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Chores That Can Burn Calories

Updated on May 12, 2011

Why Get Complicated?

Have you ever convinced yourself it was time to join a gym, and once you got inside the gym you felt overwhelmed at the sight of all the different types of equipment and programs they had? If you use this giant thing, you can tone your abs, butt and hair! And over there in that room we have spider yoga pilates workouts for you!


How about buying new exercise equipment. You might just be looking for an extra set of small weights, but have you noticed how they bombard you with expensive and weird equipment that you really don't need or want? Can't there just be a "no frills" section where I can buy practical and affordable exercise equipment?

Better yet, isn't there a way I can get as great a work out at home, as I would with any of this crazy nonsense?


Have you ever thought about how much work it is just to do chores around your home?

I'll be you already burn a good amount of calories from regular chores that you never would have considered to be great exercises. Anything that gets you moving and away from the couch, is worthy of being a part of your exercise regimen. Not only because it will help you physically, but it will help keep your home nice and improve your stress level. That's benefits in three areas that almost everyone needs a boost in.

Mowing Your Lawn

I don't know about you, but even mowing our small lawn can be exhausting. We live in a small area of north Seattle with a small front yard that needs to be mowed at least 6 or 7 times in the summer. It could really use it more often, though that's the minimum amount.

Everything about mowing your lawn is an athletic experience. From the moment you pull it out and push it to the lawn, to the moment you empty the bag, is an exercise that helps your body in multiple ways. The two most exercise-beneficial parts, are when you are in the process of mowing your lawn and when you are emptying the basket. Starting the lawn mower is a chore for me, as the pull start is a bit old, though that exercise might vary depending on your mower and your luck with pull starts...

On a side note, if you want to be eco-friendly and burn thrice the calories, you can mow your lawn with an older Push Mower. These lawn mowers are all blades, no engine and will squeeze buckets of sweat from you by the time you finish even a small patch of lawn.


There are many painting chores that need to be done around the home on a regular basis. Many of these chores are overlooked because of the amount of effort that goes into them. Though if you're looking to lose weight, get fit or burn calories, there is no reason to avoid painting chores anymore!

One of the best home-painting chores you can do, is painting your homes exterior.

Most home owners only paint their homes every 8 to 10 years, while their homes really could use an extra coat every 1.5 to 2 years. It helps keep the siding in good condition and shows that you take care of your home. It also means you'll be aware of any developing problems such as pests making homes in your home, parts of your home that need to be repaired and saves you money in the long run from issues that went on without notice.

Painting your home is a great way to burn calories. I spent 5 years in the residential exterior home painting industry, and I tell you I never had to think about my weight while doing that work. Even if you just do it once per summer, you will still find many physical and mental health benefits.

You'll need to carry around and climb up and down on a ladder, carry heavy paint buckets, walk around hardware stores, wear a tool belt, stoop down low and stretch in every direction. All these activities will bring such physical benefits as; muscle stretching and building, calorie burning and cardio exercise. Mentally, you're going to feel good that your house looks good and it will feel wonderful tell everyone you did it yourself.

You could also take advantage of such chores as:

*Painting Your Shed
*Painting Your Fence
*Painting Your Bedroom
*Painting Your Living Room
*Painting Your Home Office
*Painting Your Den and Garage
*Painting Your Kitchen and Bathroom

The best inside workout while usually come from painting ceilings. Just make sure to take a break every once in a while when painting ceilings, as looking up for so long can make you feel a little dizzy.

Doing The Laundry

You wouldn't think so, but folding your laundry is a great workout. It's not overly taxing and it helps to build fine motor skills. It's also a relaxing chore and easy chore. Chores like these are great, because in order to maintain a healthy weight, we need stress free exercises as much as we need strenuous ones.

When you do your laundry, you can meditate at the same time, which can help improve concentration and mood. You also exercise the fine muscles in your hands, wrists, arms and fingers. Matching like colors, folding and feeling soft clean fabrics is also very aesthetically pleasing, which will bring more mood-boosting serotonin to your brain.

Walk That Dog!

Walking your family canine is a chore/exercise like no other. It is similar to walking or jogging, but adds in the benefits of resistance and motivation. That's right, you're dog can help to be a great weight lose coach! They are always eager to move as quickly as possible and to walk for as long as you can stand.

You can take advantage of this by walking your dog 2 or 3 more times then you normally would, or walking them for an extra 45 minutes for each walk you take. Up the ante by jogging with them or hiking through a hilly trail.

Where the Sun Don't Shine

How often do you clean behind the refrigerator, washer, dryer, dishwasher or stove?

How often do you clean under the couch, bed, recliner or entertainment center?

If you're the average person, you don't do these chores very often. Though you probably should. Bacteria, molds, allergins, fleas and dead skin can build up underneath these furnishings and leave you feeling not so good. You also extend the life of all your appliances.

Little known fact: Your refrigerator warranty is void if you don't vacuum off the coils every 2 to 3 months.

So more than just burning those calories from moving around heavy appliaces, you also get the added benefits of cleaner air and less germs in your home, and you save money because you're appliances last longer.

Moving Things Around

Another great chore-workout you can do, is rearranging the rooms in your home. I find that it's best done every 2 to 3 months, and very easy to get into the habit of doing consistently.

If you do this chore on your own, you're going to reap the most benefits exercise wise. Though you'll want to think logically and not try to overdue it on any really heavy objects that really need two people to move.

The more often you move around items like mattresses, futons, couches, heavy recliners, tables; the more physical benefits you gain. Your mind and mood will thank you as well, as you are less likely to feel stagnant and stale in your own home.


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    • Ddraigcoch profile image

      Emma 6 years ago from UK

      This is the only way I get time to lose weight by exercising. I do more cleaning.

    • John Andrew profile image

      John Andrew 6 years ago from Albany, NY

      Great hub!! Voted up! Def some great tips on here, thank you for sharing!

    • BizGenGirl profile image

      Bema Self 6 years ago from Seattle

      You know, I'm surprised they haven't invented an affordable ironing appliance yet. Like something where you could just lay a shirt, pants or skirt on something and it would pull it through and be completely ironed and dry when it makes it through the other side, lol.

      Don't forget though, that iron probably weighs between 3 and 5 lbs, so at least you're preventing wrist problems when you iron, he he he =)

    • Truckstop Sally profile image

      Truckstop Sally 6 years ago

      Great ideas! My son came home from college last night, so I spent hours and hours cleaning this weekend anticipating his arrival. (He is a neat frek.) Vaccuming, sweeping, dusting, scrubbing . . . they all are super ways to exercise. If I could just perform some magic and have the ironing done -- that would be great!

    • BizGenGirl profile image

      Bema Self 6 years ago from Seattle

      Thanks Chase! I really owe this to my grandpa (RIP), we inherited his home and it's quiet a calorie burn to keep up with it, even without extra activities. lol. =)

    • chasemillis profile image

      chasemillis 6 years ago

      Great Hub!! This way we'll be killing 2 birds with one stone! Goodbye chores and hello six-pack :) Great suggestions!