There are many perfectly honourable reasons not to join a gym. Perhaps paying 500 USD a year to attend just the one aerobics class seems poor value in these straitened times. Perhaps you are making a protest against the tyrannical orthodoxies of body fascism. Or maybe you have a busy enough family life and don’t have time to pump iron every weekend.

Whatever your motives, congratulations are in order because you are now in the vanguard of the latest thinking on physical well-being, best summarised as: gyms won’t fix it.

How to burn calories without really trying

“The problem with gyms is that they compartmentalise physical activity,” says Andrew Hamilton, editor of Peak Sporting Performance magazine. “You become locked into the idea that you need a special place and special equipment to exercise when the truth is that gyms only exist because we aren’t leading our lives properly.”

An hour-long gym session of average intensity burns 400-500 calories. The expert advice is that it shouldn’t be too hard to burn those calories while getting all the other health benefits of a workout just from putting a little extra vigour into everyday activities. So let the world be your gym and with a few minor adjustments your weekends can be turned into a life-enhancing health fest.

Firstly, have a little Saturday lie-in. You probably went to bed later than usual last night, but sleep is a vitally important aspect of health. You can only reap the full benefits of your new regime if your body is rested.

Getting to the gym 3 times a week requires you to give up a minimum of 3 hours of your time. In a whole week, that is only tiny amount but the reality is that even this can seem impossible to achieve. Everyday life is very demanding and can get in the way. So if you are having one of those weeks or months where you don’t seem to have enough hours in your day to spare for the gym, this is for you. A handy list of ways to burn the calories whilst just living your life (gym free).

Active persons Guide
Brush teeth – 2 mins 16 cals
Sweep floors – 20 mins 63 cals
Moderate walk – 30 mins 150 cals
Wash the car – 30 mins 171 cals
Play with kids – 30 mins 100 cals
Clearing garden – 15 mins 126 cals
Mowing lawn – 15 mins 60 cals
Raking 20 mins – 98 cals

TOTAL 784 calories = one hard gym session

Lazy persons Guide
Washing Dishes – 2 mins 6 cals
Watching TV – 4 hrs 300 cals
Kissing – 20 mins 26 cals
Playing cards 1 hr- 131 cals

So now you know – you need to watch at least 5 episodes of Lost on TV just to burn off one egg McMuffin.

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