No-Sweat Ways to Burn More Calories

If you lived three hundred years ago, you would have no need for the suggestions in this article. Unless you were a king or queen with subjects to serve you hand and foot, you would get enough physical activity just by going about your daily routine.

But in today’s modern world, many people struggle to maintain a normal weight because they are not burning enough calories. We now hunt for food in supermarket aisles, have running water at our command just by turning a knob, and earn a living by typing on a computer keyboard or talking on a phone. It’s getting to the point that working at a desk should be considered hazardous to one’s health.

Time has also become a precious commodity. What time does the average wage earner have to do an exercise program at home or in the gym? Everyone can, however, consciously and purposely find ways everyday to burn more calories without disrupting one’s work and family schedule.

A simple guiding principle in the words of Frank Butterfield of the American Council on Exercise is, “Sitting is better than lying down, standing is better than sitting, and walking is better than standing”.

This was proven in a study that analyzed the daily movements of ten lean and ten obese subjects. The major difference between the two groups was that the obese group sat for 150 minutes more per day than the lean people. This meant that the lean people were burning 350 calories more per day than their fatter peers. That is like doing one hour’s worth of aerobic exercise everyday.

Here are some no-sweat suggestions to burn more calories:

When talking on your cordless phone or cell phone, walk around instead of sitting down. You’ll burn 35 to 50 calories in ten minutes.

If you sit down while you watch TV, you burn 72 calories an hour, but if you do light housework while you are watching, you can burn between 144 to 216 calories.

If you do exercises like abdominal crunches and leg lifts during the commercial breaks, you will tone your muscles and burn about 65 calories in one hour (assuming there are 16 minutes worth of ads in a one-hour TV show).

Instead of parking your car or being dropped in the mall entrance closest to the store you want to go to, try doing the opposite. Enter the mall through the farthest entrance from your target. Even if you just walk at a strolling pace, you will burn 3.5 calories for every additional minute it takes you to get to and from your destination. That may not seem like much, but if you can accumulate an hour’s worth of strolling throughout the day, you can burn an extra 206 calories daily. If you walk at a fast pace, you can increase this to 270 to 360 calories per hour.

By taking the stairs instead of the elevator, you burn 8 calories a minute. If you live in a multi-level house or work in a building, take advantage and use the stairs as often as possible. Not only will you have stronger and firmer leg muscles, you can burn as many calories as doing a 30-minute step aerobics or kickboxing class.

And even if you exercise regularly, a “burn ‘em up active lifestyle is more effective than just exercise alone” to lose weight or maintain your weight, according to nutritionist Gay Riley of NetNutritionist.com.

Riley compared the calorie difference in the lifestyles of a person who worked out but was sedentary the rest of the day and a person who also worked out but was active the rest of the day. In an eight-hour period, the sedentary exerciser burned 914 calories while the active exerciser burned 1,436 calories. The active exerciser burned the additional calories by taking the stairs, walking to do errands, housework, and watched less TV.

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