5 Everyday Activities You Didn't Know Were Exercise

Jul 20th, 2021

Courtesy of The Hartford, Extra Mile Staff

Published: August 6, 2015; Updated: February 22, 2021


The phrase, “burning calories” tends to bring (sometimes unpleasant) visions of the gym to mind, but the truth is, everything we do burns calories. If you’ve ever wondered about how many calories you burn doing your daily chores, check out this list:

1. Ironing Clothes

With 30 minutes of ironing, you could burn about 75 calories. Just be sure calories are the only thing you’re burning.

2. Painting the House

After 3 hours of painting, you’ll have “brushed” off roughly 1,025 calories. At that rate, why stop at just one room?

3. Folding Laundry

Thirty minutes of folding clothes will burn just over 70 calories. According to the EPA, the average American household does 400 loads of laundry per year. That’s a lot of calories to burn.

4. Washing the Car

A quick 20 minutes spent washing the car can burn about 100 calories. Who said neighborhood car washes were just for kids’ fundraisers?

5. Gardening

Two hours of gardening can burn more than 645 calories, and hopefully, you’ll end up with some fresh produce for your table, too. Talk about developing healthy habits!

Although going to the gym, or at least having some structured physical activity, is the most efficient way to burn those extra calories, an active lifestyle full of these and other daily activities isn’t without its benefits.


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