Burn Extra Calories at Home

Need a little extra motivation to do household chores? Feeling too lazy to trim the rose bushes or vacuum the spare bedroom?

Perhaps this statistic will give your motivation a boost. Performing your regular household chores can actually burn more than 50,000 calories in one year.

That's right, housework burns calories. There's a reason why it's called work, after all. In one British study, researchers concluded that the average person walks 22 miles each year by simply cleaning the house. These extra steps translate to calories burned.

Most of us don't  think about the workout we're gaining while performing our daily chores. But, what if we actually started using household chores to our advantage? Imagine how many calories you could work-off if you treated your chores like a super-set of exercises.

Next time you kick-off a marathon cleaning session, think about the muscles behind your movements.

For example:

  • Mopping floors uses your biceps and shoulder muscles
  • Gardening works your arms, back and legs
  • Painting uses your arms and core stabilizers

Torch calories at home with these chores. Keep in mind that you need to increase your pace and continue the activity for as long as possible, without taking a break, if you really want the chore to count as exercise.

Household Chore

Calories Burned Per Hour



Bathing the dog


Mowing the lawn


Washing your car


Doing laundry


Washing dishes




Scrubbing floors


Washing windows


Trimming bushes


Moving around furniture


Of course, performing simple household chores shouldn't displace your workout regimen altogether. We need anywhere from 30 to 60 minutes of active physical exercise on most days of the week. So, unless you plan on cleaning your house–top to bottom–every single day, then you need to get into some type of regular fitness routine.

Still, it's nice to know that the next time you miss your fitness class, you can always wash a few extra dishes at home to keep those excess pounds at bay. 

Judi Sheppard Missett, who turned her love of jazz dance into a worldwide dance exercise phenomenon, founded the Jazzercise dance fitness program in 1969. Today the program boasts more than 7,800 instructors teaching more than 32,000 classes weekly in all 50 states and 32 countries. The workout program, which offers a fusion of jazz dance, resistance training, Pilates, yoga and cardio box movements, has positively affected millions of people. Benefits include increased cardiovascular endurance, strength and flexibility, as well as an overall "feel good" factor.  For more information go to jazzercise.com or call (800) FIT-IS-IT.

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