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Burning Calories with Sports and Sex

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Everyone knows that the surest way to burn calories – and lose weight – is to use more energy than you consume. Burning fat is not the only reason for getting active – regular exercise reduces your risk of heart disease. And one of the easiest, most accessible ways to burn calories is by brisk jogging – an adult weighing 75kg burns 430 calories in a moderately-paced 30 minute run (or 1/5 of the recommended daily caloric intake). But what other activities compare to that?

If you have joint issues, running/jogging may not be a great option. Boxing and canoeing actually burn more calories than running for the same amount of time, however both require extra gear and space (which in Singapore terms means extra $$) to practice. The next best activities are cycling and swimming, both of which burn roughly the same amount of calories, though oddly, going for a round on the exercise bike burns more (perhaps it has to do with spinning classes). In terms of ball sports, playing football burns more calories than basketball or tennis, which makes sense since you’re running around an entire field.

Of course, the body uses energy even when stationary – and the heavier you are, the more you burn. However, sitting around all day isn’t great for you, so you can at least do some chores like vacuuming or ironing; funny enough, both burn more energy than having sex. Then again, you’ll need 3 hours of sex to burn as much calories as a 30-minute run.

For your viewing pleasure, the folks at the Economist has broken down a list of activities and their relative caloric expenditure in a handy table:

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