Gardening: Burning Calories by the Numbers

Most people think of gardening as a relaxing activity – and it is, but that doesn’t mean you can’t get a bit of exercise in as well. Gardening involves a lot of lifting, pulling, stretching, and bending – which altogether makes up a pretty varied and well-rounded exercise regimen. But how many calories do you burn up exactly with each garden chore? Here is a simple guide:

Gardening can burn up to 300 calories with an hour of moderately strenuous gardening activities like cultivating or using a spade.

Raking is a good activity but burns less calories that using a cultivator or a spade. On the upside, it provides some exercise for your legs, back, and arms as well. The reason is that the ground is providing resistance and your muscles work hard to move the earth.

Using a lawn mower is also an excellent workout. Get out the push mower. You’ll blast 199 calories in 30 minutes. Compare this to the 51 calories burned during 30 minutes of using the riding lawn mower, and a little pushing and pulling is well worth your effort.

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Do you want to start a garden, or do you have new flowers or a tree to plant? Get digging! Digging burns 106 calories in 20 minutes.

Planting transplants including trees, shrubs, etc. work out to 300 calories on average. This activity will also provide your arms some exercise. If you’re planting trees and shrubs, you can expect to be digging holes, so that translates to a pretty decent upper body workout.

Weeding is a necessary chore in the garden. Some people hate to weed, but if you consider that you’re exercising while you weed, you can think of as replacing a trip to the gym. Weeding burns as least as many calories as mowing the lawn with a power mower.