Wednesday, October 30, 2013

The Walking Donut Example

Now that I've been doing this weight loss thing for some time, I thought I'd really dig into the calorie thing.  Like does it really make THAT much of a difference if I use fat free and/or sugar free creamer in my coffee?  I mean, the regular stuff is only like 35 calories per tablespoon, right?

Let's see...

I've been skipping the weekly donut day at work for many weeks now and if you add that up, it gets interesting (at least to me and the geeky side of my brain).  So if you hate math, please forgive me for the following:

Average calories for a donut w/chocolate frosting is around 300. (From my research, they range between 200-380 calories depending on how they're made, so 300 seems like a good number.)

This week marks my 24th donut-free week.

300 x 24 = 7,200  (300 calories times 24 weeks equals 7,200 calories)

There are about 3500 calories in a pound.

7200 / 3500 = 2.057

By skipping just one donut a week for 24 weeks, I've avoided 2 pounds.

What if I skip the donut for a whole year?

300 x 52 = 15,600

15,600 / 3500 = 4.457

By skipping just one donut a week for 52 weeks, I'll avoid almost 4 1/2 pounds!

That's just ONE food choice.  A m a z i n g.

So, imagine if I cut out some of (not all - let's not get crazy) the fat and sugar in my current food choices?  Wow, right?

Ok, just stay with me a little longer now, I promise to be quick...

Well, I'd better use a chart because this stuff can vary.  But yay!  A CHART!!  I get points for using a chart, right?!?
Chart from

If I exercise by simply taking a walk for 30 minutes, 3 times/week...

Let's say I weigh around 200 pounds and walk 3.0 miles per hour (or 1.5 miles per half hour).

According to the chart above, I burn 106 calories per mile.

That's 1.5 miles each day or 4.5 miles per week of walking...

106 x 4.5 = 477

After 24 weeks (may as well use the donut time frame)...

477 x 24 = 11,448 calories burned

11,448 / 3500 = 3.271

I would keep off or lose over 3 pounds.

What if I do it for one year?

477 x 52 = 24,804

24,804 / 3500 = 7.087

If I walked a 3 times a week for one year, I would keep off or lose over 7 pounds!

The math is crazy, right?  Could this possibly be true?  Obviously, this technically would only be a sure thing if we eat EXACTLY what we need to function and ALWAYS consume/burn the exact same amount of calories each day.

No one does that.

We all have our "busy" days where we're more active and we rarely eat the same number of calories two days in a row much less every day of the week.  BUT the Walking/Donut example still proves a point...

If I don't walk that extra 30 minutes 3 times a week and I don't skip the donut, by the end of one year's time, I'll probably have GAINED that 11 pounds!

So, to answer my original question, yes, I believe it does make a difference.  

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