Forget about the gym, the jogging and the diet – if you want to burn calories, get gardening.
There’s nothing new about that advice, but online shopping discount site NetVoucherCodes.co.uk has now come up with the figures – gardeners can use almost 19,000 calories per year just by doing a bit of weeding, mowing the lawn, digging and watering.
The average gardener spends five-and-a-half hours gardening per week, burning up to 722 calories. Three hours doing regular garden tasks works out roughly equivalent to an hour at the gym.
Over a six-month gardening season, that works out at 18,772 calories per year, equivalent to running seven marathons or eating 69 bars of chocolate.
During a lifetime, the average gardener can expect to burn more than one million calories, equivalent to eating roughly 2,000 beef burgers.
The study was carried out with a group of 100 gardeners who were asked to monitor the amount of time spent doing a series of common gardening tasks over a four-week period.
These included weeding, digging, mowing the lawn, hedge trimming, trimming shrubs and trees, raking, planting shrubs, and using a wheel barrow.
Just doing half-an-hour weeding can burn up to 150 calories, while tasks that handle heavy electrical equipment, such as hedge trimming, will give you a good workout burning 400 calories per hour.
One gardener who took part in the task said: “It is amazing to see how much time I actually spend out in the garden each week during the spring and summer seasons and how long some garden tasks take to do.
“I don’t have much time to go to the gym or do an exercise class each week so it’s good to know that just doing something that I love is giving me a workout too.”
“It is great to see that even some of the simplest of tasks such as using the wheelbarrow and planting shrubs can burn around 300 calories per hour.”
A spokesman from NetVoucherCodes.co.uk said: “Most of us see spending time out in the garden as a leisurely job to do at weekends and during the spring and summer months. However it’s fantastic to see just by spending a day or five hours each week in the garden you can easily burn up to around 700 calories, giving gardeners a good workout too.”