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Measuring Calories Burned During Exercise

To help you determine how many calories you use during various activities, scientists recommend a common measure called a MET, the amount of energy you use when you sleep. It comes out to about one kilo-calorie per kilogram of body weight, or one half a calorie per pound. For example, a 130-pound person burns 60 calories per hour during sleep. A 155-pounder uses 70 calories per hour.

When you ride a bicycle at 12 miles per hour, you are exercising at about six METS or 10 times the amount of energy that you use during sleep. That's the same as running a 10-minute mile, playing racquetball competitively, jumping rope at a moderate pace or playing in a soccer game. To show you how much you increase your metabolism during exercise, consider that ten METS are equal to five times as much energy as you use when you wash dishes, shop, cook, iron or walk at a leisurely pace.

Checked 1/18/14

May 10th, 2013
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About the Author: Gabe Mirkin, MD

Sports medicine doctor, fitness guru and long-time radio host Gabe Mirkin, M.D., brings you news and tips for your healthful lifestyle. A practicing physician for more than 50 years and a radio talk show host for 25 years, Dr. Mirkin is a graduate of Harvard University and Baylor University College of Medicine. He is board-certified in four specialties: Sports Medicine, Allergy and Immunology, Pediatrics and Pediatric Immunology. The Dr. Mirkin Show, his call-in show on fitness and health, was syndicated in more than 120 cities. Read More
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