Despite the fact that most people associate gardening with producing beautiful flowers and delectable fruits and vegetables, few gardeners realize just how much exercise they can get from the activity. It’s possible to get just as much muscle-building workouts (if not more) without actually going to the gym, but it’s also a lot more efficient.
A common misconception is that gardening cannot provide the same level of physical benefit that working out does. Take a moment to think about all the different aspects that go into planting a garden. A lot of work must be done before the seeds can be sown. All of these activities aid in the exercise of nearly all of the muscles in your body.
My brother is an exercise zealot. Calls to his house almost always result in me interrupting a workout session. Exercise has never been something I’ve particularly enjoyed because it seems to put too much stress on my joints and muscles while yielding no immediate benefits. While he enjoys working out, I enjoy gardening almost as much as he does. I spend most of my time outside working on my garden. As far as I know, I’ve never lifted a single dumbbell in my life, yet I’m nearly as muscular as my brother.
You should always take a few minutes to stretch before you venture into your garden. You should do it even if you don’t intend to work out and get some exercise. Gardeners are known to work for long periods of time with their backs bent or hunched. Your back may suffer as a result of this. If you’re spending a long period of time in these positions, you’ll need to take regular breaks to ensure that you don’t injure yourself.
A gardener’s best workouts come from weeding and pruning. Legs get a great workout from the squatting and crouching. If your weeds are particularly hardy, the effort it takes to pull them out of the ground will give your arms a great workout. If you’re serious about your workout, you should alternate arms and positions frequently to evenly distribute the workload throughout your body.
Moving and lifting heavy objects, such as bags and pots, is an obvious way to get some exercise. You’ll have to transport the bags a number of times between the nursery and your residence (to the checkout, to your car, to your garden, and then spreading them out accordingly). Even if you don’t buy bags and pots very often, moving them can be a good workout if you remember to lift with your legs instead of your back.
Grass-mowing is also a great way to get fit. The act of pushing a self-propelled mower through the grass will give you more of a workout than going to the gym for a few hours. As you mow, you’ll need to rely on the strength of your arms, back, and shoulders to keep the mower in front of you. To help propel the mower, your thighs and buttocks will be put to the test. You’ll get a good cardio workout as well as a good all-around muscle workout. Because of the elevated heart rate and exaggerated breathing, it’s an excellent cardiovascular exercise that can also help you shed pounds.
It’s difficult to go wrong with gardening as a weight-loss or fitness aid. Stretch, drink plenty of water, and put on sunscreen if you’re going to be outside for long. You’ll have a great time and become a healthier person if you take the necessary precautions to avoid the few negative effects, such as pulled muscles, dehydration, and sunburn.