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I ate 420,000 calories too many

Thursday, March 10, 2011

In my quest for spark points (so I can send motivational goodies to you, my spark friends) I decided to take a quiz. I clicked on nutrition since that's my focus area right now. Quiz title "When does food become fat". 12 questions. Sure no problem. I'd click through, pick up a few tips in the process and go on about my "sparking". RUDE AWAKENING. Question 2 of the quiz, "How many calories are equal to one pound of body fat?"

Well, I've been reading about calories and two numbers stood out, a little eenie meenie, and I chose 1,350. X You are incorrect. Correct answer is 3,500. Ok, I figured I was wrong and sincerely resolved to continue my quest to understand nutrition, but later, after I earned my spark points for the quiz. As I'm about to hit next question I see the explanation for why I'm wrong off to the side. I read it.

"One pound of body fat is 3500 calories." I think, "OK, yeah", as the sentence goes right out of my head.

The next sentence reads "You have to create a 3500 calorie deficit through diet and exercise to lose one pound of body fat". My thoughts, "deficit, yes ok, I need to exercise, burn calories, got it." My, next thought, wait, how many calories do I need to burn?! All subsequent thoughts give way to hysterical calculations- Ok, I'm 280 pounds. Thats's 280 times 3500, that's, I need a calculator, wait. Calm down. Think. Ok.

I read the last sentence. "To gain a pound, you'd have to consume 3500 more calories than your body is able to use. Ok, "So , If I'm 280lbs and I should be around 160 (generous number). And if all these extra pounds are just calories sitting around, then I ate HOW MANY extra calories? 280 minus 160 times 3500=x (7th grade math put to use ya'll).

That's 120 extra pounds, meaning in theory I ate 420,000 calories too many. So that means that since I was not out walking burning at least 230 calories an hour a day(according to mayo clinic), that I now need to address the surplus of calories aka fat.

Doing the bare minimum of walking 1 hour, it would take me 1,826 hours which is 456 days or 1 year and 3 months to lose the extra 120 pounds.

As the saying goes "If you don't know where you came from, you won't know where you're going". Now, I can no longer just say, "I have to lose weight" or "I need to burn calories" Nope. Now, I know where I'm coming from. I know that this version of me came from 420,000 unnecessary calories. So, now, I know where I'm going and I don't see "bare minimum" anywhere on the agenda.

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