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SERGEANTMAJOR's Photo SERGEANTMAJOR Posts: 6,412
9/26/09 3:04 P

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And all of the calorie burning algorithms have built in flaws. Not trying to be overly picky here simply trying to have people assess the techniques which they use to monitor relevant information.


It is called WORK-ing out for a reason.

I said getting fit was simple, I did not say it was easy.

Cardio burns calories, strength work burns fat.

Eat well to lose weight, exercise to get fit

You can not build a six pack using twelve packs


Often when we seek a magic bullet for fitness we end up shooting ourselves in the foot.

"I think calories are little germs in food that all moms are afraid of" Dennis the Menace

UNIDENT's Photo UNIDENT Posts: 33,498
9/26/09 2:51 P

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I think one of the flaws in your thought process here is that counting calories in is going to be accurate.

Sure, we may know the exact calories in broccoli, per 100grams. But is the person accurately recording their broccoli intake? Are they eating prepared foods which, as we've heard in many a racket-busting article already, often get away with reporting far less calories than is in the pack? How much difference is there depending on how their produce is grown and how long it sits on a shelf before they eat it?

We know the numbers for a wide variety of foods down to a specific scientific fact. But that sometimes has little relationship to what's actually going into a person's mouth, and in some cases what goes in bears little relationship to what's recorded. ;)

Deb, in New Zealand
SERGEANTMAJOR's Photo SERGEANTMAJOR Posts: 6,412
9/26/09 2:43 P

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Deb,

What I am positing here is that counting calories consumed is more rational and accurate than trying to monitor calories out using a perhaps flawed algorithm. As I read the research the macro nutrient value of the calories consumed does have an impact since some of the specific macro nutrients are required for proper utilizination of the others. It would be easier if all it required was fewer calories in that out but that has been demonstrated to not be accurate.

Simply posted as a thought piece to demonstrate a different approach to calorie counting.


It is called WORK-ing out for a reason.

I said getting fit was simple, I did not say it was easy.

Cardio burns calories, strength work burns fat.

Eat well to lose weight, exercise to get fit

You can not build a six pack using twelve packs


Often when we seek a magic bullet for fitness we end up shooting ourselves in the foot.

"I think calories are little germs in food that all moms are afraid of" Dennis the Menace

UNIDENT's Photo UNIDENT Posts: 33,498
9/26/09 2:28 P

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Frankly I don't see a difference.

Your recommendation seems to be to work out how many calories you need and eat that. Um ... isn't that what calorie counting is about?

You seem to rally against something by suggesting doing it. Sure, not by specifically counting both out and in, but definitely you're saying work out your numbers.

Like Weight Watchers, this is just another way to calorie count. It's exactly the same.

Ultimately, calories in vs calories out is the final bottom line. You say the quality of calories counts. Not for weight it doesn't. Certainly for health, yes, and one would be a fool to ignore it. But when it comes purely to weight loss, calories in vs calories out. No matter what they are. Eat 1200 calories a day of chocolate, you'll lose weight. Not healthily, but you will definitely lose.

Deb, in New Zealand
SERGEANTMAJOR's Photo SERGEANTMAJOR Posts: 6,412
9/26/09 12:07 P

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Calorie: a unit of heat; large calorie the amount of heat needed to raise on kilogram of water 1 degree Celsius, often used to measure the energy value of foods (KCal)

How do I figure out how many calories X workout burns? If I exercise more can I eat more? Why does the digital readout on the treadmill differ with my HRM or Spark allotment? All of these are recurring questions on the various message boards and all seem to garner different answers.

The problem is that the various algorithms for figuring out calorie burn are plagued by variables when it comes to individual readings. This is why ranges are used instead of absolute numbers when it comes to assigning values. Absolute values can only be obtained in laboratory settings. The values given for basal metabolic rate are based on averages but useful as a base line.

To lose weight you have to use the value given for your resting metabolic rate, the requirements for your daily activity and then create a deficit in your caloric intake. The premise that if calories out are less than calories in one will lose weight is a bit misleading since the nature of the calories in is important in determining the value to the body. The ratio of macro nutrients, carbohydrates, proteins and fats, has to be in balance, excluding or creating a deficiency in any one will throw the body metabolism out of sync.

So much for the lecture, how does this apply to someone who wants to lose weight and get fit? My first premise is that it is easier to control intake than attempt to track burn. When a resting metabolic rate and activity metabolic rate are compiled we now have a range of calories we can consume. We now add in a general value range for the non routine things we do in the form of dedicated exercise to determine a deficit to cause weight loss. Remember that eighty percent of weight lose is nutrition not exercise.




Since the calorie value of foods has been determined in a laboratory environment we can assume they are accurate and valid. Using this information we can plan meals and snacks to match our desired calorie intake. Paying attention to portion size and balancing macronutrients is the key to our meal planning. As long as we do the scheduled amount of exercise we can use the general values assigned for each one and do not need to get into a quandary over monitoring them precisely. To monitor them as individuals we use the perceived rate of exertion to determine of we are working at a proper intensity.

Bottom line in my opinion, we can over complicate a straight forward set of computations and get caught up in the paralysis of analysis. There is no need to chase numbers making like a green eye shaded accountant and recording long columns of numbers. We can plan ahead as to what we will eat and get on with the rest of our lives.

Questions and comments are welcome.



It is called WORK-ing out for a reason.

I said getting fit was simple, I did not say it was easy.

Cardio burns calories, strength work burns fat.

Eat well to lose weight, exercise to get fit

You can not build a six pack using twelve packs


Often when we seek a magic bullet for fitness we end up shooting ourselves in the foot.

"I think calories are little germs in food that all moms are afraid of" Dennis the Menace

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