Your Fitness Questions Answered: Burning off that cookie you just ate

My good friend turned roommate has a mother with a special skill.  She has the power to instantly make mouths water.  Whenever ears caught wind that a special delivery was on its way to our college apartment, kids would come running from every direction to get their spot in line for “Teri’s finest.”  The poor woman barely makes it through the door before she has tons of people asking for her cookies.  Most kids are so focused on the cookies that they forget to say, “Hello.”

I’m telling you, this isn’t just an ordinary chocolate chip cookie.  There is something that makes them extra addictive.  Maybe it was because I was in prime cookie-eating form in college.  Maybe it was because of some secret ingredient.  Whatever the reason, I found it incredibly difficult to resist eating those circular disks of delicious.  And this problem wasn’t just mine.  Everyone I lived with, everyone who knew of “Teri’s finest,” heck, anyone who stumbled upon those cookies randomly couldn’t eat just one.

I happen to be a pretty big food junkie, Food Network enthusiast and amateur chef in my spare time.  I have attempted to get this secret recipe many times in hopes of copying it for myself.  I’ve even tried bribing Teri’s son for the recipe.  Yet, no luck.  I have finally accepted defeat.  There is no getting at that secret recipe.  Instead, I look forward to the next time I enjoy a “Teri’s finest” and answer the following question from Teri regarding cookie damage control:

“I made some of my famous chocolate chip cookies this weekend. And while I know the recipe is secret, can you tell me how much longer I should stay on the treadmill for each cookie I eat?”

While I don’t know the exact recipe of “Teri’s finest” chocolate chip cookies, I’m going to assume it is somewhat similar to a standard homemade chocolate chip cookie recipe.  According to, a homemade chocolate chip cookie has about 130 calories.  For someone trying to maintain their current weight this means they must burn an extra 130 calories.

It is important to remember that everyone is going to be special.  The amount of time they have to spend exercising to use up those extra 130 calories will vary based on the person.  Both the intensity of exercise and the weight of the individual play a significant role in how quickly those calories are burned.  In general, a heavier person will burn calories quicker than a lighter person.  A faster pace or higher intensity of exercise will burn calories faster than exercise at a slower, moderate intensity pace.

In order to burn 130 calories, I (190 lb person) would have to walk at a 4 mph pace for 18 minutes.  The CDC recommends that we all engage in 150 minutes of moderate intensity exercise each week. If I (190 lb person) walked at a 4mph pace for 150 minutes, I would burn 1,111 calories each week.  This is roughly equal to 9 of your delicious cookies.  Calculate how many minutes you have to exercise after eating “Teri’s finest” cookies, here.

And yes, I am still interested in getting the recipe.

Photo credit mikehipp

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