Are you a NEAT freak?

Are you a NEAT freak?
Discover how much of your calorie burn comes from simple everyday activities

Have you heard of NEAT? NEAT stands for non-exercise activity thermogenesis, and it burns more calories than any PT session or fitness class you’ll ever do.

NEAT means all of the activity and movement you do outside of official sports, workouts, and exercise. NEAT includes walking, using the stairs, doing manual chores around the house, playing with the kids, taking the dog out, gardening. If you’re burning calories by moving your body (but it’s not classed as exercise), then it’s NEAT.

And NEAT burns serious amounts of calories. Which is why we encourage everyone to become more of a NEAT freak!

Why NEAT Matters

Have you ever wondered how two people who are roughly the same size, height, and shape, can eat different amounts and stay slim?

One seems to have the ability to chow down on as much as they like, whilst the other needs to fastidiously eat like a bird.

They’re the same age, height, and build. So what could account for the significant difference in their energy needs?

Their NEAT.

One person sits in the car to get to the station, sits on the train, gets to work, sits all day, eats lunch sitting down, takes the return journey home, and then watches TV.

The other walks the dog before work, rides their bike to the station, walks from the station to work. At work, they are naturally inclined to get up and walk around, delivering messages in person rather than ponging an email. They volunteer to make a round of tea. They pop out at lunch to run errands. A few evenings a week they meet a friend to play sport or go to the gym. At weekends, they tackle the garden, wash the car, or enjoy going on a long walk with the family.

5 Benefits To Moving More

NEAT doesn’t just burn more calories than being sedentary. Daily activity also has significant health benefits which are important for men and women of any age

1 Emotional wellness
Being more active – especially outside – is great for mental health and emotional wellness, helping you manage stress and think through problems.

2 Vitamin D
Our bodies can only make Vitamin D when we expose enough skin to sunlight for long enough. This is tough in the UK (especially with indoor jobs). Get outside for a walk and boost your Vitamin D levels.

3 Time management
Getting some of your calorie burn from NEAT means less time driving to the gym, spin class, or workout session. A great way to stay on top of calorie output on really busy days.

4 Muscle tone and bone health
NEAT is daily activity, which means it will tone your muscles and build bone density (for example, walking is great for the legs and butt).

5 Cardiovascular health
All extra activity is beneficial for heart health, your cardiovascular system, and can even contribute to minimising your risk of Type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and some cancers.

Easy Ways To Increase Your NEAT

Exercise sessions are important for any health and fitness goal. But there’s a limit to how many hours a week you can workout, play sport, or see your Personal Trainer. NEAT fits around your existing schedule, helping you kill several birds with one stone! See if any of these NEAT ideas fit your lifestyle.

Walk during phone calls. Whenever you make or take a call, get up and walk around. This will burn significantly more calories than taking calls sitting down. And it will really add up if you spend a lot of time on the phone every day!

Get out for a walk. At lunchtime, after work, in the evening, or just during the day (between work projects or meetings). All walks count.

Do local chores on foot. Rather than driving to the Post Office, local shop, or to visit friends, try walking. This will get your daily step count up to the recommended 10,000 or beyond.

More manual chores. Wash and dry up instead of using the dishwasher. Mow the lawn and strim the edges. Wash your own car rather than using a car wash. Boring, but effective!

Volunteer to play with the kids. If you don’t have your own kids, become their favourite Uncle/Aunt/family friend by offering to play footie or tackle the monkey bars in the park. Try to keep up with a kid for the day and you’ll stay pretty lean!

Have a standing desk. Standing up more (and sitting much less) will do wonders for your calorie burn, muscle tone, heart health, and even your mental focus.

Could you raise your NEAT levels? Or if you’re NEAT is fine but would like help with more specific exercise please get in touch. You can email us at


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