I have been using the Bodymedia armband now for almost two years. I believe it is accurate and saves me a ton of time here on Sparkpeople as I do not have to upload my fitness information in day in and out----I just sync the band in automatically with the website.
Some people believe it is too expensive but after two years---and though physically worn out it is still functional----I believe it has long ago paid for itself.
The biggest issue I have as a kindergarten teacher with sensitive skin and the metal can cause temporary irritation and the children love to press the buttons!
Fitness Minutes: (2,881)
8/26/14 11:30 P
Does using this device require you to pay a monthly subscription to Body Media?
5/17/14 4:00 P
Fitness Minutes: (72,557)
8/22/13 12:35 A
I adore my fitbit "zip" and find it is very accurate for steps taken; I checked by counting steps and also shaking it which produced no gain in steps unlike a scrappy pedometer... not sure about overall algorithm and whether it is perfect, but I have lost almost 20 lbs using it.
The integration is OK, so you do not have to log in both places, but if you remove something from SP, it stays on fitbit's site which is SUPER annoying, so I just do not use fitbit's tracking tools at all, just sync my steps to SP.
I want to remind everyone that all of the values from any monitor are guesstimates since the algorithms are based on averages. In a standard bell shaped curve 50% of any sample fall at either end of the curve meaning for 25% they are too low and for the other end 25% they are too high.
Track them as you choose with the knowledge that they are not absolute values of anything.
Fitness Minutes: (1,365)
8/21/13 9:51 P
Im considering getting a fitbit flex.Anyone have one yet and does it integrate well with this site?I would hate to have to track my calories eaten on two different apps.
Fitness Minutes: (101,683)
8/21/13 9:18 P
it seems like my fitbit is missing the stairs when I climb them
Fitness Minutes: (209,195)
22,571 8/21/13 9:10 P
I have a BodyMedia Fit and have worn it for 2.5 years and find the feedback accurate and uesful.
I also bought a used Bodybugg and I was able to register it. I did it when the ApexFitness site had it, now Bodymedia has it but you should be able to register it. It won't register as a new one, I think it was as pre-owned.
5/7/13 12:28 P
This is all really helpful.
I play roller derby and wear a BodyMedia armband at practice sometimes. I take down the before/afters on calorie burn to see what I'm burning at practice. I usually end up in the 500-600 range.
But I was recently talking to a girl who plays derby in another city, and she was saying she gets up in 1000-1200 calorie range during a practice.
We weigh about the same, and based on her descriptions of a "normal" practice for them, I feel like my practices are much more intense (we focus a lot on endurance and sprinting). I don't remember what brand of monitor she had, but I'd been curious for a while as to whether hers was high, or mine was low.
I'm thinking BodyMedia is the accurate burn, though.
I've been wearing my Bodymedia monitor for 2 years and absolutely love it. I would not trade it in for the world. It's one of several best personal investments to myself.
Fitness Minutes: (101,683)
5/4/13 10:31 A
i love mine, when i can see how many steps i have taken in a day,
5/4/13 9:22 A
Just bought a Bodybugg on Craigslist and so far I really like it. I wasn't able to register it though for the monitoring service since it was used. Still the calorie count on the wrist band is really helpful. I tend to way overestimate my calorie burn so this a really keeping me in check.
Fitness Minutes: (58,206)
4/10/13 11:22 A
I have had the bodymedia monitor for two weeks. Love it. Even though no one really knows what your doing activity wise, having the monitor makes me feel like I must get plenty of exercise data on there, or else it was a waste of time and money. It has served me well so far. I would like it if Sparkpeople did a body media challenge like they have the fitbit challenge! No wthat would be motivation! : )
Fitness Minutes: (101,683)
4/10/13 10:59 A
i love my fitbit i would love to try some other ones to see how the work
I have had a fitbit for about 2 months now and I love it. It reminds me to KEEP MOVING. Even if it isn't 100% accurate, for me that isn't the point so much as staying motivated to squeeze in extra activity where ever I can.
Fitness Minutes: (101,683)
4/9/13 8:26 P
It depends on what you are looking for, I bought a fitbit one and used it for a week and HATED IT!!!, I mean how is a tiny device that clips on my clothes suppose to be any accuracy to whta my body is really doing. I was getting HUGE numbers too for walking and such, when I was hardly doing anything.
I swapped it for a bodymedia core armband and display ( deal going on for both together $129) and found I LOVE IT!!! its 100% accurate, I forget a great deal of times I am wearing it and I don't care who sees it so I wear short and long sleeves and let it track away. I now use My Fitness Pal as whatever you track on there goes automatically to Bodymedia page to sum up your deficit for the day. It is water resistant and can go no farther than 30 meters ( i believe) underwater. CUSTOMER SERVICE IS AMAZING!!! I had a band break on me and emailed them and they sent me two out with no hassle at all! they didn't even want the broken one back. SO they take you at your word. I mean its just an amazing little device. I can't rave about it enough. Also I wouldn't go with an armband monitor as its not going off anything as well, its simply around your arm and tracks your movement not your body temp and everything that the bodymedia armband does. I mean this is my opinion, but I guarantee if you go with a Bodymedia armband you will not be disappointed!!
Fitness Minutes: (101,683)
3/17/13 11:00 P
What is the differnce on Fitbit/bodymeida. want to buy one, but i dont know what one to get. please help
I test drove a Fitbit for Spark people and found it a nice to have not need to have item. I tend to being a Luddite when it comes to fitness being very old school in my training and in the programmes create for clients. For the nerds and number crunchers I am sure they are a happy dance item but as to whether or not they improve progress toward a fitness goal I think not. It is the work you do not the numbers you monitor and record which is the secret to programme success.
My current heart rate monitor is and RPE, rate of perceived exertion which has been research proven to match up one to one with the electronic readouts. The nicest thing about using an RPE is that it self recalibrates to your physical ability every day.
Fitness Minutes: (71,953)
3/16/13 5:09 P
Ok so I have read a couple threads on the fit-bit and Google them also, and I think I want one.
Was just curious what the regular price is on these. My bf and I saw them today at target for $99. And when I was Google them kept coming across sales adds for them but they were all pretty much the same price as target.
Also as I was reading though post on here it sounds like the fit-bit one can estimate when you will lose a lbs of weight from calories consumed and calories burned? is that correct?
SOTIREDOFTHIS, thank you for the reminder. Last time I checked Costco, they were out, Today they are in stock and available for $119.99 with 3-5 business day shipping, that includes 12-months subscription. I'm looking forward to receiving mine.
Fitness Minutes: (3,419)
2/28/13 7:32 P
If you are looking to purchase the Bodymedia armband, look into purchasing it at Costco. If you crunch the numbers I think it ends up being cheaper because they give you a year subscription to Body Media's data service which you need to see all of your data. Also, if you decide that you do not like it, Costco has a very liberal return policy....Costco does not offer this in the store, you have to purchase it online and it ships free.
Also, if you are leaning towards the fitbit, they are releasing the fitbit flex soon. You wear it on your wrist and it tracks your sleep too. I am not sure how accurate it will be, but the upside is that you do not have to pay a fee for access to your data.
Hope this helps!
Fitness Minutes: (1,738)
2/28/13 6:38 P
Wow I asked and got 2 response, oh well, no biggie.
Fitness Minutes: (25,963)
11 2/7/13 12:22 P
I have the BodyMedia Fit and have been wearing it for almost 2 years (never had a problem with it).
Near the beginning, I compared their charts in Activity Manager with the MET data from a number of sources and found it to be quite accurate. In addition it has really made me more aware of my sleep problems, and helped to change my life-style to ensure I get more quality sleep.
With regard to their customer service, I have always contacted them via email and received responses the same day. Very helpful.
Lastly, I am a data geek. Numbers I can crunch in various ways in Excel always appeal to me.
I love polar hrm watches with the chest straps, they are so accurate on my calorie burn and heart rate. Im actuakly looking to buying another one now.
1/31/13 7:10 A
I like using my fitbit for daily activities. However, I do not believe it is as accurate when I am exercising or in my extremely active zone. I believe using my heart-rate monitor gives a more accurate individualized account. However, if I don't feel like changing fitbit is a good general indicator, particularly if I don't add the specifics myself.
Fitness Minutes: (59,194)
4,240 1/30/13 9:34 P
How are you liking your bodymedia. I just got mine in today. When you sync the monitor, does your Sparkpeople food diary sync also? Or do you have to reenter your food into bodymedia account. I am a little confused. thanks for your help
Fitness Minutes: (342)
12/8/12 8:05 P
I've had the bodybugg in the past and loved it except for the size. Now I just recently bought the Bodymedia Fit which in my opinion is almost the same thing but these new versions are smaller and I'm in love all over again!
12/8/12 7:22 A
I've had the Bodymedia for a while and I love it. I had the display unit replaced under warranty and had no issues with customer support. They were difficult to reach in the past but that seems to have improved greatly in recent months. I would highly recommend it. In fact, I just put my core armband up on ebay so I can upgrade to the link version.
I use Polar's Heart Rate Monitors! It's pretty close to my heart rate. For example, I have a Treadclimber that tracks my heart rate as long as I'm wearing the chest band. One day, I wore my heart rate monitor, while walking on the Treadclimber. Both had the same heart rates while working out. The calories burned were slightly off. With the Treadclimber, the calories burned would be let's say 300 calories, where the HRM would indicate 294 calories. So, I chose Polar! This of course is my opinion!
Fitness Minutes: (110,991)
1,474 11/29/12 5:56 P
I don't have a bodymedia/bugg though I imagine that might be more accurate since they use more sensors and track perspiration and body temperature as well as movement. I do have a fitbit and have for more than two years. I may be in the fitbit sweet zone, as it seems pretty accurate for me as near as I can tell. I think either of these or other trackers like a Nike Fuel, pedometer, jawbone up, striive etc. can be either great or a waste of money depending on the individual.
Since I only have a fitbit and have felt no need to change, I'll just explain with that device. I also have a heart rate monitor I usually wear for intentional exercise including some types that it would not accurately estimate calorie burn for (they really are only set up for aerobic exercise from my understanding). I think it helps if you start understanding any device has limits and all are giving estimates not direct measures. As long as it is in the ballpark and consistent it can work and it may depend on what you want it to do for you.
The fitbit really only tracks movement and only movement it can pickup from where it is placed. It is calibrated to be worn on the torso between the hip and bra area on the chest. I should say I wear mine slightly outside the suggested area--I wear it on my bra where the strap and cup connect because that just works better for me to keep it discreet and convenient. That placement hasn't compromised accuracy for me as near as I can tell. I just did a step test where I took one hundred counted steps and watched the fitbit count when done. The first time, I complicated it too much with lateral steps, forward and backward and it counted 105 steps. I tried again with just forward and backward and it counted 101 steps. I may have had an error in coordinating my stepping and counting, but I think it is close enough.
I calibrated my walking and running average stride settings by doing one lap walking on a track and one lap jogging. I basically used a formula that divided the distance by the number of steps that the fitbit counted in those laps. Since doing this, my distance and pace stats are always the same or close to what I find if I return to that track, use a treadmill, or use a GPS app. It is more consistent than the GPS app on my phone, as I've noticed with the GPS app sometimes my away and return trips on the exact same route, the same day vary more form each other than the fitbit records for those same trips. Some people are not able to get the stride as accurate, so it may depend how variable your actual strides are. So there are limits.
The other thing I judge it by is whether the four activity levels fitbit assigns to each minute matches my perceived exertion. Firtbit classes activity into sedentary, lightly active, fairly active and very active by how much and how fast you move in that time period. Well, that is more variable. It is pretty good with step based activity now my strides are calibrated, and I think it is good for an overall picture of whether I was either sedentary or lightly active or more for a non-exercise period of time. But it will underestimate exertion from well, just about any activity involving resistance or not involving movements that can be translated into steps. This can be fixed by manually logging those activities.
The floors is also variable in accuracy. It credits you with a floor if you are moving through 10 foot elevation gains. But it can be fooled by changes in air pressure or if your stair floor is less than 10 feet it won't consistently count it. I sometimes do stair laps in my apartment building 5 floors up and 5 down. Sometimes it is spot on, and sometimes it misses floors (usually just one or two but sometimes 5 floors will be missed if I do a lot of laps). It usually catches them if I walk at a steady pace and don't stop up and down, but if I run the laps or meet a neighbor and pause it can vary.
Calorie burn... How do we really know? For me, for cardio activity including step like movements and little or no added resistance it often matches my Polar heart rate monitor calorie burn or is close. This has included jogging, jump roping, some dance, and cardio kickboxing dvds. For walking on flat ground it masures higher than my hrm--a little not too bad. For some vigorous cardio or anything involving resistance it measures low. I usually just log the activity if it is much different (like 50 calories for an hour) and then I check if that resulting activity level matches my perceived exertion. I know this is wrong for accuracy, but I use my hrm burn for strength training mainly to get the right exertion level as I don't like seeing a brisk walk rated as more vigorous than kettlebell circuits. My hrm tends to give me low burn credit (almost always lower than the database entries on Spark and Fitbit and other sites) so even if it is wrong it is still adding less than if I log it from a database.
My results in bodyweight have been pretty much in line with what fitbit numbers would predict if I am logging food (sometimes I fall off the wagon with logging food). So even if the numbers are flawed estimates, they are close enough for me. When I log the way I describe, I had found I lost a pound whenever fitbit estimated I had a deficit between 2500 and 4000. I don't think that is too bad. It would not give any after burn credit, as near as I can tell, just based on movement (or what you log) and whatever bmr estimate they use.
I experimented in October with no manual logging of activity including strength training (other than two swimming sessions as I wasn't wearing my fitbit in the water). That month I had the best loss results so perhaps that was actually most accurate for my calorie burn. I did return t logging some activity though as I like to use it as a log and archive. But you may not need to log strength training and be fine. There are quite a few activities most users prefer to log though such as cycling, yoga, rowing, etc. There are a few GPS apps and heart rate monitor apps that can log to fitbit and you can always manually log so there are options depending on your preference. I don't have any affiliation with fitbit other than being a long time user and it seems I have pretty good luck with mine overall.
I was originally interested in the bugg or media. The main reason I didn't go that route is it was more expensive, involved a monthly fee and involved wearing an armband. I know I would tire of wearing the arm band even if it is comfortable so that was the main dealbreaker for me. These are only useful in helping improve activity levels if we use them consistently and I feared I might not use the bugg/media as consistently as the fitbit.
11/29/12 4:41 P
only been two days, but I love my bodymedia
Fitness Minutes: (108,468)
3,984 9/27/12 11:00 A
In my opinion, after doing research on various body monitors, I am left very seceptical that they do what they claim. Small not on the after burn thing. The best research I have seen so far comes from work using a Metabolic Chamber. It suggest that after burn for any exercises types is very limited (both strength and HITS) and typically is in the 10s of calories per hour for less than 14 hours.
I should note I have not used one of these, but I have tried to keep up with review, etc. My opinion is that you can estimate calories just about as well with various free trackers and looking at your results as you can with Body Monitors and heart rate monitors (I am a user of a heart rate monitor, but when cross comparing Calorie estimates with other estimates I found no significan difference.)
9/27/12 12:05 A
For a while I thought about getting one. I did my research and I found that fitbit would have been best for me. I ended up not getting that because I finally determined it would be useless and I didn't have money to waste.
Fitness Minutes: (69,867)
3,526 9/25/12 10:23 P
I adore my FitBit - I don't think I could live without it. It really helps keep me motivated!
Fitness Minutes: (209,195)
22,571 9/25/12 9:32 P
I love my BodyMedia Fit too. I have improved my sleep with the feedback it gives.
I love my bodymedia fit~~~ I have actually compared the numbers on an excel spreadsheet to that of Spark. Pretty much dead on! I know the armband is a pain, but once you wear it for a bit, you forget it is there.
I have another teammate that wears a bodymedia and she loves it as well!
Fitness Minutes: (1,578)
45 9/25/12 4:06 P
Oh, and for an overall review, here is my take: I found the BodyMedia Fit to be very accurate and it provided great data. It was very accurate regarding my sleep and appeared to be extremely accurate regarding calorie burn and steps taken. I loved having the data and tracking myself. The only downside was the arm band. I am a psychiatrist and live in Georgia. For me, having the armband was really distracting and I constantly had to explain to patients what it was (I see people almost every thirty minutes). It just became a nuisance. It gets really hot here in Georgia so I couldn't wear long sleeves all of the time to hide it and it itched sometimes. I wanted something more discreet. So after a year of not wearing my BodyMedia (because of reasons listed above), I purchased a FitBit.
I think the FitBit overestimates the number of steps I take (actually I know it does because I tracked it one day). But it is much more discreet. I clip it on my bra and no one knows it is there. It doesn't cost extra for a display like the BodyMedia does. I didn't purchase the display for the Body Media, so I had to log on every time I wanted to check my burn. Having the constant data from the FitBit was much more motivating. The overall calorie burn was very similar between the two devices, so I think it is just as accurate as the BodyMedia (although BodyMedia apparently has more ways to track your burn) It is also cheaper. The only downsides were that it didn't track my sleep as well and it can easily get lost in the washing machine since it is so small and discreet. That happened once, but it still actually works fine. So there is my take on it. If I had to do it again, I'd probably go with the FitBit, but that's just me.
Fitness Minutes: (1,578)
45 9/25/12 3:57 P
I have both a BodyMedia and a FitBit (long story). The point of those is that you don't have to enter them manually. Particularly with the BodyMedia, it will continue to track the calories you burn even during strength training. The BodyMedia is really accurate. I found that when I did a HIIT workout, my calorie burn would be up a little bit the next day, reflecting the afterburn effect. I found that most online trackers were overestimating my calorie burn during strength training.
Fitness Minutes: (15,360)
9,707 9/25/12 3:35 P
Attempting to use a monitor for calorie burn during strength training isn't a good idea; the equations don't match up, and it's too easy to grossly overestimate your calorie burn if you wear a heart rate monitor while strength training. It's not cardio. Strength training burn is more indirect-- afterburn and boosted metabolism over time. Not so much on the active calorie burn. :)
Hello all! I'm wanting to purchase a body/fitness monitor, but with so many options, I'm a little overwhelmed. I've read great things about nearly all of them, and so far I'm leaning toward Bodymedia. But here's my situation, I do a lot of weightlifting, so I'm needing some way to track that. I've found that some are compatible with heart rate monitors, and I can use that to track calories, and others you have to manually enter your exercises into the online tracker.
Do you guys have any suggestions or recommendations? I'd love to hear your reviews of any monitors that you've tried, or that you've heard about!! Thanks in advance!!
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