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Energy Expenditure Chart Quantifies Exercise Value

Energy expenditure can be quantified according to the type of exercise people do. This energy expenditure chart gives details, and advice.

By picking the brains of former fatties who transformed into exercise and motivational heroes, and addressing both diet and exercise at the same time you can overcome deep rooted hereditary nightmares.

The estimates for number of calories (energy) used during a physical activity are based on experiments that measure the amount of oxygen consumed during a specific bout of exercise for a certain body weight.

The energy costs of activities that require you to move your own body weight, such as walking or jogging, are greater for heavier people since they have more weight to move.

For example, a person weighing 150 pounds would use more calories jogging one mile than a person jogging alongside who weighs 115 pounds.

Always check to see what body weight is referred to in caloric expenditure charts you use.

Energy Expenditure Chart

A. Sedentary Activities Energy Costs Cals/Hour*
Lying down or sleeping 90
Sitting quietly 84
Sitting and writing, card playing, etc 114
B. Moderate Activities (150-350)
Bicycling (5 mph) 174
Canoeing (2.5 mph) 174
Dancing (Ballroom) 210
Golf (2-some, carrying clubs) 324
Horseback riding (sitting to trot) 246
Light housework, cleaning, etc 246
Swimming (crawl, 20 yards/min) 288
Tennis (recreational doubles) 312
Volleyball (recreational) 264
Walking (2 mph) 198
C. Vigorous Activities More than 350
Aerobic Dancing 546
Basketball (recreational) 450
Bicycling (13 mph) 612
Circuit weight training 756
Football (touch, vigorous) 498
Ice Skating (9 mph) 384
Racquetball 588
Roller Skating (9 mph) 384
Jogging (10 minute mile, 6 mph) 654
Scrubbing Floors 440
Swimming (crawl, 45 yards/min) 522
Tennis (recreational singles) 450
X-country Skiing ( 5 mph) 690
*Hourly estimates based on values calculated for calories burned per minute for a 150 pound (68 kg) person.  

(Energy Expenditure Chart Sources: "William D. McArdle, Frank I. Katch, Victor L. Katch, "Exercise Physiology: Energy, Nutrition and Human Performance" (2nd edition), Lea & Febiger, Philadelphia, 1986; Melvin H. Williams, "Nutrition for Fitness and Sport," William C. Brown Company Publishers, Dubuque, 1983.)

Exercise and Modern Living

One thing is certain. Most people do not get enough exercise in their ordinary routines.

All of the advances of modern technology – from electric can openers to power steering – have made life easier, more comfortable and much less physically demanding.

Yet our bodies need activity, especially if they are carrying around too much fat.

Satisfying this need requires a definite energy expenditure plan, and a commitment. There are two main ways to increase the number of calories you expend:

Start a regular energy expenditure exercise program if you do not have one already.

Increase the amount of physical activity in your daily routine.

The best way to control your weight is a combination of the above. The sum total of calories used over time will help regulate your weight as well as keep you physically fit.

Active Lifestyles

Let's look at how you can increase the amount of physical activity in your daily routine to supplement your exercise program.

  • Recreational pursuits such as gardening on weekends, bowling in the office league, family outings, an evening of social dancing, and many other activities provide added exercise. They are fun and can be considered an extra bonus in your weight control campaign.
  • Add more "action" to your day. Walk to the neighborhood grocery store instead of using the car. Park several blocks from the office and walk the rest of the way. Walk up the stairs instead of using the elevator; start with one flight of steps and gradually increase.
  • Change your attitude toward movement. Instead of considering an extra little walk or trip to the files an annoyance, look upon it as an added fitness boost. Look for opportunities to use your body. Bend, stretch, reach, move, lift and carry. Time-saving devices and gadgets eliminate drudgery and are a bonus to mankind, but when they substitute too often for physical activity they can demand a high cost in health, vigor and fitness.

These little bits of action are cumulative in their effects. Alone, each does not burn a huge amount of calories. But when added together they can result in a sizable amount of energy used over the course of the day. And they will help improve your muscle tone and flexibility at the same time.


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