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TOPIC: Calories burned on Fitbit

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March 21, 2012 2:14 PM
On the Fitbit, it tells how many calories burned for the day! Mine said I burned 2,841. Does anyone know if Fitbit is accurate on this? Thanks so much!
March 21, 2012 2:38 PM
I think it is pretty accurate for me.
March 21, 2012 3:44 PM
It seems to be accurate for me too.
  7127952
March 21, 2012 4:09 PM
Fitbit's daily total includes the BMR ... when it auto-syncs with MFP, those "settle out" (assuming you've got your activity level set the same in both MFP and FB)

If you've done a workout, log it on MyFitnessPal - it's important to note the "start" time and total exercise time. It is helpful if you've also used the Fitbit's start/stop feature but it isn't mandatory.

The main time I've seen a Fitbit reading be crazy high was when it counted driving on a hilly road as "steps" and "stairs". I would like to be able to delete those but haven't figured out how yet... When that happens, I just make sure I keep my food intake low enough so I'm not using those "freebie" calories from the Fitbit.

I've only had my "Fittybitty" for a couple of months - I'm still learning it's quirks... but I sure love it!
March 21, 2012 7:09 PM
QUOTE:

Fitbit's daily total includes the BMR ... when it auto-syncs with MFP, those "settle out" (assuming you've got your activity level set the same in both MFP and FB)

If you've done a workout, log it on MyFitnessPal - it's important to note the "start" time and total exercise time. It is helpful if you've also used the Fitbit's start/stop feature but it isn't mandatory.

The main time I've seen a Fitbit reading be crazy high was when it counted driving on a hilly road as "steps" and "stairs". I would like to be able to delete those but haven't figured out how yet... When that happens, I just make sure I keep my food intake low enough so I'm not using those "freebie" calories from the Fitbit.

I've only had my "Fittybitty" for a couple of months - I'm still learning it's quirks... but I sure love it!


You can log an activity on MFP or Fitbit for Driving during the time you're actually driving to overwrite the false stairs and steps.
  14779288
March 21, 2012 7:19 PM
Also I was reminded today that if you are walking for your activity not to log it onto MFP.
March 21, 2012 7:21 PM
I personally do not log any activity on MFP at all..I just let FB give me the adjustments.
March 22, 2012 3:44 AM
Why would fitbit log anything when you drive? Your sitting down!
  15316203
March 22, 2012 4:01 AM
QUOTE:

Why would fitbit log anything when you drive? Your sitting down!


because if i drive for an hour and a half it count that i have gone up 15 floors !!!
March 22, 2012 9:28 AM
QUOTE:

Why would fitbit log anything when you drive? Your sitting down!


It depends. I don't usually have this problem, but it is a common one. I suspect it may be more common if you wear your fitbit on your hip, but it can happen to those who wear it on their chest as well. Depending on the road your drive or the vehical, there are these vibrations and you are not perfectly still. Sometimes they may mimic the impact you would experience in a step so it credits you with a step. Impact seems to be one of the things the fitbit uses in it's estimate of your steps/activity level/calorie burn. Usually I only see a few extra steps or a few dozen but not enough to really raise the burn. The same thing can happen with other activities that move your body enough such as carnival rides. As mentioned, logging the time as driving can correct this for a bumpy ride/drive.

ETA: for those who don't know. If you have this problem and wish to try logging your driving. Log it on fitbit as that is where it is set up to correct the problem (I don't know whether it corrects floors though, but it should with the calorie burn anyway). Also, your nonfitbit using mfp friends won't be curious why you suddenly consider driving a workout, lol!
Edited by Kimsied On March 22, 2012 9:31 AM
March 22, 2012 9:29 AM
Thanks for your help everyone!
March 22, 2012 3:01 PM
QUOTE:

QUOTE:

Fitbit's daily total includes the BMR ... when it auto-syncs with MFP, those "settle out" (assuming you've got your activity level set the same in both MFP and FB)

If you've done a workout, log it on MyFitnessPal - it's important to note the "start" time and total exercise time. It is helpful if you've also used the Fitbit's start/stop feature but it isn't mandatory.

The main time I've seen a Fitbit reading be crazy high was when it counted driving on a hilly road as "steps" and "stairs". I would like to be able to delete those but haven't figured out how yet... When that happens, I just make sure I keep my food intake low enough so I'm not using those "freebie" calories from the Fitbit.

I've only had my "Fittybitty" for a couple of months - I'm still learning it's quirks... but I sure love it!


You can log an activity on MFP or Fitbit for Driving during the time you're actually driving to overwrite the false stairs and steps.


OMG!!! Thankyou soooooooooooo much for posting thsi tidbit! I have been going nuts trying to override the discrepancy FB gives me when i am just sedentary.
  11561936
March 22, 2012 3:03 PM
QUOTE:

Also I was reminded today that if you are walking for your activity not to log it onto MFP.


I do though. I wear my FB to get credit for steps but I also walk at 3.5-4.3 mph and wear an HRM which shows I burn alot more than what FB says. So I plug in cals burned per HRM only on MFP. Works great.
  11561936
March 22, 2012 7:54 PM
I'm really not sure... It looks as if fitbit has already added my calories burned! I don't add anything to the exercise log, unless I strength train. Is this right????
  19302734
March 22, 2012 7:55 PM
QUOTE:

I personally do not log any activity on MFP at all..I just let FB give me the adjustments.



okay...I do the same! Hope that's the right way ;-)
  19302734
March 22, 2012 8:27 PM
I received my fit bit today. It has added over 1000 calories (fit bit adjustment) which I definitely haven't burned. I've deleted it but it keeps adding it again and makes the number higher! How do I stop that?

Also I read above someone say that fitbit should be set to sedentary but I can't find any options for how active I am in the fitbit profile. I miss the good old days of instruction manuals!
  14015481
March 22, 2012 9:07 PM
QUOTE:

I received my fit bit today. It has added over 1000 calories (fit bit adjustment) which I definitely haven't burned. I've deleted it but it keeps adding it again and makes the number higher! How do I stop that?

Also I read above someone say that fitbit should be set to sedentary but I can't find any options for how active I am in the fitbit profile. I miss the good old days of instruction manuals!


Quick recap of steps:
1) Check your time zone on Fitbit and MFP, make sure they are the same.
2) Check your height and weight settings on both Fitbit and MFP, make sure they are also the same.
3) Check how many total calories you've burned as estimated by Fitbit. See how much the difference is between your BMR (Tools
->BMR calculator) and the Fitbit estimate.
  14779288
March 22, 2012 10:17 PM
thanks

I realised I'd accidentally put a 1 in front of my weight, so 100kg extra might make it a bit different. I still am getting extra calories added (around 400 rather than over 1000) I wonder if its because I've started at midday.
  14015481
March 23, 2012 9:15 AM
QUOTE:

thanks

I realised I'd accidentally put a 1 in front of my weight, so 100kg extra might make it a bit different. I still am getting extra calories added (around 400 rather than over 1000) I wonder if its because I've started at midday.


Re your earlier question. I have been using a fitbit for a couple years (almost) and am very perplexed at where people are setting their "fitbit activity level". I've really never noticed such a thing and if if exists I have not set it (and I've poked around in my account a lot, but perhaps I am missing something?) The only time it asked me abut my level, was when I first purchased a "premium subscription" so it had a starting point on my "trainer activity goals" (after it just adjusted to my actual activity level).

On mfp, the program needs your activity level to figure your allowance as people with active jobs burn more calories and need more food than people with desk jobs. Most mfp users don't have fitbits, so they need another way to figure out how much that person needs to eat. With the fitbit, it can calculate how active we are based on how much we move around and whatever activities we may log, so it doesn't really need us to also tell us how active we are. (Unless it is a new user setting, I forgot about since it has been a couple years, if so the fitbit should adjust to your actual activity level if you got it wrong or it changes).

Craftweewife, the fibit day starts at 12 am, so if you started another time... Just take the first partial day to get to know the device and make sure your settings are as accurate as possible and that they match your settings here (weight, height, gender, age, time zone). :-) On your first day, it does give you an allowance based either on your bmr (calories someone your height, weight, age and gender typically burn at rest) or your bmr + some light activity--which it gives you depends whether calorie estimation is on or off. In the morning you will see a calorie burn when you wake up, as Abhiforlife explained, it covers a portion of your bmr + any activity you may have had from 12am until... I typically see around 400-something when I get up, not that it is that usueful to compare as it really depends on your profile data. Happy fitbitting!
March 23, 2012 9:15 AM
QUOTE:

thanks

I realised I'd accidentally put a 1 in front of my weight, so 100kg extra might make it a bit different. I still am getting extra calories added (around 400 rather than over 1000) I wonder if its because I've started at midday.


The extra weight would have caused your BMR as calculated by fitbit to be way higher than MFP and in turn your TDEE calculated by Fitbit to be much higher as well.

400 isn't a terribly high number especially if your activity level on MFP is set to sedentary.
  14779288
March 23, 2012 9:20 AM
Sorry I misread your question about the extra calories and thought you meant morning calories. :-) Yes, what Abh said, though that really depends on your activity and every little bit adds up. It does often help to keep an eye on that while you are setting up though since i seems unusual fitbit adjustments have been alerting people if they have something wrong in their settings.
March 23, 2012 3:51 PM
Thanks for your replys. I've done NO activity this morning apart from the usual get up, have coffee, get the kids dressed etc and its given me an extra 115 calories, which I would assume would count in my normal daily sedentary activities. I'm not sure what I need to change for it to not add these random calories on.
  14015481
March 23, 2012 4:01 PM
The sedentary burn estimate is fairly low. I manage to hit the sedentary limit in ~2000 steps/day and will see an adjustment of a few calories. This is not the MFP estimate during the day either, it's at midnight when it has the total burn from Fitbit. Sedentary literally means don't do anything other than get up, dress and feed yourself.
  14779288
March 24, 2012 12:05 AM
well its added 350 calories over the day, which I'd love to eat, but I've done NO activity today. I've looked through all the fitbit settings and can't see where I'd change something for it not to log. I keep deleting it so I can see how many calories I actually can eat, but it keeps coming back.
  14015481
March 24, 2012 10:02 AM
I probably wouldn't eat that adjustment in the morning, well you probably won't need too as it is probably not likely you would go over your base goal with breakfast. :-) MFP recalculates your adjustment every time your fitbit and mfp account sync. I don't think deleting it makes any difference since it recalculates it. It can go up or down depending whether you sustain the activity level mfp bases the adjustment on. Seeing one in the morning just means you were more than sedentary this morning. I think anyone who is getting close or exceeding fitbit goals would most likely end up with a substancial adjustment on mfp with a sedentary setting since the goal of the fitbit targets is to ease us into being active. I take it as a good sign to see one whether or not I choose to eat some or all of those calories.

Remember your fitbit burn is a little similar to the old Police song "every step you take, every move you make". It is possible that you may be a little more active than you give yourself credit for. But be cautious with eating the adjustment calories at first just because they can end up decreasing (and it is a little frustrating to think you are in goal range to look the next day and see you overate a little from those adjustment calories). After a few days you may see what the pattern tends to be for your schedule and activity level.

If your settings are correct on both sites and you aren't logging false activity on fitbit (which can sometimes happen driving, on roller coasters, etc), you should be on the right track.

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