There are plenty of ways to burn a few hundred calories: attack one of these seven high-octane HIIT workouts, take your morning run to the beach, maybe even give one of these athletic sex positions a try.
And while most people prefer to work toward our weight-loss goals at the actual gym, we can definitely get behind the idea of shaving off some calories just by sitting on a couch.
The catch: You'll have to watch one of the scariest movies ever committed to film.
Watching a 90-minute-long horror flick can help you burn about 150 calories—the same as a quick jog or a 30-minute walk, according to a study from the University of Westminster. Even more interesting: The scariest movies tend to provoke the highest calorie burn.
In the study, researchers measured the heart rate, oxygen intake, and carbon dioxide output of participants before, during, and after they watched a scary movie. They found that the number of calories burned increased by at least a third while the participants were watching films like The Shining, Jaws, and Paranormal Activity.
"Each of the 10 films tested set pulses racing, sparking an increase in the heart rate of the case studies," said Richard Mackenzie, an author on the study.
The 10 best calorie-burning scary movies:
- The Shining: 184 calories
- Jaws: 161 calories
- The Exorcist: 158 calories
- Alien: 152 calories
- Saw: 133 calories
- A Nightmare on Elm Street: 118 calories
- Paranormal Activity: 111 calories
- The Blair Witch Project: 105 calories
- The Texas Chain Saw Massacre: 107 calories
- [Rec]: 101 calories
So the next time you think of wussing out on watching the latest scary flick to hit theaters, remind yourself of the one thing most people find scarier than a creepy clown or chainsaw-wielding psycho: gaining belly fat.