Burning calories Question

How do you prepare for the rigorous physical requirements of high elevation adventure? Strength and endurance are key, but are only part of a more complex equation. How do you prepare for changes in altitude, exposure, diet, etc.? How do you mentally prepare? Learn from others and share what you know about training in advance for outdoor adventures.
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dave54
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Re: Burning calories Question

Post by dave54 » Tue Apr 04, 2017 11:18 am

rlown wrote:what about if you're 140lbs and carrying a 36lb pack?...
The same as a 176 lb person. You burn about the same calories whether the weight is on your back or inside your skin.
BTW if you are 140lbs naked on the scale, do not forget to add the weight of your clothes and shoes. The pack is not the only weight your body is carrying.

Many now recommend calculating calories per mile instead of per hour -- more accurate. Per hour does not factor in speed (you burn more calories the faster you hike, but then you are covering the miles in less time). Using per mile is independent of speed.

Factoring in slope is more problematic. If it is round trip then ignore slope. The extra effort involved in going uphill is mostly offset by the lesser effort needed going downhill. Not completely offset, but close enough for quick estimates.

Of course, the old adage says the best exercise to lose weight is pushaways at the dinner table. ;)


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oldranger
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Re: Burning calories Question

Post by oldranger » Tue Apr 04, 2017 9:47 pm

Been wearing a fitbit lately and have found that drinking beer and reeling in fish lefthanded are great ways to get lots of steps in!
Mike

Who can't do everything he used to and what he can do takes a hell of a lot longer!

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John Harper
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Re: Burning calories Question

Post by John Harper » Wed Jun 06, 2018 12:03 pm

rlown wrote:oh.. you haven't experienced Metoprolol or Lisinopril yet.
What's with Lisinopril? I've been on it a couple years, no issues. I had no idea my BP was so high, diet always good, plenty of exercise, no weight issues. Doc told me it was genetics.

John

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Re: Burning calories Question

Post by Wandering Daisy » Tue Oct 23, 2018 9:17 pm

I have just been trying out a lot of those on-line calorie calculators to see what they say the calories I burn in a typical backpack day. I sort of already know this based on the calories I actually take in my rations and weight loss over the summer season. Problem is, these calculators seem to under-estimate the calories I burn. I have a spreadsheet for my rations so I know exactly how many calories I take, what I do not eat when I come back, and how much weight I loose for the summer. According to those basal metabolic calculators, my base calories are only 1200 calories a day. I ration 2,200-2,400 calories per day on trips and over a 10 day trip will loose about 1-2 pounds. But I then eat normally back in town, so over the entire backpack season will lose 5-8 pounds. It takes me until about Christmas to gain that back.

The on-line calculators assume sidewalks or smooth surface trails. The missing pieces of the puzzle to apply these to backpacking is the elevation gain and off-trail travel. I think we do a lot of mini-elevation gain off trail stepping over obstacles. I also think individual basal metabolic rate varies with people, even if they are of the same age, weight, height and gender. Another unknown is how your digestion actually uptakes calories. According to those charts, I am supposed to gain weight with what I eat backpacking, not loose weight!

Regarding the statement that elevation gain and loss equal out: I disagree that uphill miles and downhill miles even out the difference between walking on the flat and going up and down. For me, going downhill is a bit easier, but I still have to exert a lot of effort to counter balance gravity and that takes energy, especially with a pack on my back. I mean, I am really leaning on my poles, exerting energy.

Just saying that all that theory is interesting, but simply paying attention to my weight, and tweaking my exercise and eating off-season works for me. My upper limit is 118 pounds. At that point, if I still gain, I exercise more and eat less. My alarm bell is 120- at which point I do an actual short term diet. Interesting, but I do not really NEED to know exactly how many calories my walking or bicycling burn. I think we over-value exercise for weight loss. I have to walk 5 miles at 3.5 mph (my dog walk) to burn off one piece of apple pie or two servings of wine. Exercise is more important simply to keep our muscles in shape so we can continue backpacking, particularly as we get older.

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Re: Burning calories Question

Post by freestone » Wed Oct 24, 2018 10:12 am

There is another way of burning additional calories and its called stress. If you are stressed in your life, you're burning calories, chess players burn up to 600 additional calories by just sitting there worrying about their next move. Stressed about that apple pie? Good, you are burning calories by doing so.
“Short cuts make long delays.”
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Re: Burning calories Question

Post by Wandering Daisy » Wed Oct 24, 2018 12:55 pm

I am not sure exactly what you define as stress. If I am hauling a pack uphill, breathing hard, is that stress? What about the hour or so moderate pain at the end of the day after carrying a pack all day? Or is it only mental stress. Worrying? I am a very fidgety sleeper, perhaps I burn more calories than normal during sleep. I am a bit concerned about weight gain in the winter, but more concerned during the backpack season about weight loss. I do think a few fat reserves are useful while backpacking. Mine get depleted by mid-season.

Also, after using my I-phone to record "steps", I realize, at least at home, I get a lot of steps simply fussing around my house. I am not one that likes sitting still, and if I really think about in-camp time, I do a lot of getting up and down, walking, fussing, fishing, etc. None of that is accounted for. So how many calories do you think we burn backpacking, while in camp, not hiking?

Could also be error in my "Calories In" side of the equation. I have been looking at glycemic index vs. glycemic load charts. The load increases significantly the more you cook food. I am curious if this makes a difference. To save fuel, I cook food less than I normally would at home. Theoretically this produces less "load". Does that mean I am actually absorbing fewer calories from my food?

I am a bit mystified because I eat way more than my husband, who nearly weighs twice I do, yet I am either stable or loose weight and he gains. I have been this way all my life. Four years and two children later, I was 10 pounds less than I started (quite the opposite of most women) and it took 20 years to gain back what I lost. People used to tease me that I "ate like a bird- like a vulture". Although I am thankful I do not have to battle weight gain, I do worry about looking like one of those starving African children at the end of backpack season.

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freestone
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Re: Burning calories Question

Post by freestone » Wed Oct 24, 2018 1:51 pm

Stress could be defined as anything that raises the heart rate so going up a mountain pass trail would also be stress. Professional chess players raise their heart rates too but in a different way and are burning just as many calories. Mountain climbers are probably stressed by the climb and the the stress fear from falling may cause (at least for me!). Metabolism (rate and efficiency) is such an individualized function, I would be cautious on using any sort of chart or making comparisons to others.The body burns a huge amount of calories just to stay at 98.6 degrees and our opportunity to exercise for the sole purpose of burning calories is so minor that its almost not even worth it. I think if everyone just stayed in motion all day, there would be no need to diet unless they had an unhealthy diet to start with. Theres a lot of wisdom in "you are what you eat" and "all things in moderation" including bad habits and exercise.
“Short cuts make long delays.”
― J.R.R. Tolkien, The Fellowship of the Ring

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Re: Burning calories Question

Post by longri » Fri Nov 09, 2018 4:40 pm

freestone wrote:
Wed Oct 24, 2018 10:12 am
There is another way of burning additional calories and its called stress. If you are stressed in your life, you're burning calories, chess players burn up to 600 additional calories by just sitting there worrying about their next move. Stressed about that apple pie? Good, you are burning calories by doing so.

A meaningless claim without numbers.

Blinking your eyes at an increased frequency burns more calories too. Just not very much.

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Re: Burning calories Question

Post by freestone » Sat Nov 10, 2018 8:15 am

longri wrote:
Fri Nov 09, 2018 4:40 pm
freestone wrote:
Wed Oct 24, 2018 10:12 am
There is another way of burning additional calories and its called stress. If you are stressed in your life, you're burning calories, chess players burn up to 600 additional calories by just sitting there worrying about their next move. Stressed about that apple pie? Good, you are burning calories by doing so.

A meaningless claim without numbers.

Blinking your eyes at an increased frequency burns more calories too. Just not very much.
https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-34323643

Google Chess players, Robert Sapolsky and stress.
“Short cuts make long delays.”
― J.R.R. Tolkien, The Fellowship of the Ring

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longri
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Re: Burning calories Question

Post by longri » Sat Nov 10, 2018 8:48 am

freestone wrote:
Sat Nov 10, 2018 8:15 am
https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-34323643

Google Chess players, Robert Sapolsky and stress.

Yes, I've seen that already. The notion appears to hinge almost entirely on an off hand comment made by one man during a TED talk.

7000 Cal per day playing chess? Extraordinary claims require strong evidence.


Where's the beef?

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