Monday, June 21, 2010

Your Elliptical is Lying to You

Hey, pssst! Come here.  I gotta tell you something.  You know that little screen on your elliptical machine, the one that tells you how many calories you burned?  It's a lie.  It's all a lie! 

I've always known that those little calories-burned estimators on treadmills, bikes, ellipticals, etc. were inaccurate.  Even if you type in your weight and your age and whatnot, it's just an estimate based on a lot of assumptions.  But still, it feels really good to see  "YOU BURNED 450 CALORIES!" on the little screen at the end of a sweaty workout, doesn't it?  Yeah, I like it too. 

It's kind of like getting a sympathy compliment on a really bad haircut.  You know it's not true, but it still feels nice to hear it.

That's why I was kinda bummed out to learn when I plugged in my handy little GoWearFit after a workout that I was only burning half of what I estimated.  I knew I wasn't exactly a furnace, but it was a numbing reality check to see that for the time I put in, the burn was less than thrilling.

So - what I've learned about myself from my GoWearFit this week:  it really does take an hour of hard cardio a day to burn enough calories to maintain my weight.  Sorry folks.

I guess an hour a day keeps the pounds away!  So....what are you doing still reading this?  Get moving! :)

Good day!


Christy said...

Have you compared your workout on a machine to a track/outside yet? I was amazed to see the difference. I burn so many more calories on a track - even over the stair treadmill which kicks my behind every time.

The (not so) Reluctant Athlete said...

I was shocked too! When I workout on the elliptical, its a good burn, but outside running is WAY higher. I don't know if it is the warmer air or what but it really motivates me to get outside!

Christy said...

My theory is that no matter how hard you are working, or what you have the resistance set at, the machine is still doing part of the work for you.

On an indoor track or outside it is all you propelling yourself forward.