What if I told you that when you do housework, you’ll get fitter? And on top of that, it’s as effective as going to the gym.

Think about it. You’re putting in a lot of physical effort when doing household chores. That effort burns calories and gets your body into good shape. Yet, when you don’t possess that mindset of housework at exercise, then your body will respond in kind.

Photo from NPR

Back in 2007, Dr. Ellen Langer and Dr. Alia Crum conducted a study on 84 hotel maids. They were split into two groups. One group (control) was simply watched and told nothing more, while the other group (experimental) was told that what they were doing was equivalent of exercising at a gym.

After 4 weeks, the group that was informed that what they did was exercise, had a drop in weight, blood pressure, body fat, waist-to-hip ratio and body mass index. The other group had no change at all. There was no behavior change in either group.

I would surmise that the experimental group did have mindset shift and that helped to change what they thought about themselves and their activity. There may have been lower levels of cortisol (stress hormones) that helped them to reduce inflammation and to lose fat. What we think and believe can have a profound affect on our lives and profound effect on our bodies.

How many times have you had a thought it affected how you feel? Heck, what about how you were able to shift your body and it affect your thoughts? It works both ways.

The important thing is that you look at your daily activities and rethink them. If you’re doing household chores, might they simply be physical movement much like going to a gym? Going further, if you’re gardening, the outdoor activity will certainly burn off your body fat and provide Vitamin D from the sun.

I would suggest that you journal your day and compare it with going to the gym. You just may be surprised at what you do, especially if you have children at home. That alone will keep you busy.

Now is the time to get to your home-based workout…

Reference:

Crum, Alia J., and Ellen J. Langer. 2007. Mind-set matters:
Exercise and the placebo effect. Psychological Science 18, no. 2:
165-171 Retrieved from http://nrs.harvard.edu/urn-3:HUL.InstRepos:3196007 on April 9, 2017

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