Gardening as an Exercise Regimen
With the rise of obesity and a host of other lifestyle-related illnesses, millions of Americans have taken up running, biking, and going to the gym to get in shape. However, there are other, more pleasurable, less boring ways to stay in shape – and gardening is one of them. Although you may think that gardening is a genteel pastime, it does involve a lot of lifting, shifting, and pushing – physical activity that you would be doing at the gym anyway.
One good way to burn those unwanted calories is by choosing to mow the lawn with a push mower, which can burn up to 300 calories or more. Other yard work for garden health, like raking and pruning, can burn close to 200 calories. Even simple garden tasks such as tilling, digging, planting, and weeding can burn up to 200 calories.
To prevent injury however, limit your activities by breaking down your gardening tasks each day into short intervals. Just 10 minutes of moderate activities throughout the day can benefit your health. For instance, rather than weed the entire garden at one time, try doing it for only 10 to 15 minutes. Take a break and go to something else such as raking leaves or turning compost for another 10 to 15 minutes.
Gardening has a positive effect not only on your physical health but mental health as well. Gardening can stimulate all of your senses. The garden is filled with all sorts of sights, sounds, textures, scents, and tastes. It may even stimulate long-forgotten memories. These stimulated senses can easily relieve and reduce unwanted stress associated with everyday life, allowing you a much deserved break from these outside distractions.