What constitutes as exercise?

As a Weight Watchers member, I not only get to log the food I eat, but I also get to log my activity. I use up points for the food I eat, but I gain points with the activities I do, such as walking, running, biking or lifting weights.

The other day, I was looking through all the different activities listed on my eTools for my Weight Watchers site and was kind of amazed at the variety of activities that can count toward activity points – chopping or hauling wood, washing windows, bobsledding, cleaning gutters, climbing up a ladder, farming (cleaning the barn), grooming a horse, hanging wallpaper or storm windows or sheet rock, doing the luge or even ocean sailing. Seriously, some of the activities were kind of weird.

Typically, I have been logging my workouts, my treadmill time and my elliptical time, but did you know I also log points for doing laundry. I typically do my laundry on Sundays – yes, I save it all up for one day. I like doing it this way so that I can get it done in one shot. Well, one day anyway. I can have anywhere from six to ten loads depending on our week. It usually takes me pretty much all day to do, even though I am not working on it the whole time. My laundry is in the basement, so I have to go up and down the stairs each time I put in a new load or take one out of the dryer. I have been logging one hour per week for laundry. This gets me two activity points. And, if I didn’t have a cleaning lady, I could also gain one point for a half hour of vacuuming and one point for a half hour of scrubbing floors. So not worth it to me. I’ll keep my cleaning lady; she does a fantastic job. I can gain points in other ways! : )

I also count points if I go out shopping, especially if I am at the store(s) for a couple of hours. I log it as "Walking, leisurely" and I can get two points for one hour or four points for two hours.

With all the snow we have had these past couple of days, I could have earned three points for shoveling for an hour. I didn’t. We have a snowblower. Maybe next time, though.

When summer comes around again, I will be earning points left and right. For one hour of inline skating (rollerblading), I can earn seven activity points. If I do one hour of moderate biking, I can earn three points and for one hour of fast biking, I can earn seven points. An hour of swimming in a lake will get me three activity points and if I play frisbee for an hour, I can earn two activity points.

Because I know I can gain activity points, I try to move a little more often so that I can earn some kind of points each day. Sometimes I do, sometimes I don’t. If there is anything I do that requires at least a little bit of effort, I will check it out on the activity list to see I can gain points. Sometimes I can; sometimes I can’t. If I can’t, it’s not a big deal. I know I do at least three to four days a week of real activity – as in sweatin’ to the max exercise, that I gain enough points to make me

One activity that is not on the list, however, is sitting on my butt playing on the computer or watching television. Darn. I would earn so many points…just kidding. Not really. I would seriously earn so many points. Too bad. 

Well, I better go earn some real activity points right now. The elliptical is calling my name – 25 minutes earns me three activity points. Hopefully it’s enough to burn off the three homemade chocolate chip cookies I ate while playing on my computer!

One thought on “What constitutes as exercise?

  1. Wow–there are actually some activities I might be already doing! I found it interesting that a friend of ours is a walking mail carrier, 7.5 hours a day of walking, about 7 miles each day. His doctor says he still needs to do more exercise. If that is the case, I’m in serious trouble. 😉


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