There’s nothing like digging, hoeing and planting to build muscle and lower blood pressure. If you think gardening is for weaklings, try toting those big bags of mulch.
While spending a couple of hours in the gym can quickly become tedious, the same time spent in the garden will keep you entirely entertained and burn about 340 calories an hour in the process (based on a 150-pound person). That’s almost as many calories as an aerobics class. Gardening helps your heart, makes stress fly away, and connected you with the earth.
Apartment dwellers and people without yards can still enjoy the creative benefits of working with the soil. A 16-inch-deep container will hold a cherry tomato plant and some leaf lettuces. Balcony gardens can be as elaborate as you want, and a sunny window is a great place for herbs such as rosemary and basil or a bright geranium.