Melting Away: Easy Ways to Lose Weight with Everyday Activities
Easy Ways to Lose Weight with Everyday Activities
Everyday activities can provide easy ways to lose weight because you don’t have to schedule time in your day to perform them. And since you do them constantly, you’ll increase the calories you use up and eventually lose more pounds. The general principle to remember is to increase movement and make things harder to do. So, instead of riding, you run or walk. Instead of sitting, you stand. And instead of setting things down or rolling them along, you carry them.
Easy Ways to Lose Weight at Home
Do as many of your sit-down chores as possible standing up. For example, paying bills, schoolwork, painting your nails, sewing and building models. Do the same for recreational activities such as reading, playing computer games or watching TV. You may need to get a stand-up desk to facilitate such activities. A standup desk, or waist-high counter or shelf can make this more convenient.
When you’re watching TV and a commercial comes on, jump rope, do sit ups, run in place or do other calisthenics.
Do your gardening with manual rather than automatic equipment. Use a push mower instead of a gasoline-powered mower. Use a rake and a broom, instead of a blower to push around leaves. You’ll not only be using up more calories, you’ll be reducing noise pollution and minimizing energy use.
Pay yourself to exercise. For every 20 minutes of vigorous physical activity that you do, put an amount of money in a jar. If you happen to miss an activity session, remove money from the jar. See how much you have at the end of the month and buy yourself a reward with it.
- Calories burned in 30 minutes of leisure and routine activities - Harvard Health Publications
Check out Harvard University's list of calorie use for everyday activities as well as for exercise.
Easy Ways to Lose Weight at the Office
Skip the elevators and take the stairs up to your office and then back down again when you leave for lunch, errands or to go home. To use extra calories when you first arrive, climb to the top of the building before going back down to your office. Do the same when you finally leave. Stair climbing is one of the most effective weight loss activities, though it is not necessarily one of the easy ways to lose weight. This effort uses up about seven calories a minute. If it takes you 5 minutes each way, that’s a total of 140 calories per day, 700 calories per five-day workweek, or 2,800 per four-week month.
If you have a lunch hour, spend as little time as you can eating. Then you can use the rest of the time walking or running around your building, or climbing stairs. A slow walk is an easy way to lose weight since it burns about 150 calories in 30 minutes. Jogging for the same amount of time increases the calorie use to 220.
Conduct meetings at work standing up. Not only will this increase calorie use for you and your co-workers, it will make the meetings go faster. Attendees will find ways to use their time efficiently, so they can end the meeting quickly and avoid having to stand.
Easy Ways to Lose Weight Outside the Home
When taking public transportation or waiting at a doctor’s office, stand rather than sit.
Park your car at a spot that is furthest from the entrance of your destination. This is an easy way to lose weight because it forces you to walk a longer distance and use up more calories. As a bonus, you’ll avoid the time- and gas-wasting activity of circling nearby parking spaces to find a spot. Spots far away are typically the last to get filled and are usually empty.
Rather than push a shopping cart around at the grocery store, carry one or two baskets and fill them with your purchases. Carrying around that extra weight uses up more calories as well as builds strength and muscular endurance. If the burden becomes too heavy, put your purchases in a cart, which you can park in a safe corner of the store. Then go find your items. When you pick up something to buy, walk to your cart and drop it off there. Do not move the cart until you’re ready to check out.
In a public park or other recreational area, race the kids or your significant other instead of just walking. You can increase the stakes by having the winner do the other person’s chores. Also, rather than telling the kids to slow down when playing or running around, join them in whatever game they’re playing. They’ll enjoy having mom or dad as a playmate, and you’ll have found a fun and easy way to lose weight.