Message Boards » Fitness and Exercise

TOPIC: Most accurate calorie calculation?

← Previous 1
← Previous 1
 
Ic_disabled_photos
Topic has been inactive for 30 days or more and images have been disabled.
Display All Images
February 16, 2012 8:19 PM
What - in your opinion - is the most accurate way to measure calories burned? Heart rate monitor that will tell you the calories? If so... which one do you use? Is there an app I'm missing out on?

I'm starting to work out more at home when my schedule is crunched and I really hate guesstimating the calories I'm burning...

Heather
  7251857
February 17, 2012 3:58 AM
HRM with a chest strap is going to be the most accurate way to estimate calories burned(nothing directly measures calories burned).

Polar is a really good brand.. and I recommend the FT4, FT7, FT40 and FT760 depending on your needs... Each do different things and some models are more expensive than others.
  6370231
February 17, 2012 4:20 AM
Actually , there is something that measures calories burned.

The Body Bugg (www.apexfitness.com) is fairly accurate (over 90% accurate when determining calorie burn through the entire day). I used to be a member of 24 Hour Fitness, and I had a personal trainer there. She suggested it (probably because they sell it in their gyms, but it honestly has helped me tremendously). The Body Bugg is worn on your left tricep and uses several parameters to measure cals burned. It has a motion dectector, a step counter, and also detects changes in heat produced by muscles, as well as changes in skin temperature and moisture (sweating). It has been proven to be over 90% accurate.

It really made a difference for me. For example the HR monitors on the gym equipment would tell me I burned 500 cals, but when I put the Body Bugg on and did the same activity for the same amount of time, I learned that I only burned 350, not 500. I have learned what exercizes burn more for me, and am able to do those more and therefore see results faster. Before the Body Bugg weight loss was more of a guessing game, Now I know exactly what I've burned, and can adjust my intake and/or activity accordingly. Since getting it I've lost a total of 32lbs, and I wasn't really getting results before. Of course it doesn't make you loose, but it has been a great motivator for me, as I am a person that needs empirical evidence.

DISCLAIMER: I AM NOT A BODY BUGG, APEX FITNESS, OR 24 HOUR FITNESS EMPLOYEE OR REPRESENTATIVE IN ANY WAY. PLEASE CHECK IT OUT FOR YOURSELF.

Hope you find this helpful. :)
Edited by FoxyPhoenixRising On February 17, 2012 4:23 AM
February 17, 2012 4:23 AM
QUOTE:

Actually , there is something that measures calories burned.

The Body Bugg (www.apexfitness.com) is fairly accurate (over 90% accurate when determining calorie burn through the entire day). I used to be a member of 24 Hour Fitness, and I had a personal trainer there. She suggested it (probably because they sell it in their gyms, but it honestly has helped me tremendously). The Body Bugg is worn on your left tricep and uses several parameters to measure cals burned. It has a motion dectector, a step counter, and also detects changes in heat produced by muscles, as well as changes in skin temperature and moisture (sweating). It has been proven to be over 90% accurate.

It really made a difference for me. For example the HR monitors on the gym equipment would tell me I burned 500 cals, but when I put the Body Bugg on and did the same activity for the same amount of time, I learned that I only burned 350, not 500. I have learned what exercizes burn more for me, and am able to do those more and therefore see results faster. Before the Body Bugg weight loss was more of a guessing game, Now I know exactly what I've burned, and can adjust my intake and/or activiry accordingly. Since getting it I've lost a total of 32lbs, and I wasn't really getting results before. Of course it doesn't make you loose, but it has been a great motivator for me, as I am a person that needs empirical evidence.

DISCLAIMER: I AM NOT A BODY BUGG, APEX FITNESS, OR 24 HOUR FITNESS EMPLOYEE OR REPRESENTATIVE IN ANY WAY. PLEASE CHECK IT OUT FOR YOURSELF.

Hope you find this helpful. :)


Sorry but no.. Bodybugg is an estimation just like everything else.. the only difference is that you can wear it all day long but with an HRM you can't.

Nothing can directly measure calories burned... it's impossible to figure out an exact science that would measure a persons calories burned because of how different each person is. You can get pretty close with estimations, but it will still be an estimation at the end of the day.
  6370231
February 17, 2012 4:29 AM
Interesting debate... personally, I don't have the answer, but I know people who swear by the body bugg. I don't have one myself, but perhaps will consider it soon, as I think that it could be a motivating tool to use.
  534154
February 17, 2012 2:33 PM
Thanks all :) I appreciate the feedback.

I might try the body bugg, but I hate buying gadgets and finding out a few months later that they are just crap, lol.

I hope they ship to Canada... lol

Heather
  7251857
February 17, 2012 2:48 PM
Body bugg for me too! Love it.
February 19, 2012 2:19 AM
QUOTE:

QUOTE:

Actually , there is something that measures calories burned.

The Body Bugg (www.apexfitness.com) is fairly accurate (over 90% accurate when determining calorie burn through the entire day). I used to be a member of 24 Hour Fitness, and I had a personal trainer there. She suggested it (probably because they sell it in their gyms, but it honestly has helped me tremendously). The Body Bugg is worn on your left tricep and uses several parameters to measure cals burned. It has a motion dectector, a step counter, and also detects changes in heat produced by muscles, as well as changes in skin temperature and moisture (sweating). It has been proven to be over 90% accurate.

It really made a difference for me. For example the HR monitors on the gym equipment would tell me I burned 500 cals, but when I put the Body Bugg on and did the same activity for the same amount of time, I learned that I only burned 350, not 500. I have learned what exercizes burn more for me, and am able to do those more and therefore see results faster. Before the Body Bugg weight loss was more of a guessing game, Now I know exactly what I've burned, and can adjust my intake and/or activiry accordingly. Since getting it I've lost a total of 32lbs, and I wasn't really getting results before. Of course it doesn't make you loose, but it has been a great motivator for me, as I am a person that needs empirical evidence.

DISCLAIMER: I AM NOT A BODY BUGG, APEX FITNESS, OR 24 HOUR FITNESS EMPLOYEE OR REPRESENTATIVE IN ANY WAY. PLEASE CHECK IT OUT FOR YOURSELF.

Hope you find this helpful. :)


Sorry but no.. Bodybugg is an estimation just like everything else.. the only difference is that you can wear it all day long but with an HRM you can't.

Nothing can directly measure calories burned... it's impossible to figure out an exact science that would measure a persons calories burned because of how different each person is. You can get pretty close with estimations, but it will still be an estimation at the end of the day.


Sorry but no...the ability (or lack thereof, in the case of HRMs) to wear "all day" (which Bodybugg can actually be worn 24 hours a day, just not during showering or swimming,) is not the only difference. Bodybugg utilizes more information to calculate cals burned than a HRM does. A HRM does just that- monitors your heart rate. The companies that sell HRMs marketed as able to count cals burned tell you that the numbers provided must be treated as a rough estimate. HRMs have also been proven to have about a 20% margin for error in estimating cals burned. This is a 10% difference as compared to Bodybugg, which is about 90% accurate. And since the question posted was "what in your opinion is the most accurate way to measure cals burned?", I don't see how a heart rate monitor which gives a rough estimate would be the best recommendation. & while I do agree that Bodybugg is also an estimate, it's still more accurate AND more personalized than a HRM.
February 19, 2012 2:22 AM
I definitely agree with you there. Especially when the price of said gadget is high, and the Bodybugg is not cheap. But I can tell you that I've had mine for about 9 1/2 months now, and it's working great.
February 19, 2012 4:10 AM
QUOTE:

QUOTE:

QUOTE:

Actually , there is something that measures calories burned.

The Body Bugg (www.apexfitness.com) is fairly accurate (over 90% accurate when determining calorie burn through the entire day). I used to be a member of 24 Hour Fitness, and I had a personal trainer there. She suggested it (probably because they sell it in their gyms, but it honestly has helped me tremendously). The Body Bugg is worn on your left tricep and uses several parameters to measure cals burned. It has a motion dectector, a step counter, and also detects changes in heat produced by muscles, as well as changes in skin temperature and moisture (sweating). It has been proven to be over 90% accurate.

It really made a difference for me. For example the HR monitors on the gym equipment would tell me I burned 500 cals, but when I put the Body Bugg on and did the same activity for the same amount of time, I learned that I only burned 350, not 500. I have learned what exercizes burn more for me, and am able to do those more and therefore see results faster. Before the Body Bugg weight loss was more of a guessing game, Now I know exactly what I've burned, and can adjust my intake and/or activiry accordingly. Since getting it I've lost a total of 32lbs, and I wasn't really getting results before. Of course it doesn't make you loose, but it has been a great motivator for me, as I am a person that needs empirical evidence.

DISCLAIMER: I AM NOT A BODY BUGG, APEX FITNESS, OR 24 HOUR FITNESS EMPLOYEE OR REPRESENTATIVE IN ANY WAY. PLEASE CHECK IT OUT FOR YOURSELF.

Hope you find this helpful. :)


Sorry but no.. Bodybugg is an estimation just like everything else.. the only difference is that you can wear it all day long but with an HRM you can't.

Nothing can directly measure calories burned... it's impossible to figure out an exact science that would measure a persons calories burned because of how different each person is. You can get pretty close with estimations, but it will still be an estimation at the end of the day.


Sorry but no...the ability (or lack thereof, in the case of HRMs) to wear "all day" (which Bodybugg can actually be worn 24 hours a day, just not during showering or swimming,) is not the only difference. Bodybugg utilizes more information to calculate cals burned than a HRM does. A HRM does just that- monitors your heart rate. The companies that sell HRMs marketed as able to count cals burned tell you that the numbers provided must be treated as a rough estimate. HRMs have also been proven to have about a 20% margin for error in estimating cals burned. This is a 10% difference as compared to Bodybugg, which is about 90% accurate. And since the question posted was "what in your opinion is the most accurate way to measure cals burned?", I don't see how a heart rate monitor which gives a rough estimate would be the best recommendation. & while I do agree that Bodybugg is also an estimate, it's still more accurate AND more personalized than a HRM.


Do you even know how HRM's work? Heart rate has nothing to do with the calories burned estimation.

What it does is takes your info(age, weight, height, gender, Vo2max and Max heart rate) and combines that with oxygen uptake, to give a calorie estimation. Granted if you get a cheap one, it's not going to do it's job that well but if you go into the higher end Polars(FT40, FT60) they are going to be pretty spot on.

Plus you said in your original post that Bodybugg measures calories burned(which I would assume you are talking about it directly measures calories burned) and thats not true as you admitted in the second post.... It's just an estimation at the end of the day.

If she's looking for just exercise, then HRM would be great.. It's been proven that Bodybugg is no more accurate for exercise than an HRM. If she wants something to wear all day and while sleeping, then Bodybugg it is.
  6370231
February 19, 2012 5:11 AM
LOVE my bodybugg!! So motivating. Yesterday on date night with hubby, I declined being dropped off at the door of venue because I knew I was well below my step count for the day, in high heel boots at that! Love having both exercise interval & total daily calories expended info too, 90% "estimate" or not. :o)
Edited by Cpuff70 On February 19, 2012 5:11 AM
  15775989
February 19, 2012 5:22 AM
QUOTE:

QUOTE:

QUOTE:

QUOTE:

Actually , there is something that measures calories burned.

The Body Bugg (www.apexfitness.com) is fairly accurate (over 90% accurate when determining calorie burn through the entire day). I used to be a member of 24 Hour Fitness, and I had a personal trainer there. She suggested it (probably because they sell it in their gyms, but it honestly has helped me tremendously). The Body Bugg is worn on your left tricep and uses several parameters to measure cals burned. It has a motion dectector, a step counter, and also detects changes in heat produced by muscles, as well as changes in skin temperature and moisture (sweating). It has been proven to be over 90% accurate.

It really made a difference for me. For example the HR monitors on the gym equipment would tell me I burned 500 cals, but when I put the Body Bugg on and did the same activity for the same amount of time, I learned that I only burned 350, not 500. I have learned what exercizes burn more for me, and am able to do those more and therefore see results faster. Before the Body Bugg weight loss was more of a guessing game, Now I know exactly what I've burned, and can adjust my intake and/or activiry accordingly. Since getting it I've lost a total of 32lbs, and I wasn't really getting results before. Of course it doesn't make you loose, but it has been a great motivator for me, as I am a person that needs empirical evidence.

DISCLAIMER: I AM NOT A BODY BUGG, APEX FITNESS, OR 24 HOUR FITNESS EMPLOYEE OR REPRESENTATIVE IN ANY WAY. PLEASE CHECK IT OUT FOR YOURSELF.

Hope you find this helpful. :)


Sorry but no.. Bodybugg is an estimation just like everything else.. the only difference is that you can wear it all day long but with an HRM you can't.

Nothing can directly measure calories burned... it's impossible to figure out an exact science that would measure a persons calories burned because of how different each person is. You can get pretty close with estimations, but it will still be an estimation at the end of the day.


Sorry but no...the ability (or lack thereof, in the case of HRMs) to wear "all day" (which Bodybugg can actually be worn 24 hours a day, just not during showering or swimming,) is not the only difference. Bodybugg utilizes more information to calculate cals burned than a HRM does. A HRM does just that- monitors your heart rate. The companies that sell HRMs marketed as able to count cals burned tell you that the numbers provided must be treated as a rough estimate. HRMs have also been proven to have about a 20% margin for error in estimating cals burned. This is a 10% difference as compared to Bodybugg, which is about 90% accurate. And since the question posted was "what in your opinion is the most accurate way to measure cals burned?", I don't see how a heart rate monitor which gives a rough estimate would be the best recommendation. & while I do agree that Bodybugg is also an estimate, it's still more accurate AND more personalized than a HRM.


Do you even know how HRM's work? Heart rate has nothing to do with the calories burned estimation.

What it does is takes your info(age, weight, height, gender, Vo2max and Max heart rate) and combines that with oxygen uptake, to give a calorie estimation. Granted if you get a cheap one, it's not going to do it's job that well but if you go into the higher end Polars(FT40, FT60) they are going to be pretty spot on.

Plus you said in your original post that Bodybugg measures calories burned(which I would assume you are talking about it directly measures calories burned) and thats not true as you admitted in the second post.... It's just an estimation at the end of the day.

If she's looking for just exercise, then HRM would be great.. It's been proven that Bodybugg is no more accurate for exercise than an HRM. If she wants something to wear all day and while sleeping, then Bodybugg it is.


To add more info to the discussion, a HRM (even Polar) cannot truly determine Vo2max (the ultimate in personalized measurements to determine calories burned at various heart rate levels). Vo2max is most accurately determined with the help of a professional, the wearing of a mask that measures your oxygen exhaled at measured heart rates while performing measureable exertion (such as treadmill work). That being said, having your own Vo2max numbers determined is not cheap. Polar attempts to determine this, but is only estimating based on formulas input into the system. All this is an estimate -- even Polar's products. This is not to say either tool isn't worth while (they both have their uses), but those who believe Polar is a no-fail, non estimating system being deceived.
  14852794
February 19, 2012 5:24 AM
Is the Bodybugg the one you wear on the top of your arm?
February 19, 2012 11:54 AM
QUOTE:

Is the Bodybugg the one you wear on the top of your arm?


Yep, that's the one.
  15775989
February 20, 2012 10:27 AM
(@Olong). Do you know how Bodybugg works? Or the Polar FT60? Interesting that you said heart rate has nothing to do with the cals burned "estimation" when it is in fact a heart rate monitor. That's exactly the information it uses, because just as the next post states, there is no way for it to determine Vo2Max. You have to have that clinically measured and then enter that info for that to be a determining factor in its "estimate" of cals burned. Having your Vo2Max measured is very expensive, as is the Polar FT60, which retails for $219.95.

Considering that the Bodybugg also uses your height, weight, and gender, just as the Polar FT60, and retails for $129.00 AND both products ultimately are giving you an estimate of cals burned, in my opinion, it is the better choice for the money. And the original post asked for a more accurate way to determine cals burned. The following post said there's nothing out there except HRMs. I'm just saying there are other options.

Are they estimates? Of course. Both products are giving estimates. So the assumption that I was saying the Bodybugg gives an exact measurement was an incorrect one. And if I worded my post in as touting it as providing an exact measurement then I apologize for that, because I was writing it knowing that the numbers are estimates. But even estimates have varying degrees of accuracy.

If money were no object I'd probably use both, since the Polar uses heart rate and Bodybugg doesn't. But it does use a motion detector, step counter, and sensors that detect changes in skin temperature and moisture and rate of heat dissipation to estimate cals burned.

Another thing I considered is that as far as using HR for cals burned, there are other factors that can affect HR. Cardiovascular disease or abnormalities, certain medications, even caffeine consumption, etc. can affect HR and therefore the accuracy of the estimate of cals burned. Another reason I chose Bodybugg.

Yet aother: money is a factor, at least for me. So the product which utilizes the most information to determine cals burned for the least amount of money just seems more logical to me. And like I said, just sharing my experience and opinion.
February 20, 2012 10:28 AM
QUOTE:

HRM with a chest strap is going to be the most accurate way to estimate calories burned(nothing directly measures calories burned).

Polar is a really good brand.. and I recommend the FT4, FT7, FT40 and FT760 depending on your needs... Each do different things and some models are more expensive than others.



^^^^^^
  11254951
February 20, 2012 10:33 AM
the irony of all this is even if you have a perfect number of exactly how many calories you burned today... the number means nothing.


The most accurate calorie calculation for your personal use for managing bodyweight comes from time.
it comes from you measuring your calories consumed, and looking at your bodies effects from that over time.

Its the only way to account for how you mis-calculate, how your metabolism is currently working, how to work with your activities throughout the day, etc....


The only problem with it is it takes time... People dont want to spend the time. they want something they can plug in on the computer and play with.
February 21, 2012 11:31 AM
QUOTE:

the irony of all this is even if you have a perfect number of exactly how many calories you burned today... the number means nothing.
....
The only problem with it is it takes time... People dont want to spend the time. they want something they can plug in on the computer and play with.


I don't have a problem with spending the time. I have lost about 30 lbs over a year (prior to joining MFP) and was just curious about the ways I could determine accurate calories as my favourite activity is going to my friend's kick ass gym and flipping/pushing tires .... but I'm also kind of a typ-A control freak (aren't you jealous of my husband? LOL) and I love knowing how many calories I've burned. It makes working out just a little bit more like a game :)
  7251857
February 23, 2012 12:05 AM
Right! I don't mind spending the time either. I spend a minimum of 2 hours in the gym 5 days a week, which I think is pretty good for a single mom of 3 that's employed full time.

Being able to make it a numbers game is a great motivator for me. If I do intervals on the treadmill for an hour and burn approx. 550, I see if I can burn more the next time. I also look at my totals for the day and try to beat those numbers too. For example, my current challenge I've set for myself is burning more than 3500 cals in a day. So far my highest number is 3452.

And even with these numbers being estimates, the great thing about it is that by challenging myself and being more aware of what works for me, I'm getting better results than I have in the past.
February 23, 2012 12:08 AM
I need to apologize for addressing a prior post to Olong. Error on my part. I'm sorry. embarassed
February 23, 2012 1:04 AM
Who says you cant wear an HRM for 24 hours? I wore my Polar for 24 hours on a non exercise day to find out how many calories I burn without working out. I even wore it in the shower. The bottom line is, no matter what you use, its just an estimate. A good HRM or Body Bugg either one will work fine. Keep in mind that Body Bugg requires a subscription which runs $10 a month.
February 23, 2012 2:41 AM
QUOTE:

Who says you cant wear an HRM for 24 hours? I wore my Polar for 24 hours on a non exercise day to find out how many calories I burn without working out. I even wore it in the shower. The bottom line is, no matter what you use, its just an estimate. A good HRM or Body Bugg either one will work fine. Keep in mind that Body Bugg requires a subscription which runs $10 a month.


Uh, the manual? It states that HRM's are meant for exercise only I'm pretty sure... Their algorithm's for figuring out calorie burned estimations are meant to use elevated heart rate.. not resting, sitting around doing nothing heart rate.

Which is why Body Bugg is always offered up if you want something to wear all day.
  6370231
April 16, 2013 6:49 PM
Just got My Basis unit. It's a wrist watch: measures Heart rate, skin temperature, galvonic skin response, pedometer, and an accelerometer to track sleeping habits. One unit to rule them all... ain't technology grand!

Caviat: the company is still in it's infancy. no phone app yet. only water resistant. backorder can have a lengthy wait. lots of bugs to work out judging from the support blogs. Got my fingers crossed mine doesn't develop any....
May 17, 2013 8:42 AM
The calorie formula for heart rate that I have seen from research is good for heart rates between 90 bpm - 150 bpm. You got to remember statistics, confidence interviews, size of the sampling pool of people, etc. I have not see any research regarding skin temperature and sweating. Sometimes you workout and you do not sweat as much and I question that to be used to calculate calories expended. I'm an engineer and I like numbers. HRM is really for cardio training so you can tell when you are in the aerobice or anaerbic zones so you don't overwork or injure yourself. In order to really get calories burned at the end, there should be a range using 95% confidence interval. Just find it hard to believe when you are not given a range for calories burned and it is just simply a number.
October 26, 2013 3:28 PM
Any device that underestimates your calorie consumption will be the one that helps you loose more. Someone mentioned that Bodybug said they lost 350 calories vs 500 with the gym cardio machine estimate. So therefore, it sounds like body bug might possibly underestimate a persons number of calories burned, causing a person to work harder or eat less and achieve better results. Less accurate could have its benefits. ;)

Also something I learn is that the gym machines use a gross calorie burn estimate. Meaning it counts the amount of calories you loose exercising plus the amount of calories your body already burns at a resting rate. You're deceived into thinking I lost 500 calories MORE from running for an hour, but really you lost 500 - 75 calories/hr from your resting metabolic rate = only 425 calories.

Here is a link that explains it. http://www.shapesense.com/fitness-exercise/articles/net-versus-gross-calorie-burn.aspx

Personally I would prefer the HRM b/c there is more evidence based research correlating HR and calories burned. Plus you can track how your HR changes over time when exercising at the same intensity. Then pushing yourself to a greater intensity to keep yourself challenged and HR up. I love seeing how the body works and responds.

Message Boards » Fitness and Exercise

Posts by members, moderators and admins should not be considered medical advice and no guarantee is made against accuracy.