How Many Calories Do You Burn with Household Chores?
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How Many Calories Do You Burn with Household Chores?

Those necessary chores around the house do count as exercise! Here's how many calories you burn doing common cleaning jobs.

Does Housework Count as a Workout?

The answer: Yes! There's a reason they call it housework. You can burn serious calories during a marathon cleaning session. Here are a few jobs that work major muscle groups, and how many calories you're burning by completing each task. And because we think a sound mind should go with a strong body, we've included a few easy ways you can make that cardio-cleaning more eco-friendly.


Make It Green
Mopping floors

Shoulders, biceps

112 calories/
30 minutes

Try Method’s new OMop All Floor Starter Kit, which includes a mop, a washable cleaning pad and a nontoxic floor cleaner. $30;

Arms, core

288 calories/
60 minutes

Several brands now offer zero-VOC (volatile organic compound) paints, which are better for the planet. For a wide range of colors, go to


Arms, back

256 calories/
60 minutes

Reuse waste, garden organically, and reduce water consumption with the products available at, and

Cleaning gutters

Shoulders, upper back, arms, legs

320 calories/
60 minutes

Bag the leaves in BioBag’s 100 percent biodegradable and compostable 33 Gallon Lawn & Leaf Bags, made from corn. $5.19;



Originally published in FITNESS magazine, April 2008.