Cleaning house! (and burning calories)

Turns out WSU is waaaay cooler than I thought they were! I am enjoying a second snow day!

While that’s bad news for my classes and my students, it is good news for my house! I have spent the past hour cleaning all sorts of puppy fuzz, puppy dirt and puppy toys from my floors. The kitchen is clean, as well as the bathroom, and, as soon as Husband wakes up, I am going to vacuum!

For a 139 pound woman (me), I burned 183 calories per every hour of housework! Hilarious! Check out this site for more!

I also discovered that I burned…

  • 5 calories for spending two minutes brushing my teeth
  • 12 calories while washing the dishes for five minutes
  • 47 calories while spending 10 minutes mopping
  • 85 calories for spending a total of 10 minutes walking up and down my stairs
  • 234 calories for spending two hours studying (not even moving!)
  • 525 calories while sleeping for nine hours last night

My body is a-workin’ even when it’s not doing much work! Of course, this is how much I burn when I do actual work.

  • Jogging for 30 minutes: 221 calories
  • Lifting weights for 30 minutes: 108 calories

How fun!

Since it’s still pretty disgusting outside -not really snowing anymore, but snow drifts covering every square inch of road -I have decided to stay home instead of driving to the gym to workout.

What shall I do?

Well, I know today is my cardio and weight-training day, so I think I will do an Insanity workout just for fun and to keep myself on track. The good thing about Insanity is how it makes use of interval training.

According to, interval training burns more fat.

When you interval train, you perform short bursts of intense exercise, and then take a longer period to recover. (Unless, of course, you created Insanity; then you perform long intervals of intense exercise, and then take short periods to recover, which SUCKS.)

Luckily, you can do the normal interval training with any form of exercise, such as swimming or running, but you need to perform exercises that involve a lot of body movements. Interval training is not for static squats and lunges, kids. (And the more you move, the more you burn and build up your metabolism.)

When you alternate between easy and intense exertion, your body is able to process lactic acid build-up reducing fatigue. You are able to burn calories and fat faster compared to less intense, longer exercise.

Also, when consistently training at those levels (like in Insanity workouts) using the ATP-PCr (creatine phosphate stores) and glycolytic (glycogen, stored glucose) systems, you increase your capacity to work harder.

(I think this is why cross-country runners do fartleks. Don’t believe that’s a real thing? Look it up. It’s hilarious.)

The key to interval training is exercising at high intensities for at least 10 seconds, but no more than three minutes. (Insanity requires you to work out at the highest intensity for exactly three minutes; I think it’s cheating.)

Unfortunately, you can’t just do interval training every day because you’ll run the risk of overtraining your body, which is a total no-no. You need to have at least two days between high-intensity interval sessions.

Here is a 10-Minute Interval Workout
Dynamic Stretching
Always perform some sort of stretch before performing any workout. Even if you warm up first, stretch before actually jumping into the interval. suggests performing stretches like deep knee bends, leg swings, lateral lunges, arm crossovers, trunk twists and high knees (which I recall from middle school track and high school cross-country). Also, bad news, this does not count into your 10 minutes.

Squat Thrusts
Stand with feet hip distance apart and arms at sides. Lower into a deep squat and place your hands on the floor. Quickly kick your legs back behind your body into plank position. Hop feet forward, stand and repeat. (In Insanity, these are called level one drills; and Red makes Eric do them in That 70’s Show.) To increase the challenge, because you so want to, hold dumbbells while you do them or perform a pushup after plank position.

Mountain Climbers
Also a member of the Insanity interval routine, mountain climbers work almost every part of your body and cause your heart rate to rise quickly. Position your body on the floor as if you were on a track and about to do a sprint. Keep arms fully extended and quickly shift your foot positing by hopping into the air and landing with changed legs. Keep your hips as low as possible. (I don’t actually remember what Insanity trainer Shaun T. calls these, but they are usually combined with level one drills.)

Prisoner Squats with Twists
Interlace your fingers behind your head and space your feet about shoulder-width apart. Keep your back straight, lower yourself into a squat, and then steadily rise back up and twist your torso to the right side as far as possible. Lower down and repeat to the left.

Crunch Sit-Ups
Raise shoulders and legs from the floor, balancing on your butt and back. Move your torso forward as you pull your knees into your chest. Hold, and then move back to start. Alternate back and forth in a steady motion.

Alternating Arm and Leg Raises
Get onto all fours with knees straight down from hips and hands straight down from shoulders. Raise your right arms in front of your body as you extend your left leg behind your body. Hold, lower and repeat with opposite arm and leg. This is a fan favorite of almost every exercise form, from yoga to Insanity.

Timing: Have a clock nearby for quick reference. Don’t buy a cheap Wal-Mart stopwatch. I own one. It is crap. Clocks are awesome. Perform each exercise for 30 seconds, and then take a 30-second break. Once you have finished the series, rest 30 seconds and repeat the sequence once more (unless you’ve been doing yoga too long and are forced to do it three times; it’s weird for me not to do something three times now).

Go here to see the Fitness Plan for 2011 from WomensHealthMagazine, which includes fat-blasting interval workouts. (Or buy Insanity and get your INSANE on! We all know I’m not that big a fan…)

2 thoughts on “Cleaning house! (and burning calories)

  1. dana @ my little celebration

    Great post! Lot’s of good information you’ve researched. I looked up fartleks because it made me laugh when I read it, and now I believe you that it’s a real thing. Because I didn’t before.

    Maybe I’ll do fartleks tomorrow for my workout (I’m grinning quietly to myself as I type this.) Heee heee.


    • skinnyshae

      I used to have to do them when I ran cross country in high school and I giggled every time! “Now I’m doing a fartlek!” Hilarious!!!!!!

      Good luck with your fartleking! :)


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