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DAJAMOGU1's Photo DAJAMOGU1 Posts: 168
2/20/13 6:53 A

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I ignore the Spark telling me I'm under calories. I use Fitbit and am losing so all is well!

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VTRICIA's Photo VTRICIA Posts: 2,030
2/20/13 12:14 A

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I was confused by these numbers as well until I went back to the "calorie differential over time" report here on sparkpeople. That shows my basal metabolic rate of 1770 calories (I'm 5 7.5 and 160) subtracted from Fitbit's estimate (of about 2000 calories). This makes a lot more sense than what I see in the fitness tracker, which can be like 400 or 500 calories!

The exercise calories is simply the yellow and red calories (fairly active and very active) from fitbit.

I actually thing the fitbit is tuned to err on the low side. I read a review on Amazon from a guy wearing a fitbit and a bodymedia fit side by side, and the fitbit was lower. Though someone else told me they wore a fitbit with a bodybugg (older bodymedia product) and the fitbit was higher.

Edited by: VTRICIA at: 2/20/2013 (00:14)
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SLYSAM's Photo SLYSAM SparkPoints: (39,869)
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2/18/13 10:54 A

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#LHAAS8

The one thing I will say about the activity calories that Spark pulls from fitbit. Te activity minutes are your fairly active and very active minutes. With your job, you will have a lot of them. I really cannot work out how Spark comes up with the calorie burn, but I am pretty certain it includes BMR. So when I figured out what to enter into my "exercise calorie" goal, I looked at a typical completed week. Then I deducted the minutes from the weekly calorie burn it lists (my bmr is a little less than a calorie per minute, so I rounded up, at your weight yours might be similar but that might depend on your height and age.) Then I rounded up to an even 100 or so. I just ignore the "burning too much" message when it appears later in the week. It isn't really meant for the way Spark/fitbit link as usually we would only be logging intentional cardio. The other thing is to make sure your spark deadline matches the date fitbit predicts you will reach your goal. Hopefully, that would make your Spark allowance range more in line with your typical fitbit calorie burns.

For another basis of comparison. Try running your stats through a calculator that estimates your TDEE (total daily energy expenditure). Choose the "extra active" option, as it does sound like you are very active (physical job + intentional exercise). See if that number for your height, weight, age and gender is anywhere near your fitbit burn on your work days.

Here is one to try: thefitgirls.com/tdee-calculator.aspx Generally these are multiplying your bmr by a number. The number depends on the activity level you choose. My current weight range is similar to yours (right now fluctuating between 139 on a low day-142 on a higher day). I ran my stats in this with the highest activity level and it gave me something like 2,500. I've not personally see that high of a calorie burn estimate on my fitbit account, but most likely I am just not active enough to see it.

Edited by: SLYSAM at: 2/18/2013 (11:00)
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ALTHATJAZVA SparkPoints: (36,509)
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2/17/13 12:03 P

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No matter what you decide to do, the first step is to realize the SP and Fitbit are just indicators. They are collections of numbers to help you gauge your activity level for a given day. The real questions to ask yourself are 1) How do you feel; 2) if your goal is to lose weight are you losing weight at an acceptable rate, if you're trying to maintain are you, or are you gaining or losing week to week; 3) no matter what the scales or the numbers in SP and Fitbit say, how are your clothes fitting (i.e. what's your body doing)?

Don't get hung up on the numbers.

OAKBORN's Photo OAKBORN SparkPoints: (101,932)
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2/17/13 10:53 A

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I just log my exercise like I always have and delete the FitBit calories burned. Takes just a second and I feel like it's more accurate that way.

Jenniphred

Each day got through means one or two less mistakes remain to be made (Chess)

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TESSLER65's Photo TESSLER65 Posts: 94
2/17/13 9:31 A

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I have both accounts synced, with both accounts set for me to reach my goal weight at the same time. I totally ignore SP yelling at me that I'm not eating enough because it is irrelevant for me, and I try to hit the range of calories that FB tells me I should eat based on my activity level for the day. Most of the time, FB has me eating within my SP calorie range.

My ticker reminds me that activity, fitness and good health are a gift I'm giving myself. How generous will I choose to be this month?


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SLASALLE's Photo SLASALLE SparkPoints: (169,240)
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2/17/13 8:55 A

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I love my FitBit, but I use it for motivating me, making me take extra steps and sleep. I actually unsunk my FitBit from Spark because FitBit was counting every step I took (like even going from my office to the bathroom) and converting it to calories burned. In other words, it was impossible for me to track via FitBit my actual cardio workouts. To me, that made it inaccurate numbers to work with.

So I use Spark to log my food and exercise, and FitBit to help motivate me on steps (and it truly does) and watch sleep patterns.

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MONGO2TEN's Photo MONGO2TEN Posts: 10,883
2/17/13 4:37 A

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Thanks for this post. I've been getting discouraged since getting my fitbit because I can never seem to get the calorie burn up to the 2184 fitbit has set as my daily goal. I run 6 to 8 miles every other day and on my off days I use an elliptical and/or exercise bike. I'm up and down stairs, usually 25 to 50 times a day and constantly moving. It will credit me for the steps, and I get a good calorie burn for the days I run, but nothing else. I'm going to try deleting the activities and adding them in myself.



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L-RIOT's Photo L-RIOT Posts: 348
2/16/13 8:29 P

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So I took fitbit off of my sparkpeople so I have to put it in myself now. Its hard to say though how many cal I'm burning at work. I can track steps on here and I like that but how do I know what I've really burned?

Also, I had to untrack a lot of things on my fitness to get my nutrition to the levels I should be at. I know in a week, its going to yell at me saying I've burned too much and not eating enough. This is so hard. Thank you though everyone for your help. I think I might have a handle on this. If anyone has other advice to what I can do, let me know!

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ROCKMAN6797's Photo ROCKMAN6797 Posts: 4,287
2/16/13 7:02 P

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@ VIKINGSMOMDE:

Actually your "magic" math shows that the calories your FB states you are "burning" is spot on. If you create a calorie deficit of 750 calories per day then you should be losing 1.5 pounds per week (750 calories x 7 days = 5,250 calories/3,500 calories per pound = 1.5 pounds).


Raśl
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VIKINGSMOMDE SparkPoints: (22,787)
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2/16/13 4:58 P

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I love the fact that FitBit tracks my steps & mileage and feeds that over to SP ... but ... that is not a "workout" to me - that's just life. I have an active job also but feel like my body is used to most of that activity.

I delete the fitness feeds from FitBit and put in my own data when I actually workout. I also give myself a 100 calorie general fitness "credit" on days when I have a FitBit burn of over 2200 calories prior to any workouts. Between my workouts & my FitBit extra credits, I have my exercise calories set at 2,000.

I VERY closely watch my FitBit burn numbers (which IMO are exaggerated) and try not eat less than 750 calories than what it says. So, for example, yesterday it told me that I "burned" 2400. I ate around 1650 (still in my Spark range). That's a booked 750 calorie deficit, which IMO is really more like a 500 calorie deficit.

I've been losing about 1lb - 1 1/2lbs per week with this magic math.

I learned the HARD way that if I eat at a deficit greater than 750 calories, my body doesn't give up the weight.

As an FYI, I'm 5'3", 155.8. My Spark range goes up to 1760.


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ROCKMAN6797's Photo ROCKMAN6797 Posts: 4,287
2/16/13 3:46 P

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@ LHAAS8:

I would ignore the SP messages and leave the FB entries. Understand that the FB is more than just a pedometer. The 2500 calories that it shows you are burning is ALL of the calories that your body burned for the day. Using this figure if you eat 2000 calories per day you will be creating a 500 calories per day deficit. This will lead to a one pound per week weight loss. You might consider using the FB FOOD PLAN option instead. There you are able to set-up how aggressively you want to lose weight, i.e., 0.5-2lbs per week. Then by logging your food on SP and syncing with FB you should be able to lose weight at the rate you selected. Finally the beauty of the FB FOOD PLAN option is that is is static so on those days you are not very active it will adjust how many calories you can take on that day and on those days that you are more active it will increase the number of calories you can consume. The SP plan does not do that. It offers averages which work fine as long as you are consistent with your workout schedule. I had success with SP by staying on the low end of the suggested calories but I have been able to maintain by using the FB option.
I am sorry for the long response. If you have any more questions, please post.

Raśl
Leader of the FitBit Users Unite! SparkTeam
www.fitbit.com/user/228NLM
~Keep moving people!~
^^^You got this!^^^
*** Just Do! ***


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_VALEO_'s Photo _VALEO_ Posts: 12,328
2/16/13 8:46 A

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Lindsay: I checked your trackers on your page, and noticed that you have your Fitbit entries in your Fitness tracker instead of your workout entries.
I delete those entries, and only entry my "real" workouts because the number displayed by Fitbit included any calories burnt (from breathing to sleeping)---not the extra ones we try to burn to create a calorie differential. SP doesn't take that into account (it is already included in your BMR on SP), and the high number displayed in your fitness tracker comes from "workout" according to SP--that's why you are recommended to eat more. It is like counting twice the same calories burnt.
Does it make sense?

I'd recommend you to try to log in your workouts, and delete your fitbit entries (every day, check back the day before to make sure Fitbit hasn't synced again this day too) during a week, and see how it goes. It should give you a more accurate calories range to reach.

Donna made a valid point. Check what you entered as activity level (should read active for you), your job is now part of your "normal" routine, and to burn calories, you need to trick your body with a new routine.

Edited by: _VALEO_ at: 2/16/2013 (08:51)
Valerie

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"To be is to do" - Kant
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STITCHERFRIEND's Photo STITCHERFRIEND Posts: 1,065
2/16/13 7:56 A

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Spark always tells me I'm not eating enough so I ignore that message. LOL
Part of why you get to eat more is your activity level and you are young so your bmr allows for more calories. You have a very active job so that requires more calories. It's a balancing game we have to play. I would recommend that you try 1200-1500 for active days and 1500-1800 for active days. The one factor that none of the 2 systems take into account for is our bodies get used to our daily routines and can actually burn calories efficiently. So while if I took on your job for a day I'd burn a ton of calories pushing beds and doing all those stairs and walking for you it's normal and you would have to increase your activity to burn the same amount. I know it doesn't seem fair but I've tried and tested this fact and that is how it works for me.
Hope this helps some...and no, I'm not an expert just played this game a lot.




Donna



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L-RIOT's Photo L-RIOT Posts: 348
2/16/13 7:53 A

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That's the really confusing part because my actual fitbit says that I burned over 2500 cal yesterday. I know that you're suppose to eat less then what you burn but its hard to say what I actually burn. I have my fitbit linked into sparkpeople and it doesn't post the 2500 cal I burned, it posts the distance I walked, 11.05, and then it posts to my cardio to say I've burned 1173 cal that day.

So should I go with what it says here on spark that I've only burned 1173 and eat less then that? Sorry, its early, I'm going to have to read your advice again and really look into this but on a normal day I walk about 10 miles says fitbit along with 20-70 flights of stairs. What should I be eating??

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L-RIOT's Photo L-RIOT Posts: 348
2/16/13 7:48 A

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Drat! I went in and changed the cal I want to burn during the week and now its put my cal to eat over 3000!!! I'm so confused!!!!

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L-RIOT's Photo L-RIOT Posts: 348
2/16/13 7:44 A

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On fitbit and on spark, I have it set up for me to lose or to get to my goal by march 2013. My goal on spark is to not have spark tell me I've burnt so many cal and that I'm not eating enough. I don't know how to fix this. I am 29 and 5 foot 6 and 139 lbs. Its hard to track anything when fitbit talks to spark and its saying that I've burnt a lot more then I did. I did go to the boards and I was told to come here to figure out what to do. I am pretty active but I don't think I'm burning as much as fitbit is saying.

I haven't been losing weight because the info spark is giving me is wrong but I think that's because fitbit is telling spark that I've burnt a lot. Then spark tells me I'm not eating enough and then I think I'm doing it all wrong. I know you should eat less then you burn but this is so confusing. I did have a wrist hrm but since it was on my wrist, it didn't track when I was pushing a pt around the hospital.

Eck this shouldn't be so hard!

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INGMARIE's Photo INGMARIE Posts: 8,370
2/16/13 7:25 A

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Hi there, that sounds confusing, yes. when you set up the spark page what did you enter as activity level? you could change it to a lesser degree,
are you loosing weight at all ?
if not change the activity and spark will change calorie intake.

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_VALEO_'s Photo _VALEO_ Posts: 12,328
2/16/13 7:22 A

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This is not an easy question, but a very interesting one.
I'm going to give it a try, but I am not a coach nor a dietician (you might want to try the Message boards to get a more professional answer to your question.)

What I can say is that your device (fitbit) or SP only gives you an average number of calories burnt. This average might be too high or too low depending on your BMR (age, height, weight, activity)
To avoid being disappointed, I always pick the lowest number whatever the device.
Please note that Fibit is an accelerometer device, not a HRM!
To illustrate that: when I go cross-country skiing, fitbit doesn't display many calories burnt because my moves are very regular and I don't jump all over the place, but let me tell you that I burn a lot, much more that when I walk in place in front of my TV with my dumbells--and for that activity, my Fitbit credits me with (way too) many calories burnt.

I don't know your age nor your height (I can see your weight in your ticker! Congrats!), but it is true that the 2,970 - 3,320 range seems quite high--seems like a range for an athlete training for a champhionship.

The questions you might want to ask yourself are:
How are you doing with 1500-1700 on days that are less active, and 2000-2300 on active days? Do you still lose weight? Have you been experiencing a plateau lately?

Edited by: _VALEO_ at: 2/16/2013 (07:29)
Valerie

"To do is to be" - Nietzsche
"To be is to do" - Kant
"Do Be Do Be Do" - Sinatra



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__AMY__ Posts: 1,180
2/16/13 6:51 A

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Wow! I am envious of your good health. The last tome I walked I was 15 years old.

Have you ever looked into Weightwatchers? I have used it off and on most of my adult life. I also track calories here.

On WW the lower the points. The healthier it is . It's more complicated than that, tho. There's a very active team here on Sparkpeople also

======================================

Interested in walking away the pounds?
teams.sparkpeople.com/WATP




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L-RIOT's Photo L-RIOT Posts: 348
2/16/13 6:29 A

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Sparkpeople tells me that I should be eating 2,970 - 3,320 cals for all of the cals I burn during the week. I burn about or equal to 10420 cal a week. This number seems high for me to eat and to lose weight. Sparkpeople is telling me that I am not eating enough to help with my weight loss. I don't eat as much as it wants me to in cal because it seems so high. I eat about 1500-1700 on days that are less active, and 2000-2300 on active days. This seems way too high!!!

I work at a hospital and on my down time, I walk/climb stairs. This means I am walking for at minimum 9 hours because I work 10 hour shifts. In that time I climb all the stairs I can find and any hall that I come across. I only stop to do my job and that involves pushing people in beds, wheelchairs, and all other ways to move a person in the hospital down these same halls and up and down ramps. I track my cal burn through my fitbit that tracks my steps and the floors I climbed. I don't want SP to tell me to eat more when I can't hardly eat more then 2300 in a day, even on my best day ha ha!

That's the really confusing part because my actual fitbit says that I burned over 2500 cal yesterday. I know that you're suppose to eat less then what you burn but its hard to say what I actually burn. I have my fitbit linked into sparkpeople and it doesn't post the 2500 cal I burned, it posts the distance I walked, 11.05, and then it posts to my cardio to say I've burned 1173 cal that day.

So should I go with what it says here on spark that I've only burned 1173 and eat less then that? Sorry, its early, I'm going to have to read your advice again and really look into this but on a normal day I walk about 10 miles says fitbit along with 20-70 flights of stairs. What should I be eating??

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