Don’t feel like hitting the gym or lacing up your shoes to go for a run? Strapped for time, and a workout is another chore to check off your list? Or, is it your rest day, but you don’t want to spend all of your waking hours as a couch potato?
Here are six easy ways to expend some calories around the house, while maximizing your time with family or getting a few chores done, too.
Vacuum or mow the lawn
Get your blood pumping as you move throughout the house vacuuming every surface. Or, now that spring is here, pull out the lawnmower and get that grass in shape. An added bonus? Both require some upper body movement—pushing and pulling. Just be sure to switch arms while vacuuming, to work both biceps equally.
Take a hot bath
Popular as a form of self-care, taking a bath may seem a bit indulgent, but did you know that it can burn quite a few calories? In a recent study, taking a 104-degree bath burned roughly 130 calories, equivalent to the calories burned on a 30-minute walk. The hot bath also helped to reduce inflammation and lower blood sugar. We’re never skipping another rest and recovery day!
Let your inner child loose
Tag, hide-and-seek, hop scotch—if you have a toddler or kiddos, skip plopping them in front of the TV or iPad and spend an hour or two running around. Not only is this type of interaction great for their overall development (and a good nap, later), but you’ll burn quite a few calories chasing after your tots. Win-win.
Don’t have kids? Play fetch or tug-of-war with your dog in the backyard. You’ll expend some calories as Fido expends some pent-up energy.
Clean the house
Do the laundry, put the dishes away, clean out your closet, rearrange a room—there are endless ways to get moving around the house. Turn doing the laundry into a workout as you squat down to load dirty clothes into the machine. Bag up items you don’t need anymore and take the heavy bags down the stairs and into the car—there’s your loaded carry—to donate. Or, move some around furniture to refresh your space. (This will definitely help you get a sweat going.) Not only will you get a workout in, but you’ll have a clean house, too!
Play a silly game
Did you know that laughter burns calories? What better—and easier—way is there to spend some family time with a goofy game like Apples to Apples or Watch Ya’ Mouth, have fun and burn a few calories in the process? Answer: Possibly none.
Instead of drinking games, try workout games
Step away from the shot glass—there’s a new game in town. Have a favorite show you’re currently binge-watching? Turn it into a workout game. For example: Love “This is Us”? Every time the phrase “The Big 3” is used, do 10 push-ups. Or whenever someone talks about “The Manny,” do 50 jumping jacks. Watch your favorite shows guilt-free as you get your workout in—all in the comfort of your own home.
Photo credit: Giselleflissak, Thinkstock