Do you have a list of home improvement projects and no time for the gym? You’re in luck — you may be able to replace your workouts with renovations since all that movement counts as exercise.
Are Renovations Similar To Exercise?
While installing new laminate isn’t the same as running a mile, they have similarities. For example, a person weighing 155 pounds burns 176 calories painting and 252 calories carrying boxes — but only 108 weightlifting. That means you might even get a better workout in by doing home renovations! Plus, it’s much better to end up with a newly renovated living space rather than sweaty gym clothes.
How Can Home Renovations Replace Your Workouts?
Different types of renovations — much like exercises — will work out various parts of your body, so keep that in mind when deciding on your home improvement plan.
Here’s how renovations can replace your workouts:
- Stretching – Stretching might not seem like a workout, but people invented yoga because it’s such great exercise. Painting, installing fixtures and moving furniture around will stretch you since you’ll be contorting your body.
- Lifting – Whether you’re holding power tools or hauling out your old carpets, most home improvement projects require lifting. Holding, moving or picking up heavy objects count as a workout.
- Squatting – Getting low may not be easy on the knees, but it’ll do wonders for your glutes. Plenty of renovations will have you squatting to pick something up or put items down. For example, you’ll probably squat while laying tile in a bathroom.
- Climbing – You likely won’t climb a lot unless you’re doing a renovation that requires you to be high up. For example, getting on the roof to install new shingles requires a ladder. It works your arms since you’re essentially lifting your body weight when you climb.
There are plenty of renovations to choose from if you want to replace your workouts. You could install new bathroom fixtures or rip up carpeting to expose beautiful hardwood floors. Many are also cheaper than a gym membership, so it’s well worth it.
For example, consider pipe insulation. You may spend up to $15 for materials and nothing on labor because you do everything yourself. It’s also an eco-friendly and easy fix. Home improvement projects won’t exercise you as straightforwardly as a treadmill or dumbells will, but you still can get a good workout in.
What Should You Know Before Starting?
Like traditional exercise, you’ll have to take care of yourself while renovating. All that moving and lifting can wear you down if you’re not careful, so listen to your body and recognize the signs that you need to take a break. You’ll also have to consider proper safety measures since some renovations kick up dust that’s harmful to breathe in.
Drink lots of water while you work and take breaks to cool off. Think of it like stopping for a breather after a set of pushups — you wouldn’t do your whole workout without stopping, so why push yourself to keep going during renovations?
You should also know what you’re getting yourself into before you begin. While you can do many renovations without outside help, it’s a safer bet to do your research. For example, low-quality paint causes cracks in your walls over time. As fun as it is to replace your workouts with home renovations, you probably don’t want to start over again because you used the wrong paint.
Additionally, practicing the correct form when stretching, squatting and lifting can protect you from injury and soreness. Keep your feet shoulder-width apart, bend at your knees and don’t twist as you pick up anything heavy to protect your back and knees. Self-care and a proper form are just as important as your exercise.
Should You Choose Renovations Or The Gym?
While working out is great, renovations provide similar benefits for yourself and breathe some life into your home. You’ll have upfront costs for materials, but a gym membership would be a recurring cost, so it’s relatively balanced. You can also make minor fixes to create a more sustainable living space, positively impacting the environment.
You can lift weights and do cardio daily or get a bit done on your most recent project. Both have their own benefits, so it’s up to you if you want to put down that dumbbell and pick up a hammer and nails.
Home Renovations Can Replace Your Workouts
Improving your living space takes work, but it’ll pay off when all that lifting and squatting start toning your muscles. Switching things up and replacing your workouts with home renovations is an excellent choice if you want a tangible result after putting in work — other than your chiseled physique.
Jane is an environmental writer and the founder and editor-in-chief of Environment.co where she covers sustainability and eco-friendly living.