Casey is a Northern Virginia-based health and wellness coach for women & men who want to feel their absolute best.

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The Difference Between Active & Total Calories - coachingwithcasey.com

ACTIVE vs. TOTAL CALORIES

We have all been there, you’re in the middle of exercising and you glance down at your apple watch to check in on your progress.

If you’re like me, then you mostly care about how many calories you’ve burned so far. The only problem is, your apple watch lists many numbers including both active calories and total calories.

If you’re unsure which number you should focus on, this post will help you understand the difference between the two.

Active calories and total calories is actually way less complex than you think. Simply put, active calories are the calories you burn while exercising.

For example, the calories you burn while walking, swimming, jogging, and boxing are considered active calories.

On the other hand, total calories are the calories your burn while exercising combined with the calories your body burns naturally aka when your body is resting or calories you burn from things like sitting and breathing.

In fact, did you know that on average, a person burns about 0.42 calories for every pound each hour of sleep.

Our bodies are naturally burning energy all of the time but that doesn’t mean you don’t need exercise daily. If you are consuming more calories than you’re burning than you will gain weight.

It is important to be active and do some type of physical activity every single day not only to help maintain weight but to help your body through the aging process. 

So, what are two ways you can use calorie tracking to help you push past your limits and reach your goals?

First, set an obtainable and achievable calorie goal on your Apple watch. You want your calorie goal to be something you can reach daily.

Hitting your calorie goal every day will help you gain confidence, become motivated, and feel accomplished.

Second, use your watch during workouts to push yourself to burn more calories.

For example, if I finish a workout and I am at 230 active calories burned, I will push myself to get to 250 calories.

Those extra 20 calories might not seem like a lot but they will add up over time!

-Coach Casey

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