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Make That Garden Bed Your New Gym This Summer

By HERWriter
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this summer make the garden bed your new gym iStockphoto/Thinkstock

That garden bed could be your new gym. And just like the newbie admiring the shiny gym equipment, you should approach the tools of your new trade with caution and respect.

Just like gym equipment, this stuff can make you or break you.

It may just look like some dirt, with some tools to dig around in it (and it is) but is also potentially so much more. This is the place you'll bend your back and strengthen it or strain it.

This is where you will squat and work your muscles so that they are either become more toned or damaged. This is the place ... well, you get the idea.

So, like with any exercise regimen, you should do a little stretching and a little warming up before you get down and dirty. In the beginning, don't spend more than 20 to 30 minutes with your hoe, your rake, your shovel or your trowel.

Starting small can also apply to the size of your garden. If you want to do it really small, you can garden in containers.

This is a good option for people in apartment buildings or tiny yards. If you can spread out more than this, a garden bed that is about 4 feet by 6 feet will make a nice supply of plants.

Don't cheap out on your tools. Dont use a trowel if a shovel is more suitable to the job.

Gloves can help you grip utensils more firmly. Consider a kneeling pads to take it easy on your knees.

The University of Virginia says that gardening is a moderate to strenuous exercise in the same category as biking and walking. The National Institutes of Health calls gardening a moderate exercise equivalent to biking and walking as well.

Working in the garden will strengthen all your major muscle groups, and if you want to lose some unwanted pounds, gardening on a regular basis will burn off some of that weight.

Think about it. You'll stretch to reach branches of the plants you want and bend down to pull out the weeds you don't want.

Raking, pushing a wheelbarrow, wielding a shovel, all are forms of resistance training with a bonus. They're all going to help provide you with beautiful flowers, healthy produce, or both.

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We value and respect our HERWriters' experiences, but everyone is different. Many of our writers are speaking from personal experience, and what's worked for them may not work for you. Their articles are not a substitute for medical advice, although we hope you can gain knowledge from their insight.


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