Since I've started running I've noticed that my appetite has gone up incredibly.I need to know how much I can eat to stave off the hunger while staying under my caloric burn. Is there a way to calculate how many calories you burn during interval running (run 2 minutes walk 3 minutes, etc)?

I've worked very hard to drop a significant amount of weight, and while being hungry is unpleasant, I don't want to overeat and start putting the weight back on for sure. Additionally, I still have a few pounds left to lose.

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    I'd simply be patient until you're able to regularly run 5k, then you should be well above the minimum caloric uptake required to feel comfortable.
    – Ivo Flipse
    Mar 24, 2011 at 23:28
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    I'd just eat healthy and not worry about the calories. Weigh yourself each week and see what you get - tweak as you see fit. If you are an emotional eater, avoid any foods that might trigger you to over indulge. I know a guy is incredibly fit now and he refuses to eat pizza ever b/c it's what got him obese (not fat, but truly obese). Keep logging those miles!
    – Rhea
    Mar 25, 2011 at 4:19

1 Answer 1


For a decent estimate, figure out the total number of minutes you spent walking and the total amount you spent running, and multiply each by the appropriate number of Calories/minute (Here is a site with some speed vs. energy expenditure charts). If you don't know how fast you run/walk find a measured track (they're usually 200 or 400m) and time yourself. Many smartphones have good enough GPS to give you your running speed too.

This calculation is a little bit of an oversimplification since your energy expenditure will remain elevated throughout the walking interval. If you're willing to put a bit of money into it, get a GPS/heart rate monitor. The good ones combine a number of factors to estimate your caloric expenditure. I have an older one, and although the GPS can't handle being under any tree cover whatsoever, it's an awesome training tool for running on the road.

I think this next bit is negligible, but for completeness: even using a GPS/heart rate monitor wont factor in the calories you burn due to an elevated metabolism after exercising. This study compared the calories burned after running continuously or with high-intensity (anaerobic) intervals. The people who did the high-intensity intervals burned about twice as many extra calories in the nine hours post-exercise: 64 vs. 32 additional Calories. Since the subjects were all 21-year-old males, these numbers probably aren't generalizable to the general population, but they at least give you a ballpark idea.

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