There are other websites that give you the counts for everyday activities (just do a web search). Just remember that regardless of whether Sparks gives you credit or not the ultimate test is whether you see results from it. I've done a lot of housework, chased a lot of kids and walked around tons of store all the while I was putting on my weight. I just have to do more than what I was doing before and eat less of what I was eating before to see the results that I want to see now.
Fitness Minutes: (112,042)
46,222 2/27/09 10:35 A
The reason I would not get in the habit using house cleaning as a cardio activity is that the term is quite vague. Heavy cleaning for one person may be a light cleaning for another and vice versa. In order for an activity to be counted as cardio you must sustain an increase in heart rate that is related to an increase in oxygen consumption being delivered to the skeletal muscles over a period of time.
This does not mean you are not burning calories, but for most people they do not maintain an elevated heart rate. For me, I count this type of activity as active daily living. They do count and believe it or not most people burn more calories doing these types of activities than they do their cardio. So don't feel you aren't getting any benefit, but also know that you still need to do your cardio, even on house cleaning days.
However, snow shoveling is not the same. This activity incorporates the use of the large muscles in the body which elevates the heart rate and the need of oxygen to the muscles. This is one of the toughest cardio workouts most of us can do.
I think whether or not you count cleaning depends on your goals. Are you simply trying to stay active or do you want a coordinated plan to build muscle, burn calories and increase your heart function?
Picking up toys and scraping cobwebs from the ceiling is like touching your toes and overhead reaches in aerobics but when I clean I'm not in continuous motion. I'll clean for a bit then contemplate what to do next. I'll vacuum for a while then slow down to move some papers. It's not continuous so I for calorie burning I only count about half the time I spend cleaning as actual movement.
As I understand it, to get a solid cardio workout you need to raise your heart rate and keep it elevated for a period of time (10-30 minutes, depending on who you ask). So cleaning will burn calories but unless you find yourself breathing heavily and sweating the entire time you clean, you probably aren't getting a consistent cardio workout.
So I count time I spend cleaning but I still try to do a focused cardio workout at least 3 times a week, along with strength training.
okay so i have three kids and a saint bernard. my daily cleaning goes 8:00 am to around noon. i start in the kitchen, dishes, counters, sweep everyday, mop every other, living room, pick up toys, sweep under furniture (like i said i got three kidsand a dog that sheds his own weight in hair), dust, sweep, mop every other, bedrooms, pick up toys, make beds, vacuum every other, bathrooms-i clean the kids every other except toilets everyday, mine every couple, but i mop and sweep them like all the others, clean out the fridge 2 times a week, 2 loads of laundry a day. Is that considered heavy cleaning. its normal to me but my mom says i am a copulsive cleaner. i dont know how i would rate something like that. i put in heavy cleaning for 4 hours and it told me that i burnt this exuberant amount of calories. i almost fell off my chair. What do you guys think? sommer
Edited by: SOMMER130 at: 2/27/2009 (09:28)
2/26/09 8:49 P
remember, it says heavy cleaning. I don't do anything I consider heavy very often.
Shoveling snow, is definitely work.
Fitness Minutes: (530)
65 2/26/09 7:14 P
if i'm cleaning or running errands all day, i don't bother with the gym. too much is too much.
I think so, but I would miss my cardio workouts. I really do miss working out even though I've only been trying to do it for less than two weeks. On days when I can't, I feel like I'm missing something.
I notice that when you chart your cardio exercise on sparkpeople that it allows you to count time spent doing shoveling snow, or heavy cleaning. Yesterday and today I spent at least an hour doing these 2 activites and burned more calories than going for a 20 minute jog on my other cardio days. Does this mean that I don't have to do my 20 minute job today?
Could I conceivably lose weight if I just scrubbed floors and shovelled snow for an hour a day?