Photos courtesy of Ecover
I’ve done promotional work for Ecover here on The 21st Century Housewife before, and I use their products in my own home, but I have to admit that when they contacted me about Cleanercise, I had my doubts. Seriously, wasn’t this just another gimmick? Fronted by Frankie, one of the professional ice skaters in Dancing on Ice, Cleanercise promises to ‘help boost happy hormones, tone wobby bits and put a smile on faces across the nation’. All this while I’m doing one of my least favourite jobs – cleaning. I wasn’t so sure.
However the more I read, the more it made sense. Did you know that energetic mopping can burn up to 300 calories in an hour? Even general cleaning can burn up to 250 calories if done with a bit of enthusiasm. Having said that, enthusiasm isn’t really what I tend to approach cleaning with most of the time, and I know I’m not alone. That’s why Ecover recommend cranking up some feel good music to help turn your tasks into a mini workout that can help both your health and home sparkle. And by using some of Frankie’s moves, you can turn cleaning into a reasonably effective workout. As Frankie says, “By combining everyday home chores with some simple body toning techniques you can burn calories and give yourself a little boost. Add to that the Feel Good factor that comes from using Ecover’s products which have no chemical nasties and are gentler on you, your family and the environment and you’ve got the perfect Feel Good formula. Small changes like these help you on the road to a healthy and sustainable lifestyle.”
Here are some of Frankie’s ideas to help you turn ordinary household chores into Cleanercise.
Add in some full body twists when mopping side to side, and forward leg lunges when mopping forwards and backwards, and you’ll be working your tummy, legs and arms. Make sure your knee does not go any further forward than your ankle in a lunge to avoid injury.
Work top work out
Clean the work tops with small and fast circular movements and some long over-arm sweeps of the cloth, holding your tummy in as you do so. This can hone core muscles, tighten triceps, shoulders and back. You can use long over-arm sweeps for windows and shower enclosures as well (as shown above). Be sure to hold your tummy and core muscles in!
Wash and glow
While doing the washing up or working at the sink, work your glute muscles with rear leg lifts. Using the sink for balance, raise your leg behind you whilst holding in your stomach. Let your leg and bottom muscles do the hard work. Complete 8 lifts on the right leg, before changing to the left, doing several sets one after the other. I suggest leaving off the skates and facing the sink while doing this exercise to avoid injury to yourself and your kitchen!
You can also work in a few sets of squats here and there, pausing as you hoover or dust to do sets of 8 to 10, or fitting sets in between tasks. Hold your core muscles in to support your lower back while doing squats, and be sure to stick your bottom out behind you, as if you were about to sit in a chair.
Cleanercise can help you stay healthy from the inside, while Ecover products can help care for you and your home on the outside. For more Cleanercise moves and to find out more about Feel Good Cleaning, please click here.
The 21st Century Housewife has not been paid for this post. Any exercise should be performed carefully to avoid injury. Be sure to consult your doctor before beginning any exercise programme.