Pumping an Iron

8th March 2019

Spring cleaning isn’t just mentally rewarding, it’s good for you phyically too. Housework is one of those things we do without giving much thought to just how beneficial it is, but tasks like vacuuming, washing the dishes and ironing can use up hundreds of calories and save hours in the gym. Get your home and garden – and yourself –in shape, by tackling the following chores, as Miriam Fairhurst of health and fitness site Vivotion.com explains … 

1. Scrubbing the bath
Removing soap scum from your tub with a bit of added elbow grease for 15 minutes can burn up to 50 calories, which is the same as 250 jumping jacks. This chore is great for toning arms and shoulder muscles.  

2. Folding the Laundry
When factoring in loading and unloading the washing machine, hanging up the clothes and putting them away – doing the laundry can burn around 70 calories in an hour, which many will be pleased to hear is the same as doing 70 sit ups.  

3. Cleaning windows
If your windows have seen better days, spend an hour giving them a good clean them and burn 136 calories while you’re at it. That’s the same as jogging for 15 minutes. 

4. Washing pots and pans
Scrubbing away at the dishes can burn an impressive 180 calories over a week if you spend 15 minutes doing it every day. This equates to swimming for just under 30 minutes.  

5. Whizzing the vacuum around
Giving your carpets a good clean can burn 90 calories in half an hour, which is the same as 15 minutes of kickboxing. Depending on size of your house, vacuuming can get you nearer to the daily recommendation of 10,000 steps  

6. Getting out the Duster
Something as easy as doing the dusting can burn 25 calories in 15 minutes, the same as two minutes of planking.

7. Ironing away
If you spend three hours over a week getting the creases out of your clothes you can burn 264 calories, the same as a Zumba class. Standing still for long periods of time burns calories and works your core muscles too. Make sure to press down evenly and switch arms so both get an even workout.  

8. Making beds
Changing the linen of a family of four’s beds can burn 52 calories in 30 minutes, the same as a mile long walk.  

9. Mopping and sweeping
Cleaning the floors for 30 minutes can burn 96 calories, which is equivalent to 15 minutes on the treadmill.  

10. Mowing the lawn
Cutting the grass with a regular push mower can burn 150 calories per hour; or if you prefer, you can do 10 minutes of HIIT (high intensity interval training).  

11. Weeding the flower beds
Pottering in the garden for 30 minutes can burn around 200 calories, which is same as cycling steadily for four miles. Digging works your shoulder and abdominals so it’s great for an all-round workout.

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