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Yard Work really is a Workout

Discussion in 'Survival of the Fittest' started by Motomom34, Apr 5, 2016.

  1. Motomom34

    Motomom34 Moderator Moderator Site Supporter++

    Spring fever, desire to clean up the yard has hit. I want to get out clean up and look around to see my progress of turning my yard into a garden of Eden. The lack of activity in the winter is driving me insane. I am active but not as much as I am during the Spring, Summer and Fall. It is a different level of activity. A friend told me to join a gym to get into shape. Why pay to exercise when it is free? You can do it anywhere. I just posted a thread on push mowing as a workout, well all those other chores are good for you also.

    Before going crazy please make sure you are ready for the workout that yard work really is. Some articles say to stretch and warm up first. Also, do not overdo it. We read of people having heart attacks while shoveling snow, well the same applies for yard work. Turning the soil in your garden may seem easy but if you are not in shape or have been idle all winter, work slowly and listen to your body.

    Heavy yard work is a great way to add variation to your regular exercise program, while light gardening can be great for exercise beginners. If you do yard work as a way to burn calories, take full advantage of what the great outdoors have to offer:

    - Use a push mower instead of a riding tractor. This adds intensity so that you're working harder, elevating that heart rate, and burning more calories.

    -If you are raking up leaves, change the movement and direction to make full use of your muscles. Rake in front of your body to target your shoulders. Rake both right to left and left to right to work both arms evenly. This way, you'll help prevent blisters by avoiding repetitive motions too.

    - If you're using a wheelbarrow to haul yard waste, soil, or mulch, take an extra loop or two around your garden before you set your goods down.

    -When digging, switch back and forth between hands so that you are utilizing both arms.

    - Instead of using a small watering can, heave the heavy hose around the yard with you. You’ll also have to use those muscles to put it away and wind it up when you're done.

    Work Out with Yard Work

    Don’t forget clearing brush, chopping trees also increase your workout. One thing I do to help with my arms is when pushing the wheel barrow I will go forward but also pull it. It helps relieve arm fatigue but still gives my exercise.

    Below is an article that tells of the calories burned while doing homeowner chores throughout the year, please note, it is not just calorie’s burned but the work helps strengthen our muscles and some tasks are a great cardio workout.

    Home Improvement Calorie Burning Workout | Today's Homeowner

    I thought this was an interesting chart. I have many of these hand tools and never thought of what each tool was strengthening.


    Quick chart on those chores we dread are actually good for us:

    Oltymer, GOG, Mountainman and 5 others like this.
  2. TailorMadeHell

    TailorMadeHell Lurking Shadow Creature

    Know your limits and don't lie to yourself about it.
    Drink water even when you think it's cool. Dehydration is a killer.
    Don't mow to the point you get red faced, as that is over exerting yourself.
    Take breaks more often as the weather gets warmer.
    If you start feeling light headed, give it a rest before heat stroke gets you.
    Keep your head covered as this can provide simple shade and protection from Sun's rays.
    As the weather warms, beware of snakes sunning themselves, in bushes or tall grass.
    Beware of spiders around porches or wood piles.

    Those are just some.
    Mountainman and Motomom34 like this.
  3. Bandit99

    Bandit99 Monkey++

    I will gladly take any of those gym rats here for a workout for free - no membership required. Believe me cutting down trees or those that have broken or uprooted (blow downs), limbing them, cutting the trunk into firewood, carry limbs and firewood out of the forest, stacking the wood, burning the limbs...believe me, if you want to burn calories, this is the place to do it. And, this is a every day event at my house. And, then there is the garden...we enlarged it which meant I had to move 6 sq yards of wet top soil by wheelbarrow...really glad that's done.
    Motomom34 likes this.
  4. chimo

    chimo the few, the proud, the jarhead monkey crowd Site Supporter+

    Wow. While I have often thought about how many of the "no-brainer" skills to my parents and grandparents are lost arts today, it never really hit me hard until I found this thread. Yard work is something I've been doing since I was old enough for my Daddy to offload it on to me...I never really thought of it as something that required an instruction manual and tips how to do it without killing yourself.
    Thunder5Ranch likes this.
  5. Tikka

    Tikka Monkey+++

    I have a tall white oak tree I dropped that needs to be split into firewood. I have it cut into 16" pieces and splitting is next. A garden to fence and more to do. 15-20 tomato plants to plant. A garage to finish and more.

    The good news is, I have 5 garlic plants sprouting about 4" high.
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