1. Patients launch $1.27 million crowdfunding campaign for ME/CFS gut microbiome study.
    Check out the website, Facebook and Twitter. Join in donate and spread the word!
Join the National PR Campaign for ME: Power to the Patient (P2tP)
Have you had enough of all the neglect and abuse of ME/CFS patients? Gabby Klein says now is the time for a National PR Campaign for ME/CFS to impress a change. Join the Patient Revolution to restore power to ME patients ...
Discuss the article on the Forums.

Fitbit: ultra-pedometer for auto-tracking activity

Discussion in 'Lifestyle Management' started by Sasha, Sep 4, 2012.

  1. Sasha

    Sasha Fine, thank you

    Messages:
    8,375
    Likes:
    7,447
    UK
    Not quite sure which subforum this belongs in but an interesting blog post from CFS Patient Advocate on a pedometer that auto-uploads its data to your computer and allows you an objective way of tracking your activity over time - especially good for those of us on new treatments that can take months to kick in where it can be hard to be sure we're consistent in our ideas of what we're doing:

    http://cfspatientadvocate.blogspot.co.uk/2012/09/fitbit_2.html
     
  2. urbantravels

    urbantravels disjecta membra

    Messages:
    1,333
    Likes:
    507
    Los Angeles, CA
    I've been thinking about getting a FitBit, literally for years at this point. I'd like to go ahead and pull the trigger now, as I have an additional need to document my low activity levels. OK, don't ask me why, it just makes me upset.

    But I need to be able to print out the data ON PAPER, and it's not clear to me that the FitBit software enables me to do that - either by directly printing it out or by exporting it to Excel or similar. In fact it sort of seems like FitBit keeps your data on their website where you can look at it but that's all.

    Can anyone who is using or has used a FitBit comment on this?
     
  3. urbantravels

    urbantravels disjecta membra

    Messages:
    1,333
    Likes:
    507
    Los Angeles, CA
    Oh swell, some further digging on the FitBit site has revealed that you CAN download the data in XLS or CSV format - if you buy the $49.99 "Premium membership", good for one year, which includes other extras that I have really no interest in or need for. Rank yourself against other FitBit members - ha, that'd be pitiful. Or, I could use the "Trainer" feature to create my very own GET program. Yeah, that'll happen.

    I'd settle for being able to "Print screen" if all else fails...as long as the output is clearly legible.

    *** ETA: I forgot to mention that in my searches, I found there is a new activity tracker on the market in the form of a (big, clunky) "sports watch" that also incorporates heart rate monitoring. For obvious reasons, it would be great to have these two functions on the same device. But it's twice the price of a FitBit ($200), I'm afraid that huge watch would flop around on my scrawny little wrist, and it's obvious from the review that it's a bit bleeding-edge and doesn't have all the kinks worked out yet, so it would be better to wait for a Version 2. I have reasons for not wanting to wait. I also think the same problem with not being able to get your data out may apply.

    http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2416847,00.asp
     
    Sasha likes this.
  4. November Girl

    November Girl Senior Member

    Messages:
    305
    Likes:
    126
    Texas
    I've had my Fitbit Zip a few days now. At first I was thrilled with it. Then I realized that it doesn't record all of my steps. The less vigorous moves often don't show up at all. I've been told that the only Fitbit that does that well is the Flex wristband model, but the Amazon reviews on this aren't so hot. Not sure what I'll do at this point.
     
    Sasha likes this.
  5. November Girl

    November Girl Senior Member

    Messages:
    305
    Likes:
    126
    Texas
    I now have the official word from the support staff at FitBit. The device does not register speeds under 4MPH. Like many of us, I'm sure I walk the slowest when I'm the most tired. Fat lot of good this did me!!
     
    Sasha, Valentijn and ahimsa like this.
  6. Sasha

    Sasha Fine, thank you

    Messages:
    8,375
    Likes:
    7,447
    UK

    That's weird - 4mph is pretty fast walking, even for a healthy person. I'm suprised this measures anything at all for PWME and yet it seems it does (since several PWME are using it).

    I noticed that conventional pedometers don't tend to measure paces within my flat, possibly because it's carpeted and lessens the impact of my steps.
     
  7. November Girl

    November Girl Senior Member

    Messages:
    305
    Likes:
    126
    Texas
    I'm not quite sure what I'll do now. It does register a good deal of my steps. I will look into other brands. I could try to define my energy envelope by the number of steps that actually register...

    Sasha, I thought 4mp was a pretty brisk pace. I doubt that I walk that fast around the house.
     
    Sasha likes this.
  8. Esther12

    Esther12 Senior Member

    Messages:
    5,294
    Likes:
    5,602
    Thanks for the comments people. I wouldn't mind something like this, so that I could graph activity over months and see any changes. Even if misses a lot, it would still probably capture trends okay.

    I might wait and hope technology improves for now though.
     
  9. urbantravels

    urbantravels disjecta membra

    Messages:
    1,333
    Likes:
    507
    Los Angeles, CA
    Mine counts the small, slow steps I make around the house just fine - I've tested by counting several times. There is no way, no how, I *ever* exceed 4 MPH when walking. I know I never get any "vigorous activity" "very active" minutes; is that what they meant when they said over 4 MPH?

    Average walking speed (for a healthy person) is supposed to be 3 MPH, so it would make no sense for it to only record steps if they were 4 MPH or over.
     
    Sasha likes this.
  10. November Girl

    November Girl Senior Member

    Messages:
    305
    Likes:
    126
    Texas
    urbantravels, Did you have to adjust anything online to get these results? I've played with the stride length a bit, and it doesn't seem to make a difference. I haven't tried taking out the battery & replacing it (one suggestion from customer service)
     
  11. Sasha

    Sasha Fine, thank you

    Messages:
    8,375
    Likes:
    7,447
    UK
    I'm swithering about getting one of these and I'm waiting to see what sort of data the Open Medicine Institute's OpenMedNet 'big data' patient data network is going to want. They're launching that in a few months, I think.
     
  12. urbantravels

    urbantravels disjecta membra

    Messages:
    1,333
    Likes:
    507
    Los Angeles, CA
    Hmmmm, I just went back and noticed that November Girl is talking about the Fitbit Zip, not the regular Fitbit (currrent model is the Fitbit One.) Different devices. The Zip as far as I know is only a pedometer. But it still doesn't make sense to me that it wouldn't register speeds below 4 MPH.

    I posted on the Fitbit boards "for a friend" so let's see what the other users have to say.

    http://www.fitbit.com/forums/topic/GN77LDH3X3H8L
     
    Sasha likes this.
  13. November Girl

    November Girl Senior Member

    Messages:
    305
    Likes:
    126
    Texas
    thanks! I'll take a look over there.
     
  14. November Girl

    November Girl Senior Member

    Messages:
    305
    Likes:
    126
    Texas
    It turns out that the 4mph minimum speed was total BS on the part of one representative.

    My unit works fine now. I followed the instruction to remove the battery and then put it back in. Because it wasn't seated quite right, it occasionally didn't connect. I am now very pleased with my FitBit. There are some other good pedometers available for $15, but the recording function is well worth it. I just wish the software wouldn't congratulate me when I overdo! I hope to do a blog post on this soon.
     
    ahimsa, Valentijn, Sea and 1 other person like this.
  15. Keela Too

    Keela Too Senior Member

    Messages:
    212
    Likes:
    427
    N.Ireland
    Hello I use a Fitbit to monitor my activities.... there is a group on Fitbit for CFS/ME sufferers here: http://www.fitbit.com/group/2295JC

    I find it very useful. I take each day's values and enter them into an excel spreadsheet that graphs them for me and adds lines representing rolling averages for 5, 30 and 100 days. The 5 day rolling average is very useful as it helps me see when I'm increasing too quickly during periods when I'm in better form.

    Mine certainly measures slower walking speeds as I don't move fast. However I suspect it doesn't pick up just a couple of steps eg between kettle and fridge. Everything else it seems remarkably accurate.

    It's not too difficult to work out who I am on that group - just look for the little black dog ;). If you want to send me a friend request then please feel free to do so but please mention this post as you do so. (I tend not to accept random friend requests out of the blue without some message ;) )
     
    Sasha likes this.
  16. Sasha

    Sasha Fine, thank you

    Messages:
    8,375
    Likes:
    7,447
    UK

    Thanks, Keela - maybe an odd question, but does it measure for how long you're horizontal? That would be a useful thing for me to know.
     
  17. Keela Too

    Keela Too Senior Member

    Messages:
    212
    Likes:
    427
    N.Ireland
    At night I set the timer and it records sleep times. It notices if I wake too. (Although only if I turn over etc.)

    You could set the timer if you also sleep during the day.

    It gives you times that you are "lightly active" "fairly active" and "very active". I don't get readings in the last 2 categories (or only a few minutes in fairly active....) and I usually have 2 -3 hours in lightly active - which really means it picks up fidgeting when doing things like drinking tea while seated etc, or bumps in the road on a car journey.

    Mine is a Fitbit One.
     
  18. Sasha

    Sasha Fine, thank you

    Messages:
    8,375
    Likes:
    7,447
    UK

    Sorry, I should have made it clear I meant lying down (but not sleeping). I lie down a lot during the day and I'd like to measure that over time to see what's happening. I think it will be a more sensitive measure than steps (for me, anyway)!
     
  19. Keela Too

    Keela Too Senior Member

    Messages:
    212
    Likes:
    427
    N.Ireland
    Start and stop the timer?

    Or just regulate keeping the "lightly active" part low too?

    It can't detect your orientation, but there are ways you could tweak get this detail I think.
     
  20. Sasha

    Sasha Fine, thank you

    Messages:
    8,375
    Likes:
    7,447
    UK

    Thanks - that's useful to know.
     

See more popular forum discussions.

Share This Page