Low-intensity cardiovascular exercise is a brilliant way of increasing stamina as well as active recovery. Besides walking, one of the best activities low-intensity you can perform is housework.
Naturally because of this women have a huge advantage over men. So how are we, as men, supposed to keep up? Well don’t worry, because this article features information on how to mimic these activities through certain exercises so we can reap the benefit of girly gains and be left behind by our lucky ladies and their natural abilities no longer.
Luckily some of these can be done at home so you can perform them while your S.O. is engaged the task itself to create an extra bond in your relationship.
Exercise: Lunge with Shoulder Raise
Performing a deep lunge while raising a weight in front of you nicely mimics the forward-and-back strokes used while pushing around a vacuum cleaner. Using a light weight and high rep count will elevate your heart rate, while giving your glutes and shoulders a great workout.
To make this exercise even more functional – raise the weight with a single arm, switching each time you switch your leading leg.
Carrying A Baby
Exercise: Atlas Stone Lifts
As far as the knowledge of this writer goes, the atlas stone lift perfectly recreates the form of lifting and carrying a newborn child. This exercise will build powerful leg, lower back, core, and most importantly glute strength! As any woman will surely tell you, babies are fragile and precious things, but even something as light as a tiny human can feel heavy when carried all day, so imagine the strength benefits women are reaping without you even realising they’re training.
You can add to this exercise by aiming to lift the atlas stone onto a high shelf, similar to the way ladies lift their babies on and off changing shelves. Interesting fact: most female changing rooms actually contain a shelf like this within! Don’t get left behind.
Exercise: Single Arm Overhead Press
Here’s a nice and simple one. When dusting, women will spend most of the time with their arm overhead, reaching for corners and tops of doorframes. Holding you arms above your head for extended periods of time can be fatiguing but of course using a light weight and very high rep count you can build great endurance. Most women, being the way they are, will unfortunately tend to favour using one arm for a lot longer than the other. Get ahead of the game by switching arms regularly.
Exercise: Wrist Curls/Rotations
Doing the dishes is a brilliant way of building up forearm strength through constant varied movements and different sized & shaped items to wash up. Men too can make the most of this great movement by taking a seat on a bench (or anywhere), holding a dumbbell in each hand with palms facing up, and simply rotating the wrists until the palms face down, and repeating until mild fatigue.
Carrying The Shopping
Exercise: Farmer’s Walks
Here’s another one that’s easy to copy. Women have in innate ability, as well as unique hand design, which enables them to carry plastic bags for long periods of time with minimal stress and without them digging in.
Men, having bigger hands, can get the very same grip and core benefits by picking up two heavy dumbbells, holding them with arms straight, and walking them about 5-10 metres (approximately the length of a driveway).
Pushing A Trolley/Pram
Exercise: Sled Pushes
This is a two-for-one. Women routinely get a great calf, quad, and (of course) glute workout from pushing these medium-to-heavy weighted objects. Get the same great feeling by stacking a few weight plates onto a sled and pushing it about 5-10 metres (approximately the length of a supermarket aisle). You’ll see why women enjoy this type of activity in no time!
So as it’s clear to see, in our modern society women have a distinct advantage of there being certain activities which were designed for them, or that they were designed for themselves. Add these exercises into your regular routine and discuss with your wife, girlfriend, or female friends – they will be more than happy to offer advice, tips, and techniques in order for you to see maximum results!
Written by me: Keith Fairburn
Personal Trainer, Sports Therapist, S&C Coach.
Ninja Warrior Semi-Finalist, Obstacle Racer, Salming Running Ambassador.
If you have any questions about anything I’ve written in this post or want to get in touch, contact me.