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Burning Calories When Idle

By Edited May 22, 2015 0 1

Burn while you relax

Burning calories is something millions of people search for every single week, but there are ways to supplement your workouts by burning calories during your down time. Being idle doesn't have to be unproductive and this article has some easy tips that can be employed to help you shave off just a few more calories easily.

Ditch the chair, get an exercise ball

Those exercise balls you see all over the gym doesn't have to be just for when you workout. Exercise balls are fantastic for being a replacement for a chair or seat so ditc

Exercise Ball
h them. Chairs and seats are balanced well with legs so there is no effort by your body to balance itself because it's completely relaxed relying on the chair to hold you up. When you sit on an exercise ball all of the stability is gone and you have to completely rely on your body and core to hold yourself up. This means that 100% of the time you are sitting on the fitness ball you are using core and stabilizer muscles to hold yourself up and this obviously burns calories because your body is using energy to hold yourself up. Sitting literally burns calories, who would have guessed? Replace your office or home desk chair with an exercise ball and burn calories while you do what you always have done; only now you are getting a core workout and burning a few calories while you continue to be productive or engage in your usual entertainment

Drink cold water

Everyone who works out knows how important water is for you. Your body requires constant water intake to replenish lost water from sweat and continually release toxins and harmful things from your body when using the bathroom. But something that a lot of people don't know is that cold wat

Drink Cold Water
er can help you burn a good amount of calories throughout the day. Water has zero calories and your body has to work to absorb the water and distribute it, and the fact that the water you drink is cold adds on even more work due to the body having to heat it up. Drinking cold water frequently throughout the day could lead to 50-100 calories burnt a day just for drinking that. It doesn't sound like much, but if you do some math we can burn upwards of 700 calories a week which is almost like a full value meal at McDonalds. Burn more calories by simply drinking cold water and your body will be healthier and happier.

Do an intense HIIT session

Ok so this one may seem like it doesn't fit in this article, but hear me out. When we perform an HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training) activity for 20-30 minutes our bodies go into hyper drive trying to normalize the body's original condition which leads to 24 - 36 hours of increased metabolism and Excess Post-Exercise Oxygen Consumption (EPOC). Because our body wants to be back to normal it works very hard to bring this intense revved up exercise state back down and we end up burning more calories while we sit and relax. Again this isn't going to be much, probably a total of 200 extra calories burnt from this session, but it fits here because after your workout your body is still working hard and burning calories to bring back stability and soundness. So after a hard workout, enjoy the fact that you are still burning more calories when you sit down to watch TV because the body is still revved up and trying to normalize itself.

Stay cooler instead of warmer

This idea is similar to the idea I just posted about drinking cold water to burn calories when idle. The key is that the body needs to be warm and when you cool down the body has to work hard to restore that perfect internal temperature of 98.6 degrees. If you jump in the pool during the hot summer months your body is continually trying it's best to keep your body warm so it's burning calories in an attempt to heat you up. So staying cool frequently will cause your body to always be in a state of work because once your internal temperature is normalized then it just sits idly to maintain it. If it's suddenly dropped then it has to work and bring it back up, so keep cool and burn some extra calories in the meantime.


Laughing does a number of things to our bodies, but one of them that serves the purpose of this article is burn calories! When you laugh your body's heart rate increases and uses more energy, thus we see a calorie expenditure greater

Laugh it up!
than if you weren't laughing. The total amount won't be much, probably about 20-30 calories for laughing 10 minutes a day, but the fact that laughing helps in your fitness journey without exerting additional effort is a plus. Another side benefit of laughter that helps in your calorie burning efforts is the reduction of stress levels. Because stress is known to be a suppressing state for our bodies and can increase weight gain and hurt metabolism the fact that you can laugh it off is a wonderful recipe for success for your fitness goals. Laugh it up and enjoy your life while doing something everyone loves which is laughter.

Other ways

There is a ton of other ways to be idle and burn calories, this is just a sample of examples I could come up with that I employ myself. I notice a big difference just with these few examples both on the scale and how I feel. My posture and core are much stronger because of my exercise ball seat and drinking cold water is refreshing and feels good on the throat. Staying cool after an HIIT session is a recipe for success, and laughing while you do it is just icing on the cake. Do these few activities and it could make a big difference in the long run. Fitness journeys are marathons, not races after all. You will never reach healthy goals quickly, so take your time and enjoy your journey with the aid of these few easy tips when you are experiencing down time.



Apr 30, 2013 6:13pm
Well written, cutting edge information!
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