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CHRISTINASP Posts: 1,856
10/8/12 11:55 A

Thanks again for your replies!

It was suggested that 'normal activity' doesn't count but I can wonder just what is 'normal'???
Normal for me? Normal for the average person in the western culture? (Because I think the average person doesn't exercise much, at all?).
For most people I know walking for 40 to 60 minutes per day is NOT normal! LOL. Nor is riding the bike for several half hours per week.

I figure I will not count the walks with the dog because they are not very demanding on my body. But the biking I will count. After all, I could take the bus! :)



Keep it simple.
GOPINTOS SparkPoints: (33,098)
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Posts: 6,263
10/7/12 6:54 P

For me, any of those things would be extra activity that I might not do, or do differently, if I was not trying to get in more exercise, so I would include them.

Walking to the mailbox, washing dishes, doing laundry, etc that is what I consider my day to day activities, so I dont count it even though I can do lots of squats and lots of calf raises during those activities but nothing cardio. I let my dog out this morning and I did all kinds of calf raises while standing on my front porch just waiting on her to come back. I dont count those because I do that so often, I forget anyways. But when I go on a big cleaning spree, I count it.

Household activities take on a new life for me sometimes now. Like mowing the yard, I got a push mower. I have to do it every week, it is a weekly routine, but you bet your boots I count it. I work up more sweat than any dvd I have ever done. If I rode for an hour to go see the doctor, you bet I would count it. That is above and beyond normal activity to me because I would just hop in the car.

I also dont add alot of exercise into my tracker. So that keeps my calories on the lower side anyways. For example, I just now took my exercise out to see what it would do and it did not change my daily calories.


This is your journey. Take the wheel and drive!


“Being overweight and out-of-shape is hard. Being lean and in-shape is hard. Choose your hard.”
BLACKDYMOND01 Posts: 865
10/7/12 5:35 P

Very good question...I often wonder the same thing. I know its apart of our daily routine but I believe u do burn calories just not enough.

LIVE LIFE TO THE FULLEST!!!
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DIANAHALLOCK SparkPoints: (31,707)
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10/7/12 4:44 P

No, normal activity is part of being alive.

BUBBLEJ1 Posts: 2,979
10/7/12 4:10 P

So is it only exercise when it is challenging, making you puff and sweat?

Not always...

I am on holiday, and I am using foot power to get everywhere. I walked 5.8km into town on Friday. I kept a good pace up, but I didn't get hot and sweaty like I do when I run. I still tracked it, because as Deb said, if I walked 5k later for exercise I would count it.

I agree that you should only track things that are outside the norm, and that get your heart rate up. If you bike everywhere and you take an easy pace then I would think that is part of your normal routine. If you go somewhere once every 6 months, like a doctors appointment, and you ride longer than usual to get there then I would track that since it is outside your usual routine.

Does that make sense at all?

~Jess~

There are no shortcuts. No magic bullets. No secret spells. What works is hard work, dedication, and a daily dose of chocolate.
CHRISTINASP Posts: 1,856
10/7/12 3:14 P

Thank you all for your insights...

So far I have not counted any household chores or walking the dog as exercise. I do know that if I didn't have the dog I would be much more sedentary. I walk him three times a day, a total of 40 to 60 minutes.
I do tend to count the half hours and hours that I spend on the bike. However I try not to be puffy and sweaty when I visit the doctor in hospital! That'd be embarrassing!

Still it is an hour of moving my body. I do feel more tired later on in the day.
It used to be 'quite something' to visit the doctor and ride the bike for an hour. Now that I take frequent bike rides 'for exercise', it becomes easier to do.

So is it only exercise when it is challenging, making you puff and sweat?

Edited by: CHRISTINASP at: 10/7/2012 (15:15)
Keep it simple.
UNIDENT Posts: 33,498
10/7/12 2:08 P

Depends on you.

Did that thing "feel like exercise"?

Just because you walk the dog half a mile a day doesn't mean that half a mile isn't "exercise". If you didn't have the dog - just went out with an ipod on and hit the pavement "to get some exercise" nobody at all would question tracking it. What difference does the dog make? So the question is - DOES your dog make a difference? Walking my dog is NOT exercise. She's the world's slowest dog, she wants to sniff EVERYTHING, and she is always stopping. It's slower than a casual stroll. But your dog may be more energetic.

As for daily activities? Vacuuming or doing the dishes, that you do routinely, I would probably never count. But if you did a spring clean, sure - that is not an "everyday" activity.

When you ride for an hour to see your doctor - do you keep it up aerobically and arrive hot and sweaty and puffing? If not, maybe this is more of a "commute" than "exercise"? If it "feels like exercise" it's probably doing you some good. If you're wondering "was that exercise?" it probably isn't worth tracking.

Deb, in New Zealand
LUANN_IN_PA Posts: 16,826
10/7/12 2:05 P

"daily activities - do they count as exercise?"

NO, because Spark already factored them in when you calculated your calorie range.

Counting them twice won't help you reach your goals....

�We cannot change the cards we are dealt, just how we play the hand.�
~ Randy Pausch

"There's a difference between interest and commitment. When you're interested in doing something, you do it only when circumstance permit. When you're committed to something, you accept no excuses, only results."
~ Art Turock

"We have a saying in Tibet: If a problem can be solved, there is no use worrying about it. If it can't be solved, worrying will do no good."
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MPLANE37 SparkPoints: (65,234)
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Posts: 2,167
10/7/12 1:18 P

Your daily activities are included in your lifestyle amplification factor of your BMR. You can't include them again, that would be counting them twice.

Also, you would like to acquire exercise as a good habit which will not only help you lose fat, but also maintain your goal weight after reaching that. Would you rather rely on your current daily activities to maintain your goal weight? That would likely not work.

Edited by: MPLANE37 at: 10/7/2012 (13:22)
``Don't break the chain." -Jerry Seinfeld
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EMILY_B2 SparkPoints: (1,726)
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10/7/12 12:58 P

I tackled this question this morning, and ultimately decided...if it is not something I do every day AND can manage to get my heart rate high enough for long enough to qualify as cardio, then yes, I'll count it.

For example, basic house cleaning. There are certainly periods of time where my heart rate briefly elevates, but it's momentary. Unless I'm literally running around the house with the vacuum - which makes it nearly impossible to do a good job cleaning - or frantically cleaning out a closet, it does not raise heart rate enough for 10+ minutes.

Lawn mowing, on the other hand...with a properly-sharpened blade, you can push hard enough, fast enough, to get the heart pumping. So long as it's kept up, I think it does qualify.

Goals:
Quit smoking - 9/12/12...done!
Live Better - in progress!
Lose Weight
...1st mini-goal 20 lbs to 147 - in progress!
...2nd mini-goal 10 lbs to 137 - coming soon!
...3rd mini-goal 5 lbs to 132 - coming soon!
...4th mini-goal 2-7 lbs to final goal - coming soon!
CHRISTINASP Posts: 1,856
10/7/12 12:25 P

Things that you have to do anyway and do not do for the goal of losing weight or getting fit, do they count as exercise?

I wonder about walking the dog? Riding a bike to get groceries? Riding a bike for an hour or so, to see a doctor?

I don't have a car and I do have a dog... so I wonder about these activities.

Keep it simple.
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