Do you trust the calories burned that MFP says that you burned during an exercise?

I'm trying to figure out the whole km stuff, I'm just wondering if I should trust it or not.
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Replies

  • most people half what it tells you you burned as it does tend to overestimate in the high range.so If it says you burned 500 cut it down to 250,
  • Golbat
    Golbat Posts: 276 Member
    I don't track exercise on MFP. I go to the gym regularly, but I don't work out that hard. I would track it if I were doing extreme amounts of exercise, because I'd need more food, but that isn't where I am.
  • Misspinklift
    Misspinklift Posts: 384 Member
    No! I burn 150-250 in 30 mins depending on the intensity the work out is. MFP over estimate the calorie burned. I see a lot of MFP friends believe in it and I don't say a word. I think you need to use some common sense in this area. Then again it isn't my place to point this out. Their fitness journey, not mine.
  • sweetcore
    sweetcore Posts: 13 Member
    Completely agree with Nadine and Charlie. I have a fitbit so it tells me how many calories burned during my workouts, then transfers to myfitnesspal. I would say that myfitnesspal is not very accurate, but for me it is a difference of about 50-150 calories most times. I think it also depends on the person and how hard their body deals with exercise, and how much they weigh.
  • RoxieDawn
    RoxieDawn Posts: 15,490 Member
    No.. there are way too many variables that MFP cannot possibly calculate through the exercise you performed. Eat back a portion or percentage.. Trend your weight loss over period of time and increase or decrease the amount you choose to eat back based on your rate of loss.
  • Kelbelb75
    Kelbelb75 Posts: 90 Member
    edited September 2016
    I used to believe MFP till i got a fitness tracker. Cals burned out by at least 200...such a shame lol coz i love those big numbers.
  • quiltlovinlisa
    quiltlovinlisa Posts: 1,710 Member
    No. I tend to record an activity that burns less. Like if I've been doing aerobics with jumping, I record low-impact aerobics.
  • Machka9
    Machka9 Posts: 22,214 Member
    When I log, I choose the "light" or "slow" options even if I feel like I did a big workout. I also round the time down -- knock 5 or 10 minutes off what I think I did. And that seems to match my husband's Strava information fairly well.
  • Asher_Ethan
    Asher_Ethan Posts: 2,430 Member
    I use to put in half the time I worked out unless I was running. MFP running options seemed to match what my hrm said during steady state cardio.
  • gothchiq
    gothchiq Posts: 4,592 Member
    I have no idea honestly. I eat back only half of the cals it gives me just to be safe.
  • TavistockToad
    TavistockToad Posts: 35,731 Member
    I have been on mfp for 5 years and always used their calorie burn, eaten back my exercise cals and successfully lost weight.

    I now have a HRM for running and my cals are pretty close to what mfp used to give me.

    I think the problem a lot of people have is they over estimate the intensity of their workout when they log it, and tend to log cleaning etc instead of using the activity level correctly.
  • playmadcats
    playmadcats Posts: 199 Member
    No I usually log half the time to be safe. However when I compare the low intensity exercise they seem to be only a few calories out. ( leisurely walks, aqua, body balance etc). Really don't believe any that say I'm burning 600+ and am dubious on several of the 400-500 ones too.
  • sijomial
    sijomial Posts: 19,859 Member
    edited September 2016
    Some MFP estimates are good, some are low, some are high, some are ludicrously high.

    Apply some common sense. Use or at least investigate a variety of methods appropriate to your particular exercise, MFP will be appropriate for some and a wild guess for others.

    That advice also applies to people who put blind faith into the numbers given by various gadgets including HRMs. Understand the limitations of your particular gadget.

  • Ninjaeema
    Ninjaeema Posts: 21 Member
    I have been on mfp for 5 years and always used their calorie burn, eaten back I think the problem a lot of people have is they over estimate the intensity of their workout when they log it, and tend to log cleaning etc instead of using the activity level correctly.

    I agree with this completely. I feel like the calorie burn numbers are accurate for me, but I'm also accurately logging my exercise. I make sure to check my heart rate when I cycle, so that I'm actually hitting 140+ and logging as such.
  • Ninjaeema wrote: »
    I have been on mfp for 5 years and always used their calorie burn, eaten back I think the problem a lot of people have is they over estimate the intensity of their workout when they log it, and tend to log cleaning etc instead of using the activity level correctly.

    I agree with this completely. I feel like the calorie burn numbers are accurate for me, but I'm also accurately logging my exercise. I make sure to check my heart rate when I cycle, so that I'm actually hitting 140+ and logging as such.

    heart rate has no indication of how many calories you burn.
  • jlklem
    jlklem Posts: 259 Member
    The cycling estimates are way way off...almost 200-300 calories per hour (to high). I only bike and have been racing and riding with a powermeter for 13+ years...I also know my cycling efficiency (21-22%) on the bike which helps me really understand my calorie burn.

    Also the difference between 16 mph and 19 mph is pretty large...I can average 16 mph and ride for an hour and burn 380 calories (I actually do this type of ride twice a week). To average 19 on the same course its closer to 500-600 per hour. I averaged 20.2 for 5 hours yesterday and only burned 775 calories per hour (202 watts average for the 5 hours).

    Running is a different story as 100-110 calories per mile works for most people...a little more if you are running, a little less if you are walking.

    I have no idea about other activities.
  • Christine_72
    Christine_72 Posts: 16,051 Member
    Ninjaeema wrote: »
    I have been on mfp for 5 years and always used their calorie burn, eaten back I think the problem a lot of people have is they over estimate the intensity of their workout when they log it, and tend to log cleaning etc instead of using the activity level correctly.

    I agree with this completely. I feel like the calorie burn numbers are accurate for me, but I'm also accurately logging my exercise. I make sure to check my heart rate when I cycle, so that I'm actually hitting 140+ and logging as such.

    heart rate has no indication of how many calories you burn.

    Then what is the point of having a HR tracker? I have a fitbit Alta, no HR monitor.
  • robertw486
    robertw486 Posts: 2,344 Member
    sijomial wrote: »
    Some MFP estimates are good, some are low, some are high, some are ludicrously high.

    Apply some common sense. Use or at least investigate a variety of methods appropriate to your particular exercise, MFP will be appropriate for some and a wild guess for others.

    That advice also applies to people who put blind faith into the numbers given by various gadgets including HRMs. Understand the limitations of your particular gadget.

    This x10.

    There are so many entries that are single entries for an exercise regardless of intensity that this alone should be a big red flag. Per MFP estimates, elliptical is elliptical, and the only thing that changes the calorie burn is your weight. I've seen some estimates here and there that seem reasonable, but would probably still fall short of an estimate from the proper apps.

    As a great example of this, look at how many biking and running calorie burn estimates fall into categories that allow for a decent speed variance, but within that variance calculate the same. Bike at 15.99 MPH and your calorie burn would be quite a bit lower than the same time at 16 MPH.


    But without some looking into things, I would suggest that any person hoping to find any reasonably accurate calorie burn avoid any blanket statements about the estimates on MFP. It might be exact for one person, off for the next, depending on their sizes and intensity of workout within a category.
  • zyxst
    zyxst Posts: 9,131 Member
    I use a calculator that removes my BMR from the exercise burn and log that number on MFP.
  • Ninjaeema wrote: »
    I have been on mfp for 5 years and always used their calorie burn, eaten back I think the problem a lot of people have is they over estimate the intensity of their workout when they log it, and tend to log cleaning etc instead of using the activity level correctly.

    I agree with this completely. I feel like the calorie burn numbers are accurate for me, but I'm also accurately logging my exercise. I make sure to check my heart rate when I cycle, so that I'm actually hitting 140+ and logging as such.

    heart rate has no indication of how many calories you burn.

    Then what is the point of having a HR tracker? I have a fitbit Alta, no HR monitor.

    its to monitor heart rate basically and thats all. its good for those who need to watch how high or low their heart rate goes. for example say a person who is 300 lbs gets their heart rate up to 150 and burns say 400 calories, a person who does the same exercise for the same amount of time and has the same heart rate in most cases wont burn the same amount of calories due to less mass. if you get scared and your heart rate goes up do you burn calories? probably but Im sure its not much if any to count. heart rate is just an indicator of how hard you are working and how hard your heart is working to pump blood and so on. sure you will burn calories but its not going to be an indicator of how many calories you will burn.not to mention HRM arent all that accurate either,and are only to be used for steady state cardio at that. I have done exercises where I got my heart rate up pretty high and yet didnt burn as many calories as I thought I did according to my fitbit charge HR.