As you know, losing a significant amount of weight is hard work. It takes time, effort, and tremendous dedication. It is important to keep in mind, though, that there are tons of little extra measures you can take to help you stay in shape and potentially cut some corners along the way. Everyday household chores, for instance, like cleaning your house can burn some surprisingly serious calories. Read on for some helpful hints on how to make the most of your demanding day whether or not you have time for a “real” workout.
Exactly How Many Calories Do I Burn Cleaning?
On average you burn 200 calories per hour doing household cleaning.
Depending on the particular activity you are performing, the answer to the question, “How many calories do I burn cleaning?” may vary quite a bit. You can burn anywhere from an estimated 50 to as many as 200 calories in a short half hour of cleaning. Mopping your floor burns about 112 calories in 30 minutes and is a great workout for your biceps and your shoulders. If you skip the mop and actually take the time to scrub it, you can burn an impressive 200 calories every half hour and get a much more genuine workout for your arms (not to mention how much better your floor will look). Just be sure to switch arms when you are about halfway through so they each get an even workout.
Setting aside a special day dedicated to laundry can prove to be a noteworthy supplemental workout as well. The entire process of doing a single load of laundry, meaning loading the washer, loading the dryer, and folding and putting away the clothes, burns around 200 calories total. If some of the clothes need to be ironed, you will burn an additional 70 calories for every half hour you spend ironing.
More obscure household jobs that you may perform only periodically are great calorie-burning activities as well. Washing your windows helps tone your arms, back, and shoulders and burns around 125 calories for every continuous half hour of cleaning. Again, just remember to switch arms halfway through (or perhaps every other window if you have a lot of windows so that one arm does not get excessively tired) to work out both sides of your body evenly. Gardening burns about 128 calories in 30 minutes and works out your arms, back, and legs. Painting, which works out your arms and your core, burns about 144 calories in half an hour. Cleaning your gutters burns around 160 calories in 30 minutes and works out your arms, legs, shoulders, and upper back.
How Many Calories Do I Burn Cleaning House in General?
If you would prefer not to break up your household cleaning process into specific jobs, you can look at it this way. Depending on your age, height, sex, and weight, you can expect to burn a certain number of calories for every hour or half hour of continuous vigorous housework. For example, a 30-year-old female who is five feet and five inches tall and weighs 150 pounds can expect to burn around 153 calories in an hour of cleaning.
What about other rooms of the home? How many calories do I burn cleaning my room? How many calories do I burn cleaning the bathroom? You can also use the previous rule to calculate your approximate number of calories burned for other rooms in your home. Keep in mind that activities that are more strenuous, as scrubbing floors and bathtubs, will burn a lot more calories than simpler activities like dusting (think around 130 to 180 calories per half hour versus only 50 calories per half hour, respectively).
Okay, so cleaning the house probably sounds about as fun as working out, or maybe even less so. Since it has to be done anyway, it is at least some guaranteed regular exercise. Try doing some things to make it more fun and less like a chore. Make a playlist of fun, upbeat songs that you love. Dancing around and singing while you clean/work will make the time fly. Before you know it, not only will you have a spotless house, but you will have also burned several hundred calories and elevated your mood by making the tasks more enjoyable.
If you are really serious about losing weight and staying in shape, you must be careful not to view your household cleaning as an alternative or replacement for a regular workout routine. While cleaning your house does burn some extra calories and help work and tone various muscles, it just does not get your heart pumping quite like a good strenuous workout does and will not have the same observable weight loss effect. Look at it as more of a way to work off some extra calories in addition to regular exercise and a way to get more activity in when perhaps you have been pressed for time and have not been working out as often or for as long as you normally would. Most importantly, stay motivated and do whatever you can to make it fun!