Burning calories is never a fun exercise. After all, who wants to do burpees and sweat through five layers of clothes just to see you burned off one slice of pizza? Well, when it comes to burning a calorie, there is definitely one activity that will not be worth your time: clicking your mouse.
Martin Barraud of Wired.com, took a deep dive into the effectiveness of clicking your mouse in terms of burning calories. Let’s just say you could find a more efficient exercise than hitting refresh.
I wish double-clicking my mouse burned more calories.
— Loquacious Mama (@jfrank50) May 15, 2014
Of course, it took some calculations to figure out just how many times you’d have to click a mouse to burn a single calorie.
Now when it comes to measurements, it’s important to remember that one calorie is defined as the energy required to raise one gram of water by one degree Celsius. However, one calorie is actually equivalent to 1,000 kilocalories—and our food labels just happen to use the lower number as to not scare us off.
Hopefully you’re still following —believe me, math isn’t my strong suit, either.
Barraud’s careful calculations began by utilizing the work-energy principle which states that the work done on an object is equal to force multiplied by displacement. He used an estimated force of 0.5 newtons needed to click a mouse and an average click distance of one millimeter. So far, this sounds like my kind of workout.
You would have to click a mouse ten million times to burn a single calorie.
— What The F*** Facts (@WhatTheFFacts) September 8, 2018
By multiplying the two factors, Barraud came up with an energy equivalent of 0.0005 joules. Using some simple math, he figured out that you’d have to click your mouse 10 times per second for one million seconds (10 million times) to burn a single calorie.
It would take you about 11.5 days to accomplish this fitness feat, or roughly the amount of time I go to the gym every year.
So if you need to work off some holiday pounds, it’s safe to say clicking isn’t the solution to your weight-loss resolution.