T Nation

Chopping Wood

Have there ever been any studies on the health benefits (if there are any) of chopping wood? I ask because over the weekend I cut down a sizable tree and every night now I’ve been splitting the wood and stacking it (I still have about 75% more to go!).

I spend about 2 hours a night doing this using an 8 lbs mauler for splitting and when I am done for the evening I am soaked in sweat and dead tired. I figure I am getting a cardio and weight workout when I do this.

To explain this as a “workout” the process goes like this: I’ve cut the trunk into about 18 inch section with each section being roughly 2 feet in diameter (this was accomplished with a chainsaw of course).

I then stack one on the other (I’d say they weigh about 100 lbs +/- each) to elevate it so I can hit it better, then I start swinging my mauler until I’ve split that section (one section of this size can yield over 20 pieces split).

I load the split wood into a cart and pull it about 50 meters to my wood pile and stack it. Then I repeat. I like to think this is a good workout.

I believe chopping wood comes under the category of yard work. I think its one of the best form of exercise anyone can do for good health. I’m sure I heard studies stating similar benefits.

Its like moving bags of fertilizer, moving a boulder, flipping a tyre or tossing a caber. All good.

Yeah, I was thinking that its not really a strength workout but rather its my lifting in the gym it makes me strong and able to do this type of work. Of course its fun too! On that note I can’t imagine being one of those people who are too out of shape that they can’t do manual labor in there own yard!

I always make sure I down a fair amount of protein + carbs after I water my lawn. It’s a burner for sure.

Oh yeah, chain saw work and hauling and splitting wood is one helluva workout.

Anybody who hasn’t done it before would not understand.

[quote]new2training wrote:
Oh yeah, chain saw work and hauling and splitting wood is one helluva workout.

Anybody who hasn’t done it before would not understand.

[/quote]

For sure. Swinging a splitting maul will show you how much of a man you really are.

Reminds me of my teenage years before my dad started to buy his firewood.

Some people do this exercise just to get some wood to keep them warm during the winter. They probably don’t appreciate the workout though. :wink:

[quote]Wreckless wrote:
Some people do this exercise just to get some wood to keep them warm during the winter. They probably don’t appreciate the workout though. ;-)[/quote]

I do it for heat and appreciate the workout.

Do I win something :slight_smile:

[quote]new2training wrote:
Wreckless wrote:
Some people do this exercise just to get some wood to keep them warm during the winter. They probably don’t appreciate the workout though. :wink:

I do it for heat and appreciate the workout.

Do I win something :)[/quote]

I did it because I was told to.

[quote]BigRagoo wrote:

I did it because I was told to.[/quote]

That’s exactly how I got started! Years ago it went something like this:
Son, we’re going to cut down the pine tree out back!
Can I use the chain saw pop?

No, I get to do that and you get to clean up after me!

I’m pleased to say that I have graduated to using the chain saw on my own. LOL.

[quote]BigRagoo wrote:
new2training wrote:
Wreckless wrote:
Some people do this exercise just to get some wood to keep them warm during the winter. They probably don’t appreciate the workout though. :wink:

I do it for heat and appreciate the workout.

Do I win something :slight_smile:

I did it because I was told to.[/quote]

ahh, avoid the old ass chewin’. Good motivation. Growing up, that was my motivation too.

Now I just hate paying high electric bills. I hear that heat pump running and I see dollar bills floating out the window.

[quote]GunnyBear wrote:
BigRagoo wrote:

I did it because I was told to.

That’s exactly how I got started! Years ago it went something like this:
Son, we’re going to cut down the pine tree out back!
Can I use the chain saw pop?

No, I get to do that and you get to clean up after me!

I’m pleased to say that I have graduated to using the chain saw on my own. LOL.[/quote]

Sounds familiar. Turns out, running the saw isn’t as easy as I suspected as a kid.

It’s hell on the lower back isn’t it?

Man, I’d give anything to have a day of cutting wood with Dad again.

[quote]FutureDoc wrote:
I always make sure I down a fair amount of protein + carbs after I water my lawn. It’s a burner for sure.[/quote]

Make sure you vary your nossels and hoses. One week try a Gilmour 8-Ply Flexogen Garden Hose, 3/4", 100’ next week a coiled vinyl superseted with a 6 ply rubber vinyl 50’. I like to do drop sets where I connect all my hoses together and take them off as I get closer to the spicket.

hell yes great for you as is any manual labor in general great way to get conditioned etc etc

also make you mentally tough as well as Physically and a great sense of accomplishment when you done

Phill

I chopped wood constantly while living with my parents. I grew to love it. I also shoveled our driveway and grew to love it.
Now I shovel my neighbor’s driveway and my own and refuse to buy a snow blower just out of the girly-man factor. I have to pound the bloody hell out of my big tire with different weight sledge hammers because I don’t burn wood. I love it. Go to torqueathletic.com. I got a 20 and 30 pound hammer that give me hours of enjoyment (beating the crap out of a tire).

[quote]tumbeh wrote:
I chopped wood constantly while living with my parents. I grew to love it. I also shoveled our driveway and grew to love it.
Now I shovel my neighbor’s driveway and my own and refuse to buy a snow blower just out of the girly-man factor. I have to pound the bloody hell out of my big tire with different weight sledge hammers because I don’t burn wood. I love it. Go to torqueathletic.com. I got a 20 and 30 pound hammer that give me hours of enjoyment (beating the crap out of a tire).[/quote]

I went to that site and just couldn’t get over the 150 pound sledge hammer!

LOL!

[quote]new2training wrote:
GunnyBear wrote:
BigRagoo wrote:

I did it because I was told to.

That’s exactly how I got started! Years ago it went something like this:
Son, we’re going to cut down the pine tree out back!
Can I use the chain saw pop?

No, I get to do that and you get to clean up after me!

I’m pleased to say that I have graduated to using the chain saw on my own. LOL.

Sounds familiar. Turns out, running the saw isn’t as easy as I suspected as a kid.

It’s hell on the lower back isn’t it?

Man, I’d give anything to have a day of cutting wood with Dad again. [/quote]

Ya just brought tears to my eyes. My dad passed away 8 months ago and I miss him bad.
How about all you big, strong, tough T Nation guys give your Dad a call…just to say hi or even (gasp) tell him you love him. You will be glad you did. He will too.

Every year my dad organises a huge bonfire. Often in the weeks running up to it we do a lot of tree felling.

I love carrying the huge logs around after. I look forward to it every year. Partly why I want to get my deadlift up by November :slight_smile:

lol
Class can we say overanalyze?

[quote]Airtruth wrote:
lol
Class can we say overanalyze?
[/quote]

overanal…what?