Solutions: Why interface by interface?

I was looking at the solutions for an eigrp route selection type task. the Solution showed counting up delay interface by interface through the path, then calculating the metric. Why not just sh ip eigrp topology x.x.x.x x.x.x.x  and calculate it from the mininum BW and total delay shown? I've been doing it that way and its faster and by far easier for me :

sh ip eigrp topology 155.1.146.0 255.255.255.0
IP-EIGRP (AS 50): Topology entry for 155.1.146.0/24
  State is Passive, Query origin flag is 1, 1 Successor(s), FD is 286720
  Routing Descriptor Blocks:
  155.1.79.7 (Ethernet0/0), from 155.1.79.7, Send flag is 0x0
      Composite metric is (286720/261120), Route is Internal
      Vector metric:
        Minimum bandwidth is 10000 Kbit
        Total delay is 1200 microseconds
        Reliability is 255/255
        Load is 1/255
        Minimum MTU is 1500
        Hop count is 2

nice and clean..

The problem with adding it interface by interface is I never get the total that the sh ip topology shows. I thought you just count each interface of the next hop router upstream as you go, until you hit the last router and count that interface as well. Well, i'm dead wrong because i get it wrong every time and it frustrates me to the point that i want to tear up the workbook. the solutions are not clear on it, i just can't see from the example a clear method for counting it this way.

One downside I can see right off the bat is that this won't work for calculating the AD. just the FD. So what should I do??[:O]

So can I just forget the tedious task of counting metrics one by one?

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