Burning Off High Calorie Foods: Summer Picnics

strawberry shortcake

Classic Strawberry Shortcake

Photo by: Tara Donne

Tara Donne

Gearing up for grilling season? Don’t let too many high-cal favorites keep you from staying trim this summer. Here’s what you should keep in mind at your next picnic.

Crunching the numbers

Everyone burns calories a little differently, the values below are averages based on a 155-pound person.

Mains
1 foot long hot dog = 500 calories = 1 hour of swimming freestyle
1 cheeseburger = 400 calories = 75 minutes of kayaking
5-ounces BBQ ribs = 465 calories = 2 hours 15 minutes of body surfing
Sides
1 cup macaroni salad = 400 calories = 2 hours of fishing
1 cup potato salad = 420 calories = 1 hour of mowing the lawn

1 ear of corn with butter = 200 calories = 1 hour 20 minutes pushing a baby stroller

Desserts
1 slice blueberry pie = 475 calories = 50 minutes of beach volleyball
1 ice cream bar = 250 calories = 1 hour 15 minutes playing catch

1 serving strawberry shortcake = 325 calories = 45 minutes of doubles tennis

Damage Control

No need to call off that family picnic. There are some things you can do.

  •  Watch the servings of alcohol and other high calorie beverages – those calories count too.
  • Pick and choose – check out all the offerings and decide what you really want before you dig in.
  • Spread the love – really want to try both of those desserts? Share! That’s what friends are for.
Tell Us: How do you balance fitness with your favorite summer picnic foods?

Dana Angelo White, MS, RD, ATC, is a registered dietitian, certified athletic trainer and owner of Dana White Nutrition, Inc., which specializes in culinary and sports nutrition. See Dana's full bio »

Next Up

Burning Off High-Calorie Foods: Fair Foods

Fair foods are famously fattening; we'll clue you in to their calorie count, and just what it takes to burn each one off.

Burning Off High Calorie Foods: Thanksgiving Edition

Thanksgiving dinner should be savored; just keep in mind what it would take to burn off high-calorie foods before piling them too high on your plate.

Burning Off High-Calorie Foods: Water Sports Edition

Find out what it takes to burn off high-calorie foods with water sports.

High Calorie Restaurant-Menu Shockers

Find out which high-calorie menu items to skip when you're dining at Chili's, Olive Garden, Dunkin' Donuts and Cheesecake Factory.

Low-Calorie Foods

Lighten up with simple and satisfying recipes.

Summer Picnic Menu

Divide and conquer your next potluck picnic with these delicious and nutritious dishes. Don’t forget the warmer weather also increases the risk of food spoilage, so be sure to keep your food safe by following our simple tips.

5 Scary High-Calorie Menu Items

Like many of you, I check the nutrition facts on menus when I’m out to eat. Every so often I come across such high calorie menu items that it makes me shake in my boots! Check out these 5 top pick plus see which restaurant wins our scariest calorie award!

Healthy Swaps: Summer Picnics

Is your calendar full of picnics and barbecues? Keep your body beach-ready by making these healthy swaps.

What It Takes to Burn Off High-Cal Foods

High-cal foods take more exercise to get rid of and sometimes it makes it more real to visualize just how much moving you’d have to do to shed those decadent calories.

Low-Calorie Fast-Food Menu Items

What should you order when you find yourself at a fast-food chain? We've identified meal and snack options with less than 500 calories each.

Related Pages