Have you ever dreaded the idea of pulling weeds, planting a tree or pushing a mower around the yard?
Just thinking about it makes you sweat? I’m sure the majority of you nod your heads in agreement. What I have to suggest is only take a little change in your mindset and a bit of planning and you can learn to lose weight and get in better shape as you walk in the garden.
For those of you who are already gardeners, you know that gardening is one of the best ways to get exercise because it involves all muscle groups in your body.
As I mentioned earlier, we only have to change the way you think outside of duty. Seeing I also fall into the trap, I just called them duties. Instead, think of them as outdoor exercises designed to improve the condition of your body and help you lose weight.
As with any exercise program, consult your physician before starting. Make sure you are dressed properly and that you stretch before you begin.
If you are not used to exercising in the garden or have been relatively inactive all winter, start slowly. Start by closing, watering and planting seeds.
When you feel stronger you can increase your gardening repertoire to include: pruning, heavy digging, chopping, pushing a loaded wheelbarrow or mowing the lawn. I think you get the idea because the list of outdoor gardening ideas is endless!
Even transporting plants or a bag of grounded soil to the car from the store and then out into the garden is exercise! You can potentially burn up to 300-600 calories per hour depending on your intensity and what gardening exercises you participate in.
You CAN lose weight by having gardening ~ eating less and moving more! The following list shows what a typical 180-pound man will burn in 30 minutes of activity. If you weigh more, you can burn even more calories!
- Watering lawn / garden ~ 61
- Raking ~ 162
- Bagging of leaves ~ 162
- Plant seeds / seedlings ~ 162
- Planting of Trees ~ 182
- Calming ~ 182
- Clearing land ~ 202
- Excavation, shading, machining ~ 202
- Laying of Sod ~ 202
- General gardening ~ 202
- Chopping wood ~ 243
- Gardening with heavy power tools ~ 243
- Lawn mowing the lawn with a mower ~ 243
- Shovel snow ~ 243
- Shovels heavy snow ~ 364 cals
Tips for your success:
1. Don’t do it ~ one or two hours of gardening is plenty, especially when you begin!
2. Do not lift objects that are too heavy for you. If you injure yourself, chances are that you will not be able to continue to exercise and lose weight.
3. Stretch before, during and after gardening. Do not stay on your knees as you weed or plant for a long time ~ get up and move!
4. Exercise in your garden and exercise at least 3-4 times a week.
5. Continue your outdoor exercise routine even after the last flowers have disappeared. Pushing the snow, tearing leaves and splitting wood are good calorie burners that will lead to weight loss!
6. Don’t forget the added benefit of growing your own healthy fruits and vegetables and your yard will look beautiful from all your hard work!
7. Have fun and “Just do it”!
Once you get used to seeing gardening as an excellent way to lose weight and stay in shape, you might never go back to the gym again!