Number geek

I had a very good week. I totaled up my numbers this morning for last week and I burned 3320 calories through exercise. Here’s a breakdown:

  • Monday: 210 (30 minute walk)
  • Tuesday: 630 cal (walked for 90 minutes in three separate 30-minute bouts)
  • Wednesday: 420 cal (two 30-minute walks)
  • Thursday: 500 cal (30 minutes of weight lifting plus 30 minutes of HIIT at the gym)
  • Friday: nothing
  • Saturday: 660 cal (55 minute run)
  • Sunday: ~900 cal (4 1/2 hours of strolling mixed with some walking briskly)

The way it breaks down for me is I use a calories per minute rule of thumb for different intensity levels. Based on my current weight, I approximate 7 calories/minute for walking-level intensity (medium intensity) and 12 calories/minute for a running level of effort (high intensity). For yesterday, I spent several hours strolling in museums and parks, I approximate about 3-4 calories per minute for that kind of walking because it’s less work than walking briskly so I adjust accordingly.

So, I have my rules of thumb and I do a quick calculation whenever I do some physical activity and write it in my little journal. If I walk for 30 minutes that’s 30 minutes X 7 cal = 210 calories burned. It’s not an exact science, but for my purposes it doesn’t have to be. I’ve always used this method so I know based on my approximations about where I need the numbers to land for maintenance and for weight loss. Above 3000 in exercise is a great number!

I like summing things up and seeing how great the totals look for the week (conversely, I don’t like it when they don’t look great for a week – motivation to change my ways). Also, my fruits and veggies numbers were good – well over 7 servings of fruits/veggies per day. Those Opal apples definitely help, they’re a treat in and of themselves.

Last week was a great weight management week for me. I will get on the scale tomorrow morning to see what my body says, but I’m reasonably confident it will be heading in the direction I expect.

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2 Responses to “Number geek”

  1. Andie Says:

    I’ve never really focused on a weekly calories burned by exercise – something new to consider.

    What is really encouraging to me is how much of what you are logging comes simply from walking. I was just reading someone else’s blog that recounted a time they felt wiped out trying to do a beginner-level exercise DVD right at the start of the journey to lose weight and how hard/discouraging it was. You don’t even need to start with a DVD, you can just walk, and that will always be a critical part of hitting exercise goals. Simple, and yet not.


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