There was a dialogue not too long ago amongst MAN v FAT readers about how totally different apps and train displays will attribute typically massively totally different calorie counts to the identical train session. Clearly, for those who’re following a calorie counting path to drop some weight then these items can imply the distinction between a loss and a achieve – it’s also one of many main causes of these horrible plateaus that all of us expertise some occasions.
To settle the difficulty as soon as and for all I was requested to hold out a bit experiment as an instance this phenomenon and see if we are able to really belief what My Fitness Pal is telling us.
I weighed in at 84 kilos. That is me plus my garments, footwear, coronary heart charge monitor, small backpack, the telephone recording the GPS observe and a not too long ago eaten lunch of scrambled eggs on toast.
I set off on a brief run round an area park. In whole I ran 1.2 miles in a shifting time of 11 minutes 34 seconds, at a mean shifting pace of 6.1 mph. This is in accordance with My Tracks in my telephone. Strava has the identical GPX file exhibiting a shifting time of 9:51 however at the very least agreed on the gap.
Although I’m in fine condition and I train a ridiculous quantity I don’t usually run, so I used to be pleased sufficient with this. I’d additionally performed an hour’s arduous circuit coaching beforehand that day. None of which is of any relevance to this actually, nevertheless it’s necessary for me!
The actual function of the experiment was to see what 4 totally different sources would calculate my calorie burn as. Here are the outcomes:
Strava (from GPX file) 198
Heart charge monitor 171
My Tracks (from GPX file) 167
My Fitness Pal (logged 6mph for 11:34) 159
So, there’s a 22% distinction between the best and lowest figures!
My perception is that the guts charge monitor is more likely to be essentially the most correct. The others will probably be primarily based on a calculation of how a lot vitality it takes to maneuver my weight over the given distance, making an allowance for elevation and different elements.
By definition it is going to be primarily based on an averaged set of knowledge and it’ll nearly definitely fail to take into consideration many elements resembling how environment friendly my working approach is, how match I’m, whether or not I’m exercising in a fasted state, and so on. The coronary heart charge monitor nonetheless will probably be making the identical assumptions however it’s at the very least measuring how arduous I’m working in opposition to my most coronary heart charge. It appears logical to me that this inherently takes into consideration among the variable elements resembling my health stage.
Those of us who’ve misplaced weight, or who keep our weight, utilizing a meals diary resembling My Fitness Pal, which takes train into consideration, have to have an inexpensive estimate of what number of energy we’re burning. Whatever food regimen you’re following, getting an thought of calorie expenditure is a precious lesson to study – as soon as you understand how lengthy you must run for to work off that pint, you’re extra more likely to get an thought of what a stability actually appears to be like like.
In all of this stuff I feel it’s much better to underestimate than overestimate, I feel. One behavior that has been prompt is to make use of a few totally different calculators and take the bottom. Other individuals counsel decreasing that also additional to offer your self the perfect likelihood of being pleasantly shocked once you step on the scales.
My conclusion? You can’t consider every little thing you learn.