The Calories Burned with Chest Presses

Man helping woman with weightlifting

A few factors determine how many calories you burn during various exercises -- the intensity of the exercise you are doing, how much you weigh and how much muscle mass you have. Also how long you rest between sets can factor in to your total calorie count. Given information on this criteria, you can get a good idea of about how many calories you burn when you are doing chest presses.

Calories Burned

Harvard Health Publications reports that when weightlifting at a high intensity, a 155-pound person burns 233 calories in 30 minutes. If you weigh 30 pounds more, you burn about 40 more calories; if you weigh 30 pounds less, you burn about 40 less calories. When weightlifting at moderate intensity, the number of calories burned are about half of the numbers for high-intensity weightlifting. These numbers are a good starting point to determine how many calories you burn doing chest presses.

Determining Workout Intensity describes weightlifting intensity levels. At moderate intensity, your breath is fast, but you are not out of breath; you can carry on a conversation but not sing, and you develop a light sweat after 10 minutes. If you are working out at high intensity, your breathing is deep and rapid; you develop a sweat after a few minutes, and you can't say more than a few words without pausing for breath.

Muscle Mass

The more lean muscle mass you have, the more calories you burn. Muscle tissue burns more calories than fat tissue, and the more muscle you have, the more your metabolism increases. This means you burn more calories during activities as well as when you are at rest. If you have weight loss goals, a combination of cardio and strength training will up your metabolism, create more muscle mass and help you burn calories and fat.

Rest Time Between Sets

If you are looking to get the maximum calorie burn out of your weightlifting, limit your rest time in between sets. A study published in the European Journal of Applied Physiology reveals that keeping your rest intervals between 30 and 45 seconds burns up to 50 percent more calories than three-minute intervals. Try doing eight repetitions of chest presses for three sets, resting for 30 seconds between each set.