Out celebrity fitness programmer and TV personality Craig Ramsay.

Burn it off! Cut out counting calories in exchange for exercise

Are you counting calories as part of a New Year’s plan for a new you? Studies show this may not be the most effective way to lose weight.

When shown how much exercise is needed to burn off just one soda, teens were more likely to go without the sugary drink, according to John Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health research published in October.

In a study conducted between August 2012 and June 2013, researchers at the Bloomberg School posted signs in six Baltimore corner stores in low-income, predominantly black neighborhoods saying it would take 50 minutes—or five miles—of running to burn off the 250 calories in a 20-ounce bottle of cola or a sports drink, or even fruit juice. After those signs were posted, the numbers dropped significantly in sugary beverage purchases—from 98 percent to 89 percent.

So let’s take a look at what you have to do to burn off the junk food, and maybe next time you’ll just say no.


A ‘whopper’ of calories


A McDonald’s Big Mac Meal has 1,411 calories. Nutritionists in Great Britain crunched the numbers and say you have to walk 9.5 miles to burn off that burger, fries and soda. To burn off just the 550 calorie Big Mac? A 2013 Texas Christian University says it would take a 155-pound woman cycling about an hour to burn off that two all beef patties, special sauce lettuce cheese pickles onions on a sesame seed bun.






20-ounce coke




Sugar-laden soft drinks

A 20-ounce Coca-Cola contains 250 calories. Run five miles or walk for about 50 minutes to burn off that icy cold Coke.








Out celebrity trainer Craig Ramsay has plenty of tips on how to burn off those “cheat meals” in a series of videos he films for ulive.com, a website with plenty of lifestyle videos. Titled “Eat It & Burn It,” the videos star some of Ramsay’s friends, such as drag icon Coco Peru, and puts them (or their friends) through a special workout to burn off those favorite unhealthy snacks.


Shedding the slice
tertert4565How much to burn off a piece of pepperoni pizza?

One slice is about 440 calories, says Ramsay, and to be able to eat it and burn it means

• 2 hours of walking

• 50 minutes of jogging

• 40 minutes of swimming

But in his videos, Ramsay cuts through the fat, if you will, and devises a specific workout that burns the calories in three sets of fairly strenuous 10-minute bursts of exercise, or about 100 calories in 10 minutes. So, to burn off a piece of pizza means 10 minutes of “Chicago-Style Deep-Dish Dips,” 10 minutes of “Kneaded Out Knees,” and 10 minutes of “Pie Pop Roll It Up.”

“I divided the total calories of each cheat meal by three exercises and tested the exercise program- ming while wearing the wrist calorie counter to get a general idea of how long each exercise would take,” Ramsay says.


Curbing the cupcake calories

Red-Velvet-Cup-CakesEA red velvet cupcake runs you about 500 calories. To burn it means

• 2 hours of walking

• 1 hour and 15 minutes of cycling

• 1 hour jogging

Or, with Ramsay’s training, you can eat that cupcake and then do 10 minutes of “Red Velvet Rope
Jumps,” 20 minutes of “Clowning
Around” (elbow to knee exercises), and a front plank position for 2 hours.



Downgrade the doughnuts

donutsA Krispy Kreme doughnut runs about 300 calories. That’s

• 30 minutes of walking

• 20 minutes of cycling

• 15 minutes of jogging

Or, with Ramsay, check out his 10 minutes of “Critter Fritter Crawls,” 10 minutes
of “Bear Claw Claps,” and
10 minutes of “Kick-the-Habit Leg Kicks.”