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Old 07-10-13, 08:58 AM  
firmaholic
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Fitbit Zip ?

Hi guys,

I need your expert input again. . I just purchased the fit bit zip yesterday. All I ever had experience with prior to fitbit is weight Watcher's Active Link. I just set it up this morning and started using it. It right away gave me 300 (or so) calories burned and it seems like it counts steps two at a time. Lol. From my previous experience with active link, I found that gadget to be conservative. The zip feels like it really overestimates. Has any one found it to be so? For those who have/had both fitbit zip and fitbit one, is one more accurate than the zip??

TIA,

Julia
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Old 07-10-13, 09:04 AM  
ellaenchanted
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
I have the One and it is very accurate with steps. Never tried a Zip, though.
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Old 07-10-13, 09:59 AM  
glavtx
VF Supporter
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: texas
I had an Ultra, and after I killed it in the washing machine got a One. Both of mine have been accurate on counting steps, and the only time I compared the calorie count to the one on my treadmill it was very close. (The treadmill always showed less than my heart rate monitor, though.)

One thing I'll mention is that it gives you a calorie burn for sleeping, too, so that may be where the 300 came from. It takes your weight, sex, and height into account and gives you a basal metabolic rate.
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Old 07-10-13, 10:14 AM  
firmaholic
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
I have a zip, so I didn't wear it at night during sleep, just set it up. I think I will upgrade to one.
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Old 07-10-13, 10:22 AM  
suegy3
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
I bought the Zip Sunday and its very accurate. I walked a certain amount of steps and counted them them checked and the Fitbit was dead on. They suggest certain areas to wear it for accuracy. I wear mine on my bra towards the center in front.
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Old 07-10-13, 10:26 AM  
lilmonkey2
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: Northeast Ohio
I have a zip and yesterday I walked--according to MapMyWalk, just over 3 miles. My zip only registered 2.75 miles (I put it on right before I left, and started my MMW route at the same time). One of those devices is wrong, though I'm not sure which. Otherwise, it seems to be pretty accurate to me, though I don't pay super close attention to it or my stats other than to just get an idea of my activity level as the day goes on.
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Old 07-10-13, 04:00 PM  
slysam
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Quote:
Originally Posted by lilmonkey2 View Post
I have a zip and yesterday I walked--according to MapMyWalk, just over 3 miles. My zip only registered 2.75 miles (I put it on right before I left, and started my MMW route at the same time). One of those devices is wrong, though I'm not sure which. Otherwise, it seems to be pretty accurate to me, though I don't pay super close attention to it or my stats other than to just get an idea of my activity level as the day goes on.
It could be either or both. :-) So the fitbit distance has to do with applying your walking or running stride length to your steps. Fitbit decides whether to apply the walking or running stride depending on the movement it senses. If you didn't calibrate your stride lengths, fitbit estimates it using your height and gender. The default estimate is good for some and not for others. It sounds like it is a little short for you--probably not be a lot though. When we are talking thousands of steps an inch or so can make a big difference. I actually calibrated my strides for walking and running by doing laps on a track. You basically divide the fitbit counted steps by the actual distance. I is easier to do with the other fitbit's that use a timer since I could make an activity record that shows the activity in isolation from daily totals. The zip doesn't have this feature, so I guess you would need to look at and note your step count before your first step and the step count as soon as you finish. I can post the formula I used if you want.

Anyway, I've noticed when I walk on a measured track, my phone GPS always slightly overestimates the distance. Not by a lot by by .1 - .15 a mile depending. My understanding is that phone GPS's are not super precise, but they should be pretty close.
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Old 07-10-13, 04:13 PM  
slysam
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
[QUOTE=firmaholic;2256718]I need your expert input again. . I just purchased the fit bit zip yesterday. All I ever had experience with prior to fitbit is weight Watcher's Active Link. I just set it up this morning and started using it. It right away gave me 300 (or so) calories burned and it seems like it counts steps two at a time. Lol. From my previous experience with active link, I found that gadget to be conservative. The zip feels like it really overestimates. Has any one found it to be so? For those who have/had both fitbit zip and fitbit one, is one more accurate than the zip??/QUOTE]

I don't have an Active Link but Fitbit will be different... I have a Fitbit One and previously had an Ultra and an even older model before that.

Your Fitbit calorie burn includes a portion of your BMR each minute that has passed. I think the BMR formula Fitbit uses is similar to the Mifflin. So for me, something like 1230 of my total calorie burn on fitbit is just my BMR by the time the day is complete. I think the 300 calories you saw was a portion of your BMR between 12am and the time you set up the fitbit.

I found all my fitbits to be pretty accurate with counting steps. If anything, they miss steps not overcount them for me. I wear it either attached to my bra or my underpants waistband depending on what I am wearing and the activity. Usually it is on the bra--I move it to my hip area when I do dancing that uses very soft steps because it misses most of those steps otherwise. It counts each footfall as a step--sort of. The accelerometer in the fitbit tracks movement forward and back, right to left and up and down. It isn't really a pedometer (they work a little differently), but it somehow translates the movement data into "steps". So sometimes larger torso movements, jumps, etc also are credited as steps. I think this is fine in terms of the accuracy of the activity and calorie burn estimates, but it can alter how accurate the distance stats are. I.E. if you were running laps on a track then stopping periodically to do jumping jacks--even if your fitbit were perfectly calibrated the distance would probably be farther than you actually ran because it would count your jumping jacks as "steps". This should reflect the effort you put into it though. In my experience, the main weakness with fitbit is it doesn't have a way to factor in resistance from weights, bands, bodyweight exercises, isometrics, etc so it will usually underestimate for any resistance activity. So if anything, it might be underestimating your total activity if you do weights, yoga, pilates, use cardio machines with resistance settings, bands, kettlebells, many bodyweight or bootcamp workouts, barre, etc.

I think Active Link has a similar accelerometer but is probably programmed differently. Doesn't it have you do a base week then in the future credit you for your activity beyond your base level? Fitbit will always be showing your totals as it estimates it.
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Old 07-10-13, 08:16 PM  
suegy3
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
I wanted to add to slysam's post...I agree that the Fitbit under estimates steps. This is not based on my personal knowledge but when I was reading and deciding which pedometer to get, I saw people complaining that they had higher steps with other pedometers. I would actually prefer something more conservative because I don't want over inflated numbers.

Also, a guy at my job had the Zip, One and now he has the Flex. He said that they are all accurate and his numbers haven't changed. But he prefers the Flex because it's on his wrist and he doesn't have to worry about it. He complained that with the Zip and One, he'd forget it on his clothes and it would end up in the wash. Although he said it still worked.
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Old 07-10-13, 10:15 PM  
jerebo
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
I have a Fitbit zip and have found it to be accurate with step counting. I wouldn't count on it for a good estimate of mileage for reasons that slysam mentioned.

I really like mine!
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