Burn off that Christmas dinner… with a 12-hour, 50-mile walk!

Burn off that Christmas dinner… with a 12-hour, 50-mile walk! Expert calculates how much exercise is needed to undo a festive blowout

  • To fully burn off excesses of Christmas dinner the average person would need to go for close to 12-hour walk on Boxing Day
  • Hike of about 50 miles would oust the gut-busting 3,475 calories contributed by turkey and all the trimmings
  • Alternatively, people watching their waistlines could set off on six-hour jog  

It’s probably the last thing you’ll feel like doing if you’ve overdone it with the port and mince pies on the big day.

But to fully burn off the excesses of Christmas dinner, the average person would have to go for close to a 12-hour walk on Boxing Day.

A hike of about 50 miles would oust the gut-busting 3,475 calories contributed by turkey and all the trimmings.

Alternatively, people watching their festive waistlines could set off on a six-hour jog, according to Amanda Daley, professor of behavioural medicine at Loughborough University.

Just two glasses of prosecco before lunch add up to 230 calories, requiring a 46-minute walk. And two slices of turkey plus pigs in blankets come to 360 calories, which would take 72 minutes of walking to offset.

Just two glasses of prosecco before lunch add up to 230 calories, requiring a 46-minute walk. And two slices of turkey plus pigs in blankets come to 360 calories, which would take 72 minutes of walking to offset

The most calorific item on a typical menu, the yule log, would require a stroll of more than two hours. In fact, the entire meal, complete with nibbles, soup starter and a post-dinner port or brandy, adds up to 695 minutes of walking required to burn it off.

 For those who refuse to go for even a short stroll, and collapse in front of the television for the rest of Christmas Day, the single meal could mean up to 2lbs of weight gain. 

Professor Daley, who calculated the calories for The Conversation website, said: ‘It is important that people understand the true energy cost of food to encourage some restraint in their eating, and perhaps make them think twice about something like the yule log – or reduce the size of the piece they cut.’

A total of almost 12 hours of walking at 4mph is needed to burn off the average Christmas dinner for an adult weighing 13st 3lbs.

They could reduce it to six-and-a-half hours if they cut out the pre-dinner nibbles and appetisers and only have a yule log for dessert with two glasses of wine.

That could bring the Christmas dinner toll down to 2,080 calories.

Meanwhile, the average adult gains up to 3lb 5oz over the festive break. 

The British Dietetic Association has warned people can consume 6,000 calories over Christmas Day alone – three times the recommended daily total for women and more than double the calorie allowance for men.

Meanwhile, the average adult gains up to 3lb 5oz over the festive break (stock image)

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