Saturday, June 25, 2011

Working Out While You Work

Gardening is a matter of your enthusiasm holding up until your back gets used to it.  ~Author Unknown

The last two evenings I've spent shoveling mulch from a huge pile on the driveway into a wheelbarrow. Then the mulch was dumped in the backyard. This morning I will spend the morning spreading the mulch...I'm trying to not get too excited about it:) Also, please try to not be jealous as you think of me sweating away in piles of wood. Seriously. 

Ok, enough of the sarcasm. As I was shoveling yesterday, I began to think of the nature of household chores, and how easy it is to complain about it. We can't avoid the housework (ok...I guess we can avoid it, but not if we want clean, safe, and healthy houses!), but we CAN make it fun. Why make it a miserable time for ourself, our significant other, or our children? 

I got to thinking. What could possibly be remotely "fun" about shoveling mulch? Well, I was complaining in my head about not getting a workout in, and then realized that I could use this as my workout. This immediately shifted my focus. I got into a healthy and safe position, and focused on different muscles as I shoveled. I did yoga and pilates like moves while I was waiting for the mulch to be dumped in the backyard. Did I look a little stupid? Sure. Did I feel better about the time I spent shoveling? Absolutely. I got my heart rate up, and threw a little strength training in there too.

My point is this. You can make healthy choices even while doing your household chores. Better yet. If someone else is there with you, try to make a game out of it. There's no need for the chores to be a waste of time and not fun! Summer is a great time to set a new, healthy pattern for your work, so take the first step today and try to increase health in this area! You'll dread the housework a lot less... 

Do you ever do a workout while doing a daily task or chore? What's your most dreaded chore?


  1. Hi there! I'm happy to find your blog- I'm in the mental health field as well. I work mostly with kids but with the whole family as well. I keep my workouts separate from all other activities- I like to clear my head and relieve stress and working out is how I do my best thinking!

  2. Most dreaded chore? Vaccuuming and cleaning the bathroom. It just grosses me out!