Calories and steps! How many days of walking/hiking in the Himalayas does ONE Christmas lunch translate to?

  • JD Pillay
  • W Brown
Keywords: Energy intake, physical activity, energy expenditure, pedometer


Background. The festive season is a time when people are at risk of overeating and weight gain. An active break during this time can help maintain energy balance.

Objectives. To determine steps taken during a walk/hike to Everest Base Camp and back and compare estimated activityrelated energy expenditure to a typical Christmas lunch.

Methods. Five adults (39‑70 years) completed an 11‑day walk/hike. Pedometer-measured steps were recorded at two cadences: ‘aerobic’ (>100 steps/minute for 10 consecutive minutes) or ‘slower’ steps. Activity-related energy expenditure was estimated using generic values for walking uphill/downhill at each cadence. Energy intake of a typical Christmas lunch was estimated.

Results. Participants accumulated a total of 143 770 steps, or 13 070 (SD 8 272) steps/day, 20% of which were ‘aerobic’. Total walk-related energy expenditure was estimated at 22 816 kcals, or 1 901 (SD 580) kcals/day.

Conclusion. Estimated energy intake in one Christmas lunch equates to 1.7 days of walking/hiking.

Keywords. Energy intake, physical activity, energy expenditure, pedometer


Journal Identifiers

eISSN: 2078-516X
print ISSN: 1015-5163