Okay, who would have thought that scrubbing the floors and washing the windows could be the new secret workout? Yep, you heard it right. Cleaning your home doesn’t just make your living space look good—it can actually help you get fit! Let’s dig into how and why this happens.
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The Science Behind It
An Indiana University study found that there is a definite link between a clean home and physical fitness. The study found that individuals who maintained cleaner homes tended to engage in more physical activity compared to those who did not. Now, this raises an interesting chicken-or-egg question: are fit people naturally more inclined to clean, or does cleaning actually help people stay fit? While we might not have the definitive answer, one thing’s clear: a clean home is associated with more physical activity.
The Calorie-Burning Power of Cleaning
Cleaning can be a real workout. Think about it: when you’re vacuuming, you’re pushing and pulling a heavy object (hello, arm and shoulder workout). Cleaning can help you get fit and lose weight. Scrubbing the floors? That’s a great way to work your arms and core. Even tasks like dusting or washing the dishes can burn calories if you do them energetically enough. Plus, because cleaning often involves bending, stretching, and moving around, it can help increase your flexibility and mobility too.
- For a person weighing 175 pounds, a 30-minute vacuuming session can burn approximately 80 calories, while also providing a workout for the upper body, core, and legs.
- An hour spent tidying up can burn close to 238 calories, whereas moving and carrying boxes for the same duration can burn nearly 588 calories.
- If you dust for an hour, you’ll burn around 159 calories. If you’re doing heavier scrubbing, like washing windows, you’ll burn between 318-378 calories per hour.
- Making your bed for 30 minutes can burn around 80 calories. However, given that the task usually takes around 5 minutes, it results in a burn of approximately 13 calories.
- Mopping burns around 318 calories an hour and works your shoulders, triceps, and biceps, as well as your core. Sweeping is a little less intense, and will burn about 159 calories per hour.
- Doing laundry and folding clothes for one hour will burn around 159 calories.
Cleaning Can Cut Your Risk Of Heart Disease and Other Conditions
Beyond the calorie-burning benefits, cleaning your home can also contribute to your overall health in more profound ways. A study conducted by researchers from McMaster University in Canada followed 130,000 people in 17 countries and found that being active for at least 30 minutes a day, whether through gym workouts, walking to work, or household chores, could reduce the risk of heart disease by 20% and the risk of death from any cause by 28%.
Household chores, including cleaning, are a form of physical activity that can contribute to these health benefits. Regular physical activity, such as that involved in cleaning, can help lower blood pressure, reduce cholesterol levels, and enhance mental well-being. This can lead to a reduced risk of conditions such as heart disease, stroke, and depression.
Moreover, cleaning can also contribute to a healthier living environment by reducing allergens and bacteria, which can lead to improved respiratory and immune system health. A clean home can also reduce stress and promote better sleep, both of which have significant impacts on overall health and well-being.
How to Maximize Your Cleaning Workout
Want to get the most out of your cleaning workout? Here are a few tips:
- Make it regular: Try to set aside time each day for cleaning. This way, you’re ensuring you get regular physical activity. A cleaning schedule or checklist can help with this.
- Be energetic: The more effort you put into your cleaning, the more calories you’ll burn. So, scrub those floors with vigor!
- Don’t forget to stretch: Cleaning often involves a lot of bending and reaching, so it’s a good idea to do some basic stretches before you start to prevent any strains or injuries.
- Make it fun: Listen to your favorite music or an engaging audiobook while you clean. It can make the time pass more quickly and make the experience more enjoyable.
So, there you have it: cleaning your home isn’t just about creating a pleasant living space—it’s also a fantastic way to keep fit. Who knew that housework could be so beneficial to your health? Next time you see a dust bunny under the couch, remember: it’s not just a cleaning task—it’s a fitness opportunity!
Check out other health benefits of a clean home here.