Gardening – The Workout

Workout in the backyard. Iron dumbbells, sports bottle of water and jump rope on the greenlawn

We talk a lot about how great gardening is for our mental and physical wellbeing. Being outdoors in the fresh air is a great for workout for everyone. Gardening allows you to destress and relax. And if you’ve found yourself sweating through your gardening hours don’t be alarmed. A hugely underrated form of exercise, we want to tell you what your gardening days are doing for your calorie deficit.

We’ve pulled some information from a Harvard Medical School study to show the calories you burn during gardening.

One thing to remember with calorie burning is the higher your BMI the more calories you burn, so the calorie amounts differ from person to person.

An exhausted man lying on the ground collapsed after mowing a huge lawn.

Step Count

When gardening, you’re rarely sat down. So you are guaranteed a workout. Whether you’re moving around your borders or walking back and forth to the garden shed. It all counts towards your steps. On average people try to walk 10,000 steps a day. This may feel like a hard task but just watch your steps clock up when you spend the day gardening.

Tasks such as mowing and raking the lawn can burn up to 120-178 calories in just 30 minutes! Making for a great workout.

Mulching the garden takes time and effort with bags of mulch laid out on the lawn alongside the flowerbed in a long row waiting to be spread with a cart stacked full of bags in the background


At certain times of the year, a lot of compost is involved in gardening tasks. As spring approaches, you may find yourself lifting bags of compost from your car. Pouring out old compost from pots and moving new pots into your garden from the garden centre. With this type of strenuous workout exercise we first advise to make sure you’re lifting properly. Because you don’t want a bad back. Lifting and moving heavy items is a great calorie burner and helps build muscle.

Carrying and moving items such as bags of compost, pots and logs can burn around 150-222 calories every 30 minutes. Hit those workout goals.

Person digging in garden


Digging is an important activity in gardening. When you want to plant a tree or shrub you need to dig a hole. If you are adding plants to your beds or borders, you'll dig on your hands and knees. These different types of digging activities, whether upright or knelt down will be a fab workout. And a sure way to ‘feel the burn’ and get the heart rate up.

Like lifting, when you dig, you can burn between 150-222 calories per half hour. So, don’t be surprised if you break a sweat planting your new apple tree.

Close Up Of Gardening Hand In Glove Pulling Out Weeds Grass From Soil. Work In Garden.


An essential part of maintaining your garden is weeding. Often seen as a chore, this is an activity to do regularly. Many weeds can appear unattractive to us and impact on the look of your garden. From your plants perspective, weeds  compete for moisture and nutrients making it more difficult for them to establish.

If you’re dreading weeding your garden, think of the positive workout benefits. Half an hour of weeding can burn around 139-205 calories in 30 minutes.

Young couple planting the tree while Watering a tree working in the garden as save world concept, nature, environment and ecology.


Last but not least, the fun part of gardening, planting. The staple activity when people think of gardening. Obviously, there are loads of different things you can plant in your garden. So the calorie burn will vary.

When you’re planting bulbs, smaller plants or veggies you can burn between 120-178 calories each half hour. Planting trees, shrubs and larger plants that need that extra elbow grease will burn around 135- 200.

CultivationStreet Blog (7)

So, get into your garden and get moving. We hope this motivates you to garden more for many reasons as well as for fitness purposes. An hour of gardening can burn as much as a 5k run! You may not be looking to lose weight, but gardening is just a great way to keep up your general fitness.


Cultivation Street 2021 is open for entries so enter today!

Leave a Comment

You must be logged in to post a comment.