Calculating Calories Burned From Physical Activity
Table 4 in Concept 7 provides estimates of the calories burned for a variety of different lifestyle activities. These calculations are relatively easy to make for other activities if you know the MET value. All you need to remember is the following relationship:
Calories = METS x weight (kg) x time (hours)
For example, to estimate how many calories a 150 lb. (~70 kg) person would burn during 30 minutes of gardening (5 METS), use the calculation below:
Calories burned = 5 x 68.2 kg x .5 hour = 170.5
Notes:
Because 1 MET is equal to 1 kcal / kg / hour it is relatively easy to calculate energy expenditure of different physical activities. Using the formula above, you can estimate the energy expenditure value for any activity as long as you know the METS.
Note: The calculation only works with weight in kilograms. To get kilograms from pounds divide pounds by 2.2. The calculation also requires that time be in hours. If the activity is only 15 minutes, you would use .25 hours.