you turn your home into a showplace. Time It! When you’re ready to take on some serious housework, be sure to set a timer or alarm for thirty minutes. This is the most commonly suggested duration for a meaningful workout, so you want to make sure you remain active for at least this long. Dive In Head First… Put on your headphones. Listening to energizing music with a fast tempo will help you keep moving at a consistent pace. Studies have shown that rapid music with at least 120 beats per minute will not only keep you entertained and lift your spirits, it will also increase your speed while you work and improve your heart and lung function. You can also have your music do double duty as your timer if you build playlists in thirty minute blocks. Dress for the Occasion Make sure you wear light, loose comfortable clothing and athletic shoes to do your housework. Star in the Floor Show Hands down, taking care of your floors is one of the best ways to burn calories. Sweeping, mopping, vacuuming and scrubbing are top calorie burners, torching 190-250 per hour for a 150 pound person. While vacuuming, flex your muscles one at a time, starting with your pelvis and tracking down to your upper abs. Try to keep them flexed for the entire vacuuming session. The forward and back motion of vacuuming is a great workout for your abdominal muscles, and if you use vigorous arm movements, you’ll notice a difference in your arms and shoulders as you go along. You can also do lunges with your legs as you vacuum. Check out this quick “how-to”, complete with video! When sweeping, scrubbing or mopping, make sure you switch arms frequently, using your right and left sides evenly. Favoring one side over the other will create a painful muscle imbalance. Get on your hands and knees and scrub intensely. This intense exercise works your shoulders and upper arms – and trust us, you’ll definitely break a sweat. Try NOT to Save Time Instead of heaving a whole load of laundry into the machine at once, use the single piece squat method to tone your legs and tush. Put the laundry basket on the floor next to the machine, and use a squat method like this one to put each piece of clothing into the wash separately. Another great trick is to NOT consolidate trips up and down the stairs. Instead of loading your arms with as many items you can carry, take only one or two pieces up at a time, so that you’re getting great cardio by climbing the stairs as many times as possible. Do you realize you can burn up to 500 calories in an hour by climbing stairs? Be Crystal Clear Reach high and use sweeping motions to wash windows and burn up to 180 calories an hour! Outdoor Chores, Outdoor Workout Weeding and hoeing your garden can burn up to 300 calories per hour, as will pushing a manual mower over riding one. Don’t give in to the temptation to use a blower on your leaves…rake them instead for a burn of almost 400 calories per hour! Try cleaning gutters, which will help you shed about 320 calories per hour. Washing a car can burn about 230, while spreading paint will burn between 250 and 300 calories per hour when you’re swiping big surfaces such as exterior walls. These are some of our favorite ideas to get you started, but we know you’ll be able to come up with more great ideas for making your home your own personal gym!

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