Does doing housework knock you for six?

Tomorrow, four of my friends are coming round (with KFC) so I thought that I would have a go at sprucing everything up.

I decided that I would have a good go at the kitchen - I sprayed and wiped down the cupboard doors, sprayed and wiped the tiles and I cleaned the hob. The kitchen is looking good! Unfortunately, I am not looking so good - I am absolutely whacked!

I really wanted to know if, by carrying on doing housework, my lung capacity will improved. I'm sure that I read somewhere that it is good to work until you are out of breath. Personally, I don't see the merit in working until you have to hang onto a kitchen cabinet in order to get your breath back.

Am I being a wimp?



34 Replies

  • No it just bowls me over, ( sorry couldn't resist) :)

  • First sentence in third paragraph should read 'I really wanted to know if, by carrying on doing housework until I am short of breath, my lung capacity will be improved.'



  • No, you're not being a wimp at all ! Possibly the spray you used may have contributed to kitchen cabinet hugging though :) depending on what was in it, of course.

  • I was using 'Mr Muscle' spray stuff. Smells nice - but it didn't cross my mind that it may have an adverse effect on me.

    Another product I use is 'Cillit Bang' (to clean the bath) - which I do know is NOT an aid to easy breathing. I do find it very difficult to clean the bath using 'Flash' or something similar. Cillit Bang is great - spray the bath, wait ten minutes and then use the shower head to wash it away. When I use it I cover my nose and mouth.

    Thanks for that advice Scrobbitty - I'm going to check what is in these sprays before I use them again.



  • Yeah, scrobbitty, good thinking. I have to be very careful with chemicals I use. I don't use sprays unless I can't find an alternative cream stuff. Just having to do housework makes me feel rough without the added stress of breathing in chemicals :-) have a rest, put your feet up. You have done really well :-) Alison

  • Hello Alison

    I have to admit that I had quite a few rests inbetween cleaning cupboard doors and hobs etc.

    For my furniture, I use polish which is in a tin and elbow grease! I sometimes think I'll end up with arms like a wrestler. Smells lovely and it makes me feel good when I've done it (can't say that I do it very often though).

    At the moment, I'm having another rest (lol) and an Irish Coffee.

    I'll do some more tomorrow morning (maybe, possibly, if I have to).

    Thanks Alison



  • no Annec you are not a wimp ,what with all your illnesses, i struggle my daughter comes friday morning and does what needs doing but i struggle the rest of the week ,i sit down and push the vac !! i am sure m ore people than me do it that way Iron, cant lift an iron, shake what i want and put it on but we both still have a laugh you take a rest and b the cleaning my nurse said to me "do you do your own cleaning " i said"i dont clean" she replied "you mean you dont move furniture around" she was laughing too true i dont move furniture around you take care tell your friends when they come your having a cleaning party and give them all a duster

  • You are definately not a wimp,sounds like you did very well, I have to pace myself when it comes to housework, I sit down and vacume, I even find myself leaning on my elbows doing the dishes and I've been trying to talk myself into cleaning the windows for days instead of crawling around the garden weeding! hope you have a nice time with your pals :) x

  • Well done you for tackling it, though. I use no chemicals at all in the home, and rely solely on my steam cleaner for everything except hoovering and dusting .... :)

  • Hello Newlands

    I sit on the floor to polish the furniture if it is at all possible.

    In the past, I used to move the furniture around but I don't even entertain the idea now.

    I'm off to bed now and hope that in the morning I'll be fighting fit.

    Love and hugs



  • OMG!!!!! I need to do another little bit of cleaning now. One of my cats has come in and presented me with a dead shrew. I'll have to get the Dettol spray out after I've moved the poor little thing (the shrew) to the dustbin.

    Then, I am definitely going to bed.

    Tomorrow is another day.



  • Ewwwwwwwwwwwwwww - my cat bought me a live mouse the other day :( Saved it, tho :)

  • Any form of exercise including cleaning is good for you as it expands your breathing ability (deep breathing exercises are also good). Exercise increases your tolerance (for exercise and daily living), and pushing the boundaries (of breathlessness) is also regarded as a means of increasing tolerance. Credible medical evidence exists that pushing the boundaries will not harm you or reduce your breathing ability - as your body will rebel long before you reach the point of no return. Stay well. Martin

  • Similar thoughts. Anyone can work up qite a glow if they move around.

    Do what you can when you can and pace yourself.

    Anything unforseen, get yourself checked out.

  • Yeah I don't do much housework coz it makes me sob. Well thats my excuse anyway and I'm sticking to it :D

    Bev x

  • I can't use a vacuum cleaner anymore so I find a carpet sweeper and a longhandled dustpan do a good job. I use a steamer on the kitchen floor. Keep smiling.

    Carole x

  • Wimp . . nooo not at all, it is all too much for me now. I worked up until a year ago and burnt myself out. I Worked in healthcare where you are on the go 24/7 . . Eventually I had to phone them up and tell them I was unwell, signed off for 3 months, But during those 3 months I rarely left my bed and slept non stop.

    One thing you might take into your thoughts is that using cleaning fluids, sprays are a big no no. Especially in a confined area. The vapours you breath in do more damage than good. As is paint if you are fit enough to decorate. Those latter years I worked I think I was very foolish not looking after myself.

    Keep smiling and take your time, in reality, no one would really wish for you to make yoursef poorly just because of overdoing the housework. And lol .. . and end up having to cancel your friends visit 'cause you just feel too tired to want company.

    Enjoy your friends, housework comes number two . . oh yes and ditch powerful cleaning aids.


  • Hello Ros

    You are abolutely spot on!!! I carried on with my cleaning this morning and I am now cream crackered. OMG!!!!

    What can I use to clean instead of my sprays and bleaches? I'm sure that I read something about vinegar being good and also baking soda (well, I think it was baking soda). Perhaps I'll have a Google search.

    If you do know of anything please let me know.

    I think I may have a good idea of my own - I'll get someone to come in for a couple of hours a couple of days a week. Mind you, I'd have to clean up a bit before he or she came in.



  • Have a look at this it tells you about using natural things to clean (there are other sites as well)

    I have a cleaner hate housework anyway so now I have an excuse to not do it :D

  • I've just had a look on that site Jan, it's very good. I have similar problems to Pepsi with the housework so I might give a couple of things a go. Thanks for the link.

    Love from Bobby xxx

  • Cant use vacuum anymore, have a rechargeable sweeper which I put round most days.

    Once a week I have a cleaner she cleans the bathroom and then vacs and dusts the rest of the house it's wonderful.

    polly xx

  • Polly

    I got what I thought was the perfect Hitachi vacuum cleaner from Poundland. Just 6" wide but a 1000watt motor. It was lovely. Then the switch broke. Took it back and got another. The switch broke again so I got my money back. Great shame really 'cos it was perfect otherwise.

    Bobby xx

  • Kitchen wipes are a good thing to use rather than sprays, might be worth a try. Doesnt mean you dont get breathles & warn out, but better than inhaling sprays. Xx

  • Definetly not a wimp You are doing really well. It takes me 20 minutes just to wash up! As for cleaning well I have given in and got a cleaner to come in for 2 hours a week. Susie Q

  • Not a wimp, no! I find vacuuming and doing the bathroom particularly exhausting and often have to have a little lie down afterwards.

  • Pepsicoley, For most people with COPD - ALL exercise is good and exerting until breathless is good for most people. But it is important not to overdo it. On my PR course they gave us a scale of 1-9 in terms on being out of breath , and up to 6-7 was ok but please DO take a break after exertion. I have COPD and had a heart bypass 14 years ago and I am mainly fine.

    Talk to your GP if unsure. Best Wishes. Adrian

  • House work is a pain in the rear end and even if you don't have copd it can really tire you out as just as you think you've done everything you find more to do, its a never ending circle. I do not use any chemicals at all as they just knock me off my feet for a few days as i found out when at a friends house, she was spraying polish in another room but the fumes must of got to me because I got a tightening of my chest and had to use my inhaler, went outside and felt a lot better but had a headache for the rest of the day and felt bad for about 3 days.

    I use a steamer for cleaning everything (even the parrots cages) it gets everything lovely and clean and sanitizes everything too and all it costs me is some water. I also find that the steam helps my breathing too so sometimes i do a bit of extra cleaning just to breath in the steam. It keeps the dust from floating about too, I wouldn't be without mine.

  • What sort of steamer have you got Silk? I have often thought of buying one but don't know which one would be best.

    Love and hugs



  • I got the yelo from off the shopping chanel it cost about £80 when i bought it last year and its been brilliant, I had a small hand held one prior to this and although it did the job it just took ages to keep filling it up. You want one that has all the attachments so wait till they are on offer and you usually save yourself about £50 when they do a sale. Mine heats up in seconds and looks like a little cylinder hoover it cleans all the limescale off taps too and does tiles brilliantly.


    The polti is a good one too but ive only used it when I borrowed a friends, so cant really say how good it is long term.

  • Thanks for the information Silk - I really appreciate it.

    I think I'm going to invest in one.

    Love and hugs



  • Your very welcome (good thing about buying from the tv is they give you a set time so you can try it and if you dont like it you can send it back)

    Hugs Silk x

  • First of all, no sprays, especially aerosols as they remain airborne a long time. To clean the tub: if you know how to make gravy using cornstarch, substutute vinegar with the cornstarch, only you want it to be thick then it cools. Wipe this on the tub and it will run down very slowly. I do this while I'm still in the tub and it's draining. Adding something like Mr. Bubble to the bath water seems to keep the tub cleaner. Vinegar doesn't have an odor when dry but one of the safest products for copd'ers to use.

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