Gardening can be used to keep fit

An article in the Examiner has confirmed what many garden and greenhouse enthusiasts already knew – that horticulture can keep you in shape.

Health and fitness writer Carrie Myers Smith told the online resource that manual gardening is a good way of getting exercise without paying for a gym membership.

She explained many daily tasks can be turned into workout opportunities by approaching them in the right way.

The expert gave examples of raking the lawn and hoeing the garden, as well as making multiple trips to the car to bring in grocery bags one at a time instead of all at once.

Other snippets of advice include taking the stairs rather than the elevator and even dancing while doing the vacuuming.

Ms Myers Smith said being purposely inefficient can have a positive effect on the body, keeping it trim by providing it with extra exercise.

She suggested the toughest part of taking such action could be coming round to the idea of making extra efforts that might not be necessary for everyday life – such as deliberately parking further away from your destination to give you a chance to take a brisk walk.

Meanwhile, it was recently reported that UK prime minister Gordon Brown and his wife Sarah have followed in the footsteps of Michelle Obama in growing their own fruit and veg in the grounds of their official residence.