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How to Burn More Calories Doing Everyday Things


1) PICK UP THE PACE. By simply adding a little more pep to your step when walking around town, cleaning and running errands, you can amp up your calorie burn. For example, city dwellers, you can make a trip to the grocery store a power walk. Make a "cardio trip" of everyday things like walking to your coworker's office instead of sending a message or even just taking more trips up and down the stairs while cleaning. Turn all of your cleaning, work tasks and errands into calorie burning cardio experiences by doing them all faster, and with greater energy.

2) USE YOUR ENTIRE BODY: In addition to doing everyday things faster, try using your entire body, activating as many muscle groups as you can while doing things like vacuuming, putting groceries away, folding laundry, washing dishes etc.. Bend your knees a bit more when lifting and moving heavy objects (like cast iron pots), contract your abdominals and use your glutes more. Every little bit counts, and the larger the muscle group you use, the more calories you will burn.

3) USE A FITNESS TRACKER GADGET: I use a Fitbit to monitor my activity levels; like steps taken, calories burned, miles walked, stairs climbed, and even sleep. This has made me more aware of my daily activity, particularly the time I am NOT officially exercising. The simple act of tracking my "normal everyday" activity motivates me to always challenge myself to do more, and make a game of it. A fitness tracker is a fun and very valuable tool for monitoring, motivating, and challenging your fitness levels.

4) MAKE USE OF IDLE TIME: Sometimes you have no choice but to wait, and wait.. Like sitting in traffic, or at the doctor's office. Well guess what? You can burn calories while you wait! In the car, you can squeeze your glutes and contract your abs, and if you're at a complete standstill you can do half-T lateral raises for your shoulders. If you're seated in a waiting room, no one will really notice your glutes and abs contracting, but you might want to skip the half-T raises ;-).

All of these little "extras" add up throughout the day, the week, the month, and have great benefits in burning those other little extras you may have eaten (shhh, I won't tell!).

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