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Calories Burned During Daily Activities

It is a well-known fact that exercising is very important for maintaining a healthy weight. In case you are overweight it is important for you to spend at least 40 to 60 minutes exercising each day. Some of the most effective exercises for burning calories and losing weight include aerobic or cardio exercises such as walking, skipping, jogging, cycling, swimming and running. However, did you know that you are burning calories in everyday activities too?

You are constantly burning calories in your daily routine; of course, the total number of calories you burn during the day depends upon the lifestyle you lead as well as the different physical activities that you engage in.

Given below is a list of calories burned during daily activities, if you perform the same activity for around half an hour at a stretch:

  • Brushing your teeth: 86 calories
  • Carrying an infant: 126 calories
  • Cleaning the sewers or gutters: 180 calories
  • Climbing up the stairs: 274 calories
  • Cooking food:     90 calories
  • Cutting or sewing cloth (tailoring): 90 calories
  • Dancing (vigorous forms of dancing): 202 calories
  • Driving: 72 calories
  • Dusting the house: 99 calories
  • Farming: 162 calories
  • Feeding the livestock: 162 calories
  • Fencing: 202 calories
  • Fishing: 103 calories
  • Gardening: 184 calories
  • Going shopping: 81 calories
  • Calories burned golfing (while carrying golf clubs): 207 calories
  • Ironing clothes: 77 calories
  • Loading or unloading luggage into a car: 108 calories
  • Looking after an elderly or disabled person: 144 calories
  • Making a hairstyle: 90 calories
  • Mopping the floor: 153 calories
  • Mowing the lawn (pushing the mower): 148 calories
  • Packing a suitcase: 72 calories
  • Painting the walls: 171 calories
  • Playing a game of cards: 54 calories
  • Playing board games: 54 calories
  • Playing the guitar: 108 calories
  • Playing the piano: 95 calories
  • Playing with the Frisbee: 103 calories
  • Pushing a stroller with a baby in it: 90 calories
  • Putting away the groceries: 90 calories
  • Raking the lawn: 135 calories
  • Reading a book: 36 calories
  • Rearranging furniture around the house: 225 calories
  • Running or playing with children: 135 calories
  • Shoveling snow off the side walk: 207 calories
  • Sitting or resting: 36 calories
  • Skateboarding: 171 calories
  • Sleeping: 32 calories
  • Standing still: 40 calories
  • Studying: 63 calories
  • Taking a shower: 144 calories
  • Talking over the phone: 36 calories
  • Traveling or going on a tour: 72 calories
  • Walking or strolling in the park: 135 calories
  • Washing dishes: 77 calories
  • Washing the car: 153 calories
  • Weaving cloth: 126 calories
  • Writing: 36 calories

Also see calories burned sitting

You probably engage in at least some of these household chores each day, no matter how busy you are with your work.

Studies show that on average, a person weighing 150 pounds can burn anywhere between 200 and 240 calories in an hour. You could increase the number of calories you burn during the day, by following the steps given below:

  • Stretch your arms for a few minutes as soon as you wake up, even before you get out of bed.
  • While brushing your teeth, stand on one foot, for around 30 seconds or so, before switching over to the next. Continue this for as long as you brush your teeth, to burn an extra 10 calories or so. This will also have a positive effect on your balancing ability.
  • While preparing coffee, instead of waiting for it, use the counter to practice a few leg lifts. This will help you burn an additional 10 calories or so, while you wait for your coffee.
  • While talking on the phone, walk around the room if you can. You can burn another 50 calories or so in the day, depending upon how much time you spend talking on the phone.
  • At work, take the stairs instead of the elevators, as often as possible. Climbing stairs is one of the best activities for burning calories. More information on calories burnt at work
  • Park as far away from your work place as you possibly can. Try to walk for at least 15 minutes or so each way, so that you fit in your daily cardio exercise.
The number of calories burnt in daily activities may vary a bit from person to person, as it is dependent on many factors. The amount of calories your body burns depends on your age, metabolism, body type and your current body weight. The calories burnt doing a normal daily activity mentioned above apply to an average person who weighs around 150 pounds or so. However, the calories burned in an everyday activity in your case may be higher or lower, depending upon your body weight. People who have more body mass end up burning more calories, as compared to those who are thinner.

Although your body burns a lot of calories during the day through everyday household chores, it is important for you to work out for at least half an hour or so each day. Make it a point to engage in some form of exercise like walking, running, jogging, swimming or cycling for around 30 to 60 minutes a day, at least 5 times a week. The calories burned during daily activities should not be regarded as a substitute for a workout routine.
Submitted on January 16, 2014