Monday, January 5, 2015

Fitbit Trial Run

I asked for one thing for Christmas - the Fitbit Flex.  My husband came through. - I got the Fitbit plus three extra bands. He also stuffed my stocking to overflowing with other goodies :)

My husband teases me that I am not as tech savvy as I think I am. This Fitbit might be showing me that he is a little right (but I will deny I wrote this post - Blogger gets hacked all the time, right??)  First, it was several days before I even took it out of the package. To prepare myself, I watched a couple of YouTube videos on how to set it up. And I still have a few issues...more on that in the "help me" section of this post.

Day 1 - 2863 steps - (Friday) I didn't get it set up until around 11 a.m. and I was a work all day (at my sedentary job).

Day 2 - 5792 steps - (Saturday) Most of my steps were in the morning. A friend and I went on an early morning outdoor photography expedition. We were practicing our skills in the cold January rain...don't judge :) The afternoon/evening involved quite a bit of couch time engrossed in binge watching a new (to us) tv series.

A few pictures from our cold rainy morning photo session.

Day 3 - 5282 steps - (Sunday)  Not sure how I got this many steps. I spent the morning sitting at a cheerleading competition, 3 hours in the car and more hours watching NFL playoff football and our show.

I borrowed this picture my brother-in-law took...hope he doesn't mind :)

Day 4 - 5003 steps and counting - (Monday)  Back to work! I did a bit of extra walking around testing the step counter. Turns out it is 42 steps from my desk to the back door.

The first few days I just wanted to see what my normal activity looked like. Tomorrow it is on like Donkey Kong. I will be intentionally taking extra steps to move the numbers on my Fitbit. It is ridiculously cold here this week so there probably won't be outdoor walking for me. I am going to get out my Walk Away the Pounds DVDs for some indoor walking - I wonder if those will work for my step count. 

Help Me - a few questions for those of you in the know

Can you get the Fitbit wet? I have been hyper concerned about it getting water splashed on it. I don't want to be constantly taking it off - I know I will forget to put it back on at some point. 

What does Fitbit consider very active minutes?  My best so far is 5 minutes. Granted I haven't tried, but I am curious if my "walking for exercise" will be considered active enough.

What is the calories burned section based on?  I know 3900 steps does not equal 1100 calories.

One of the features I was most excited to try was the sleep monitor. The first night worked great I slept 5 hours and 56 minutes - the time time frame was correct and it showed 14 restless times during the night.  The next two nights it went crazy. Maybe it got confused by my "couch coma".  It has me "sleeping" from 12:21p until 4:22a - pretty random times. The first night I didn't tell it to start logging sleep - I guess it just knew.  Last night I specifically asked it to start logging sleep - clearly, I didn't do something right. It said I was sleeping from 1:19p until 5:20a.

I am going to do some research on these issues, but in the meantime if you have any tips you could throw my way I would appreciate them :)


  1. Great rainy day pics! Yes, you can get the fitbit wet but I wouldn't 'test' the waters so to speak by submerging it. I think sweat and washing of hands is fine as long as you don't dunk the fitbit. I think the very active minutes means constant movement (like if you were actively walking, running, playing tennis, etc.) Not sure about the calories burned question. Maybe someone else can jump in and help with that one :)

    1. Thanks - I love photo outings - we are trying to make it a monthly challenge this year. I am going to try a short walk at lunch and see what the Fitbit says about active minutes.

  2. my fit bit says you can shower in it.. but discourages swimming.. so wet is ok but no submerging.
    active minutes are quick movements... it can tell walking from jogging... for example if you "jog" up the stairs it can tell that from just should have come with a chip to plug into your computer... you can get online and put in your weight and information.. it will base it on that vs. a 140 lb woman like most machines use as a base
    i never used the sleep aspect... so i have no answers there.... have fun with it.. i love mine !!


    1. Nancy!!! It is so good to hear from you. I think about you often - you were my very first reader/commenter :) I hope all is well in your world. I haven't tried the chip for the computer yet - I have been using the app on my phone.

  3. I don't have the Fitbit, but I know the Jawbone counts calories burned, not only workout calories, but resting calories, you know, the usual ones you burn by just living. Maybe that's why the number was so high?

    Good luck with it. I love my jawbone so I hope you end up loving your Fitbit!

    1. So far I like it and I think it will be a fun tool :)

  4. Answers!
    - Yes, you can get it wet. I swim with it and shower with it. No problems. You can't go in deep water with it, but anything ten feet or under is fine.
    - I looked up active minutes when I first got my fitbit. You can find the definition for active minutes here:
    - Calories burned is based on your base metabolic rate and your movement. That means that if you sat in one place all day and didn't move at all, it would still show you the amount of calories your body burns for just existing. Any walking that you do above and beyond that adds to the calories. You can find your BMR here:
    - For sleep, you gave to tell it you are going to sleep and when you are waking up. You can also edit the times through both the app and the website platform, in case you forget or there is an error.

    Hope that helps!

    1. Okay, so can you just come to my house and be my personal assistant??? Thank you for all the information and the links :) I did figure out last night how to tell it I was going to sleep and then when I woke up and it worked fine. I am heading out for a brief walk at lunch time so I will see if that gives me some active minutes.