Calorie-burning gardening: How to slim down and grow veggies!

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If you want to slim down and enjoy home-grown veggies from your very own garden, learn to...

If you want to slim down and enjoy home-grown veggies from your very own garden, learn to sweat. Tilling and mowing are considered moderate aerobic activities. An hour of gardening a day, at a moderate pace, can burn up to 455 calories for a 200 lb. person. To shed a pound a week, aim to burn 3,500 calories. So, let's get busy!

1. Pull, don't spray, weeds
Put on some old clothes, grab a knee pad and start pulling. Weeding is a great upper-body workout that burns calories, tones arms and de-clutters your garden.

2. Manually till the soil
Whether you're aerating your garden mid-season, or flexing your green thumb for the first time with a new garden, leave the power tools in your garage. An old-fashioned push tiller with sharp metal tines is all you need to turn the soil. Then by hand, remove the clumps of grass or weeds. Getting a little dirty in the soil is sure to work up a sweat.

3. Protect your plants
If an unexpected chill is forecast, make sure to cover your plants with towels and sheets. This prevents delicate seedlings from freezing and wilting.

4. Lift and move supplies
Do you use mulch in your garden to keep your soil from drying out under the hot sun? Carrying the heavy bags one by one to your garden will tone your legs and arms in the process. Do the same with shovels, rakes, pots of plants, bags of soil and pruning sheers.


5. Prune, rake and haul
The only way to have a successful garden is by maintaining it. If you avoid these outdoor tasks for a few weeks, you'll likely stumble upon overgrown bushes, fallen debris that needs raking and plants requiring pruning. Making these maintenance tasks part of your weekly gardening will burn calories and make your green space prettier.

Schedule an hour of garden work each day and you'll be rewarded with a shrinking waistline and fresh vegetables for the dinner table. Need some help? Hire a local landscaping service in Atlanta to get started on the right track!

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