Let’s start with a simple question – Gardening – Is it Exercise?
The simple answer is YES!
There was an article published by the Telegraph a few years ago and it stated that “You can maintain a good level of fitness and burn significant of calories”
The article was appropriately titled “The Garden Workout” and I think it says everything.
With any form of exercise and this is very true with gardening that you get out what you put in both in terms of the fitness and the calories burned but also the visual results whether it be flowers, shrubs, vegetables or the lawn.
However just pottering around will have a lot of benefits and although it won’t have the same impact as the digging, weeding or moving the lawn with a push along mower it is activity which can be very helpful as you get older.
Now what sort of exercise? If you think about it when you’re gardening you’re squatting, lunging, bending over to get those pesky weeds removed, reaching up and extending your shoulders and back to prune or to cut back a tree of a hedge.
One of the mistakes that people make is thinking that they can just go straight in. They do a days gardening without a warm up and stretching afterwards and then wonder why you are feeling sore for 3 or 4 days afterwards!
WebMD states that when gardening you can burn 200-600 calories per hour depending on the intensity of the gardening. Myfitnesspal.com states that you can burn between 180-700 calories in an hour in a gym workout. There ain’t much difference between the 2.
Suprised? You shouldn’t be!
So, if you are wanting to do a lot of work in the garden build up the time and intensity of your gardening. Warm up first by doing some light work. Then when you’re finished stretch off the muscles used and have that hot bath and stretch afterwards. Maybe a cold beer or wine to celebrate your achievements.