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Everyday Chores That Make For Good Workouts

Honestly, I like doing laundry - I find it incredibly relaxing - there's a beginning, middle, and an end. Also, I like wearing clean clothes. I love to cook - it makes me feel creative and happy. Also, I like to eat. But I don't like the cleanup. Between you and me, I take an odd pleasure in organizing my diabetes supplies, but I’m not a huge fan of everyday house cleaning/organizing and I need to improve my skills set for both.

Bottom line: I don’t love doing household chores. Unfortunately, I don’t have a butler or a weekly cleaning service, so I don’t have a choice.

How to burn calories by doing chores

The other day while procrastinating before I mopped the kitchen floor, I started researching household chores as a form of working out. Holy crap! Did you know that you can burn anywhere between 150 and 240 calories by sweeping and then mopping your kitchen floor? And that scrubbing your floors burns more calories - which makes sense because you’re moving more and at a faster pace.

Laundry and dishes

A 163-pound female/190 pound male doing laundry can burn up to 148 calories (172 calories if you're a man), in 60 minutes by loading the washer and dryer, followed by folding/hanging and putting away said laundry. Ten minutes of washing dishes burns 26 calories and twenty minutes of ironing burns 50 calories.1

Car washing

Personally, I enjoy participating in outdoor chores - so I continued with my research. According to, a 150-pound person burns 204 calories in 60 minutes when they wash the exterior of their car by hand.1


Heavy gardening, in the form of landscaping, hauling/spreading dirt, and moving heavy rocks burns 400-600 calories per hour. Raking and then bagging leaves burn 350-400 calories per hour. Basic gardening including, digging, planting, and pulling weeds burns 200-400 calories per hour.2


According to's own Jen Picicci, clearing out the clutter in your house not only contributes to a tidier home, but to losing weight and decluttering your mind as well!

All of the above has given me a fresh outlook on household chores and I'm kinda looking forward to completing my Saturday chores!

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