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SPORTS NUTRITION:

How much does exercise offset those holiday meals?

You're with friends and family that you haven't seen in some time. Frequently, the focal point of the gathering is the meal. Well, what does the meal add up to in calories and how much exercise do you have to do to burn those calories? Here's some food for thought.

ITEMAMOUNTCALORIES

red wine

3.5 ounces

75

white wine

3.5 ounces

80

regular beer

12 ounces

160

light beer

12 ounces

95

80 proof alcohol

1.5 ounces

95

90 proof alcohol

1.5 ounces

110

egg nog

8 ounces

340

cola

12 ounces

160

fruit soda

12 ounces

150-180

fruit punch

8 ounces

113

whole milk

8 ounces

150

2% milk

8 ounces

120

skim milk

8 ounces

85

canned cranberry sauce

1 cup

420

bread stuffing

1 cup

420

black eyed peas

1 cup

190

string beans

1 cup

45

brussel sprouts

1 cup

60

carrots

1 cup

35

corn

1 cup

135

peas

1 cup

125

mashed potatoes

1 cup

225

baked sweet potatoes

1 potatoe

115

canned sweet potatoes

1 cup

260

white meat turkey

3 ounces (2 slices, 1/4")

135

dark meat turkey

3 ounces

160

roast beef

3 ounces (1/4" thick)

315

gravy

1/2 cup

95

cheese cake

1 slice

280

apple pie

1 slice (1/6 9"pie)

405

pumpkin pie

1 slice

320

choc. chip cookie

4 21/2" diameter

180

sugar cookies

4

235

oatmeal cookies

4

245

shortbread cookies

4

155

Now if you add up the calories for a holiday meal, along with the drinks, and deserts - and this doesn't even include those caloric depositories called appetizers - a realistic intake is over 2000 calories at a single sitting. That's right, 2000 calories. When we calculated this we considered 2 beers, 1 glass of wine, 1 piece of apple pie and no cookies in our total!!

If you are a 150 pound person feeling a little guilty about all that, you might consider taking a walk. If you walk 3 miles in 45 minutes (not too shabby, and you've waited at least one hour since eating) you will have burned off less than 1 sixth of that meal - 300 calories. That's the bad news.

Here are some other equivalents for exercise for a 150 pound person in better than average condition. (These are approximations and will vary from one individual to another, but you'll get the point)

EXERCISE TYPETIMECALORIES

walk, 15 min/mile

60 min

400

golf, walking

270 min

600

jogging 10 min/mile

60 min

660

skiing - alpine

120 min

660

skiing x-country

60 min

420

tennie, singles

60 min

420

basketball

60 min

540

rowing

60 min

700

stationary cycling

60 min

600

weight lifting

60  min

350

stair climber

60 min

600

chopping wood

60 min

444

raking leaves

60 min

200

snow shoveling

60 min

700

 

Conclusions

Excess intake of calories around the holidays is only partially offset by exercise. The levels of caloric expenditure above are for a relatively fit individual, and it is unlikely that someone who does little physical activity will be able to attain these expenditures. The best plan is to exercise restraint in eating and drinking. It will take as much exercise exercise as one individual can normally do in one week to work off one average holiday meal.