As the nights draw closer and the weather becomes harder to cope with the immediate temptation to skip physical activity for a car ride or commute by public transport seems to good to resist. However, there is a potent downside to ditching the sidewalks which is becoming less active and not meeting your daily physical activity quota. By choosing train, bus or car over walking you are limiting your window of opportunity for regular exercise, thereby reducing your chance of maintaining a healthy waistline and influencing calorie expenditure.
In a 2011 report by the New York State Department of Health, statistics showed that 36% of residents were overweight, and a further 25% were clinically obese. The trend continues beyond the city boarders; further reports indicate that 69% of the US population is either overweight or obese.
Native New Yorkers can thank the online health website Treated.com and its Head Practitioner, Dr Wayne Osborne, for providing a solution. The New York Map of Calories illustrates how many calories can be burnt off by walking, cycling and jogging the distance between stops on all major lines on the New York Subway. By measuring a journey from point A to B and converting this distance into the number of expected calories burnt, there is evidence that one small step can go along way to improving long-term health.
In addition to the obvious, there are many other benefits to walking, jogging and cycling that the average New Yorker can be grateful for. Staying active boosts your immune system and sends out signals to the rest of your body to prevent premature onset of cardio vascular illnesses, including high blood pressure, high cholesterol, heart disease, as well as diabetes and stroke. Treated.com’s Campaign highlights that it’s important to take those steps available to you to keep your weight at a healthy level.
Looking closer at the readings, commuters will observe that some routes vary in terms of calorie expenditure. Given below are examples of the notable findings from the study by Treated.com and Dr Wayne: The Seventh Avenue and Nassau Street lines were the most walkable, with average walking times of 9.1 and 9.4 minutes per leg (approximately 41 calories each).
Lines on Eighth Avenue and Sixth Avenue had the highest average journey times, with 12.9 and 13.1 minutes respectively (translating to approximately 58 calories per leg).
The average leg time between stops in Midtown Manhattan is around 10 minutes walking. So for a person who weighs 179 lbs, walking for just one minute will burn off roughly four and a half calories, making a ten minute walk equivalent to just under 45 calories.