Calories Burned Biking Calculator

By Hanna Pamuła, PhD candidate
Last updated: Jul 05, 2021

Calories Burned Biking Calculator may satisfy your curiosity for how many calories biking burn. Whether you are a recreational cyclist, a bike commuter or a professional, you can calculate calories and kilograms lost while riding a bike. If you want to know how other sports and activities help in losing weight, check our calories burned calculator.

What are calories?

A calorie is a unit of energy. It is defined as the approximate amount of energy needed to raise the temperature of one gram of water by one degree Celsius at a pressure of one atmosphere. One calorie (cal) is a really small amount, so in everyday life we use kilocalories (kcal), which is one thousand of calories. In this article, we use the term "calories" to describe kilocalories, which is quite a common practice.

What factors affect calories burned and weight loss?

There are three main factors in calculations of burned calories and weight loss:

  • body weight - the more you weight, the more you burn, as you use more energy to move a heavier body
  • exercise intensity and duration - more extended and more intense activities burns the calories faster
  • choice of the exercise - it's intuitive: we know that recreational biking, mountain race (check our cycling breakaway calculator) and stationary cycling, each practised for 30 minutes, will give different results

How many calories does biking burn?

To calculate the calories burned, we need to know how to assess intensity and evaluate choice of the exercise. The easiest and most objective way to assess this is using your power output. If you don't have a powermeter on your bike we recommend you to use out cycling wattage calculator to help you obtain this number.

In this case, the formula to obtain your calories consumed takes into account your average power (Power) and the time of the activity (T):

calories = ((Power * T) / 4.18 ) / 0.24

where 4.18 is the conversion factor from Joules (SI unit) to calories, and 0.24 is the efficiency (24%) of an average human body when cycling.

However, you might not have the time to do those calculations, or maybe you're looking for a simple estimation. Here is where the units "MET" appear. METs (Metabolic Equivalent of Task) are expressing the energy cost of physical activities. Simply, they measure how many calories you burn per hour of activity and per one kilogram of body weight.

For example, MET for leisure biking is equal to 4, and the value for somebody taking part in a race and cycling over 20mph can be as high as 16. Therefore, choosing only the type of activity is not enough - in other calculators, you can usually find the one MET value for biking equal to 8 or 8.5, which is an averaged value for all types of cycling.

Calories burned biking calculator uses the formula for calories burned:

calories = T * 60 * MET * 3.5 * W / 200

where T is the duration of activity in hours, W is your weight in kilograms (including bike and extra equipment), and MET is a metabolic equivalent of the chosen task.

To calculate the weight loss, we need to know how much energy our fat tissue contains - there are approximately 7700 calories stored in every kilogram of body fat. It means that once you've found the number of burned calories, all you have to do is to divide by 7700 to obtain the weight loss in kilograms:

weight_loss = calories/7700

If you want to check what other advantages of cycling are, have a look on biking life gain and car vs bike calculator.

Cycling for weight loss

You want to lose some weight, but you still hesitate: which activity is better? Half-day trip biking for 5 hours in leisure pace or 1.5-hour stationary biking with a heavy load? Thanks to our calculator you can assess which form of biking activity may serve you best:

  1. Choose the type of biking you are considering, e.g., bicycling 12-13.9 mph leisure, with moderate effort.
  2. Enter your weight into the calories burned biking calculator. Let's assume it's 80 kg.
  3. Next, determine the duration of the activity. Let's say you went for a half-day trip and were biking for 5 hours.
  4. Input all of these values into the calorie burn formula:

calories = 5 * 60 * 6 * 3.5 * 80 / 200 = 2520 kcal 5. Finally, divide this value by 7700 to obtain your weight loss:

2520/7700 = 0.33 kg

Repeat the steps for second activity, changing only the form and duration - the results for 1.5-hour stationary biking with a heavy load is 1323 kcal burned and 0.172 kg weight loss. Tadaaam! The calories burned biking calculator helped you figure out which form of biking is more profitable.

If you want to take care of your weight more systematically, visit our BMR (Basal Metabolic Rate) calculator. It will tell you how many calories your body requires for maintaining its basic existence. With this knowledge, it will be easier to create a healthy and efficient diet plan.

Hanna Pamuła, PhD candidate
Do you know your wattage?
Bicycling <10 mph (<16km/h), leisure to work or for pleasure
Your weight
Time of activity
Energy burn
Weight loss
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