# Calorie Counter

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Hi! This is my first post; I just joined mfp last night. I’m wondering how many calories I burn on the treadmill, because the number it gives me is wayyyyyy wrong.

I’m a 50 year old woman, I’m 5’3”, and I weigh 125-129 lbs. I go on for half an hour, walking very fast (switching around between 3.7 and 4 mph) but don’t run. Does anyone know how to calculate this, please?
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## Replies

Thank you very much, autumnblade75! I'll check that out right now.
• Posts: 16,973Member Member
I'd be curious how it compares.

Because treadmills have been used in research studies for so long - the formula's that give accurate calorie burn are public knowledge and treadmill makers use them.

So long as they know your weight, and they have the correct distance the belt moves - they are usually very close.

But they are giving Gross burn as most things would - but on MFP better to log the Net burn.
• Posts: 432Member Member
If you don't mind, could you post how that compared to what the treadmill says? I always thought the calories on the treadmill were correct. I'm curious how close it is.
• Posts: 236Member Member
Generally speaking, you burn about 100 calories per mile. If your treadmill estimate is close to that, then it’s probably close enough.
• Posts: 8,732Member Member
cbihatt wrote: »
Generally speaking, you burn about 100 calories per mile. If your treadmill estimate is close to that, then it’s probably close enough.

Sorry, not even close to that walking...

If you use Runner's Worlds formula of .30 x weight in lbs x distance in miles you would be burning (net) about 39 cal per mile walked at 129 lbs.
• Posts: 740Member Member
cbihatt wrote: »
Generally speaking, you burn about 100 calories per mile. If your treadmill estimate is close to that, then it’s probably close enough.

Sorry, not even close to that walking...

If you use Runner's Worlds formula of .30 x weight in lbs x distance in miles you would be burning (net) about 39 cal per mile walked at 129 lbs.

Which Runner's World formula is that? That comes off as incredibly low rate.
• Posts: 1,319Member Member
cbihatt wrote: »
Generally speaking, you burn about 100 calories per mile. If your treadmill estimate is close to that, then it’s probably close enough.

Sorry, not even close to that walking...

If you use Runner's Worlds formula of .30 x weight in lbs x distance in miles you would be burning (net) about 39 cal per mile walked at 129 lbs.

Which Runner's World formula is that? That comes off as incredibly low rate.

No, that's accurate. At roughly 150 lbs, you burn close to 100 calories per mile RUNNING. Walking is far more efficient, and OP is lighter than average.
• Posts: 8,732Member Member
cbihatt wrote: »
Generally speaking, you burn about 100 calories per mile. If your treadmill estimate is close to that, then it’s probably close enough.

Sorry, not even close to that walking...

If you use Runner's Worlds formula of .30 x weight in lbs x distance in miles you would be burning (net) about 39 cal per mile walked at 129 lbs.

Which Runner's World formula is that? That comes off as incredibly low rate.

I'll have to go digging through my article archive but based on lab testing Runners World published the following formulae for net calories expended (ie additional calories directly attributable to exercise) all measurements in imperial

Running: .63 x weight x distance (hence the 150 lb runner averaging 100 cal / mile)

Walking .30 x weight x distance

These also assume relatively flat terrain and were observed in lab conditions. Interestingly my Garmin estimates within 10% of the running formula when taking ihto account my weight, distance traveled, speed & elevation changes.
• Posts: 200Member Member
That formula is handy - how come stupid MapMyWalk gives such a higher result (I know I am small, but even using my husband's weight, it is an overestimate).
• Posts: 15,264Member Member
That formula is handy - how come stupid MapMyWalk gives such a higher result (I know I am small, but even using my husband's weight, it is an overestimate).

@Pipsqueak1965

MapMyWalk gives you a gross calorie estimate (what you would have burned in the duration of the exercise anyway plus the calories from the exercise) - not the net calorie estimate (from the exercise only) people should really be using.
• Posts: 200Member Member
@sijomial - why thank you! That explains a lot! I thought it was far too much.
• Posts: 236Member Member
cbihatt wrote: »
Generally speaking, you burn about 100 calories per mile. If your treadmill estimate is close to that, then it’s probably close enough.

Sorry, not even close to that walking...

If you use Runner's Worlds formula of .30 x weight in lbs x distance in miles you would be burning (net) about 39 cal per mile walked at 129 lbs.

Directly from a Runner’s World article: “Running a mile and walking a mile aren’t going to burn dramatically different calorie amounts, says Alex Harrison, Ph.D., a USA Track & Field-certified run coach and sport performance coach for Renaissance Periodization. However, it’s going to take you a lot longer to do the latter—and so the caloric difference between walking and running comes down to how many calories you burn per minute, not per mile.”

Since all calorie burns are estimates anyway, I have no interest in attempting to figure out a more exact number. In addition, how do you determine running vs walking? By speed? Would a slow runner use the walking formula? What about a very fast runner?

All that to say, I stand by my first post. 100 calories per mile is probably close enough.

• Posts: 16,973Member Member
I think MMW estimate is even worse than the difference in BMR between Gross & NET though.

I used them a long time ago so not sure if changes, but I recall elevation gain/loss didn't seem to explain it, as I'd get the same calories for flatter compared to hillier routes.

And that was with mapped distance which was correct, not GPS distance which could be off depending on route.

Wondering if they are purely going for the feel-good effect - show you a big burn, hope you keep doing it.
edited September 9
• Posts: 16,973Member Member
cbihatt wrote: »
cbihatt wrote: »
Generally speaking, you burn about 100 calories per mile. If your treadmill estimate is close to that, then it’s probably close enough.

Sorry, not even close to that walking...

If you use Runner's Worlds formula of .30 x weight in lbs x distance in miles you would be burning (net) about 39 cal per mile walked at 129 lbs.

Directly from a Runner’s World article: “Running a mile and walking a mile aren’t going to burn dramatically different calorie amounts, says Alex Harrison, Ph.D., a USA Track & Field-certified run coach and sport performance coach for Renaissance Periodization. However, it’s going to take you a lot longer to do the latter—and so the caloric difference between walking and running comes down to how many calories you burn per minute, not per mile.”

Since all calorie burns are estimates anyway, I have no interest in attempting to figure out a more exact number. In addition, how do you determine running vs walking? By speed? Would a slow runner use the walking formula? What about a very fast runner?

All that to say, I stand by my first post. 100 calories per mile is probably close enough.

Running vs walking is pretty set - if a foot remains on the ground at all times - walking. If not - running.

Hence some pretty intense looking race walking, and some pretty slow looking running.

There is a difference though, slight as it may be, that may matter if you do a lot of walking.

https://exrx.net/Aerobic/WalkCalExp

Your rough formula fails to take into account mass - which is pretty major component, and since most know their's, why not include it.

Do you treat the food logging as loosely?

ETA: if you check out the link first provided in this topic - it explains exactly what range of speed/pace is valid for the formula used to be accurate.
edited September 9
• Posts: 236Member Member
heybales wrote: »
cbihatt wrote: »
cbihatt wrote: »
Generally speaking, you burn about 100 calories per mile. If your treadmill estimate is close to that, then it’s probably close enough.

Sorry, not even close to that walking...

If you use Runner's Worlds formula of .30 x weight in lbs x distance in miles you would be burning (net) about 39 cal per mile walked at 129 lbs.

Directly from a Runner’s World article: “Running a mile and walking a mile aren’t going to burn dramatically different calorie amounts, says Alex Harrison, Ph.D., a USA Track & Field-certified run coach and sport performance coach for Renaissance Periodization. However, it’s going to take you a lot longer to do the latter—and so the caloric difference between walking and running comes down to how many calories you burn per minute, not per mile.”

Since all calorie burns are estimates anyway, I have no interest in attempting to figure out a more exact number. In addition, how do you determine running vs walking? By speed? Would a slow runner use the walking formula? What about a very fast runner?

All that to say, I stand by my first post. 100 calories per mile is probably close enough.

Running vs walking is pretty set - if a foot remains on the ground at all times - walking. If not - running.

Hence some pretty intense looking race walking, and some pretty slow looking running.

There is a difference though, slight as it may be, that may matter if you do a lot of walking.

https://exrx.net/Aerobic/WalkCalExp

Your rough formula fails to take into account mass - which is pretty major component, and since most know their's, why not include it.

Do you treat the food logging as loosely?

ETA: if you check out the link first provided in this topic - it explains exactly what range of speed/pace is valid for the formula used to be accurate.

To the boldest: Yes, pretty much. I use the evil measuring cup for some things and I sometimes log things a gram more or less than what I actually ate. I even estimate whole meals when I go out to restaurants.

I am aware that my method is not the popular one that most people adhere to on MFP. But it works for me, and it much less stressful to my mind. I guess I just don’t understand the need to try to break everything down into minute details when it’s the big picture that is more important.

But, as to the rest, the OP can feel free to ignore my calorie burn estimate. I was just trying to help. 🤷‍♀️
• Posts: 15,264Member Member
heybales wrote: »
I think MMW estimate is even worse than the difference in BMR between Gross & NET though.

I used them a long time ago so not sure if changes, but I recall elevation gain/loss didn't seem to explain it, as I'd get the same calories for flatter compared to hillier routes.

And that was with mapped distance which was correct, not GPS distance which could be off depending on route.

Wondering if they are purely going for the feel-good effect - show you a big burn, hope you keep doing it.

@heybales

I vaguely recall that MMW changed their method/algorithm of estimating calories earlier this year.
I believe they now use the same METS values as Myfitnesspal does.

Their previous estimates appeared to be sourcing the works of Hans Christian Andersen rather than the Compendium of Physical Activities.
• Posts: 8,061Member Member
Deleted
edited September 10
All I know is, the treadmill I use is probably set for a 180-200 lb man, and I'm a 125-129 pound (middle aged) woman. It tells me that I have burned like 300 calories in half an hour, never breaking into a jog, and I knew that was absurd. But the other sources tell me it's actually closer to 90 calories - wahh, not even a hundred?

So much for fantasizing about a grilled tomato and cheese sandwich for lunch to "replace" those 300 calories!

Thanks for all the insights, everyone. I've not been on MFP for a week yet, and I'm already learning a lot.
• Posts: 16,973Member Member
All I know is, the treadmill I use is probably set for a 180-200 lb man, and I'm a 125-129 pound (middle aged) woman. It tells me that I have burned like 300 calories in half an hour, never breaking into a jog, and I knew that was absurd. But the other sources tell me it's actually closer to 90 calories - wahh, not even a hundred?

So much for fantasizing about a grilled tomato and cheese sandwich for lunch to "replace" those 300 calories!

Thanks for all the insights, everyone. I've not been on MFP for a week yet, and I'm already learning a lot.

you can't enter a weight before you start using it?