Fat -vs- Muscle And Calories Consumed

I was working out with a friend of mine and a question came up. We were on an eliptical machine. I don’t put much faith in the part that tells you how many calories you burned. It doesn’t seem to be accurate.

While my friend and I were discussing it something else came up.

We are both the same height and weight 6’ 175 pounds but I am a lot better built than him. For example I have a 30 inch waist and he was a 34 waist.

He has a lot more fat than I do. So I was thinking, if we both run the same amount on the machine, since our bodies are different, it doesn’t seem to me that we’d be burning the same number of calories.

Question is who burns more? I would think he would because he’s fatter and isn’t fat more dense? What is correct?

You’re right, it’s not like a physics problem whereby the work done must equal calories consumed. Believe it or not, the person in better shape tends to burn more calories. Sounds counterintuitive, right? Many people look at the situation and say, “the in-shape person is like a car that’s tuned up better, i.e., more efficient and thus burns less fuel.” This is wrong. A better analogy is “the in-shape person has a bigger engine, thus burns more fuel.” The metabolism of in-shape people also declines slower after finishing exercise (although the out of shape person may feel more exhausted, and for a longer period of time, i.e., they recover more slowly).

His fat isn’t doing any work when you’re running, you’re muscles are.

It’s not quite that simple. People with a high level of cardiovascular fitness do burn fewer calories during activity than those with a lower level, all else being equal. But people with more muscle mass burn more calories than those with less during activity, all else being equal.

The difference in your waist sizes isn’t quite enough information to make a judgment. Even when I was relatively thin, my waist was always 36" or more, simply because that’s the way I’m built. If your friend is fatter than you, he probably burns more calories to run, but he might have genes that contribute to a highly-efficient aerobic metabolism. In short, it’s not that simple.

Well I am really well built, for example I have 30 waist 44 chest and 16 inch biceps.

He well is the skinny guy everywhere but a BIG beer gut. All his fat is in his gut like he’s expecting. I know that sounds bad but…

I used to have trouble with my waist, so the only way I keep it THIN is to run, run and run, I usually run 90 minutes a day 5 days a week. That is why he’s working out with me to lose the gut. And I told him, sit ups are fine, but the gut goes when the FAT burns off.

My cardio is pretty good. I can go a long time at a steady pace, I just can’t do the sprints.

So basically I’m thin but muscular and he’s thin everywhere but his stomach.

I dont remember where I heard this but
pound for pound muscle burns 9 times the calories as fat at rest.
and muscle is definitly way denser than fat is. drop your body fat below a certain percentage and you no longer float as easy in water.

The resting metabolic rates of fat and muscle are actually fairly similar. It’s once you get moving that the difference comes into play.

Holy crap. That seems like a regimen designed to destroy your legs. Now I wonder how old you are, how much you weigh, and whether you get any injuries. Maybe you’re Superman?