At Fitbit, we love to hear feedback from customers. Today we thought we’d pass on a particularly inspiring story from Chris, a businessman who found his busy lifestyle was taking a toll on his health and fitness. The Fitbit helped him so much, he even went out and bought a Fitbit Ultra! “I just saw the new ‘Floors Climbed’ feature in Fitbit Ultra and had to get it! A key part of my getting back in shape earlier this year was to start by taking the stairs.”
Here’s his story:
“Last December, my health and fitness reached an all-time low. Four years ago, I moved to start FrontPoint Security. The business is doing fantastic, but it has been pretty ‘all consuming’ for the last four years. By December of last year, I had reached an all-time weight high, body fat high, and my energy level was noticeably the worst it had ever been.”
Chris decided he needed a change, and picked the Fitbit Tracker to help him on his path to get back in shape. He paid close attention to his Dashboard, invested in Fitbit’s Premium Subscription, and made it a point to reach his daily goals. He also made a long-term goal to climb Mt. Shasta by the summer of 2012, something he’d done ten years earlier with his dad.
“I ended up making so much progress that I climbed Mt. Shasta in July 2011 about a year ahead of my plan. My weight had dropped almost 40 lbs., and my body fat dropped to around 10%. At the same time, my blood pressure got much better and I was able to stop taking my blood pressure medication. And, my resting heart rate dropped from around 67 to just 41, where it is today.”
He made so much progress, in fact, that he’s since climbed Mt. Rainier as well – an even harder mountain that had been a goal ten years ago!
“I can easily say now that I’ve never felt better or been in better shape.”
Chris shows us that with a little motivation and information, it’s never too late to reach our goals. Share your inspirational stories with us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Our goal at Fitbit has always been to provide you with the most useful tools to meet and manage a healthy lifestyle, and it is with this vision in mind that we’ve released the new Fitbit Ultra.
The Fitbit Ultra comes with many new features, as well as everything that had already been included with the Fitbit Classic. It now contains an altimeter that shows how many floors you’ve climbed each day. Stair climbing is one of the most efficient exercises that can be done, burning around four times as many calories as simply walking. With new online features comparing your floors climbed to different landmarks, we hope you find the motivation to take the stairs. Other new features offer encouraging messages when you pick up your Fitbit Tracker, allow you to add more personal touches to your Fitbit Ultra, and provide you with a clock and stopwatch to keep track of your exercises with even more information.
At the end of the day, it’s not about being filled with fancy gadgets just because they’re new. It’s about providing you with easy to use, fun, effective tools to directly fit your needs and provide you with motivation to keep going — whether you’re taking a walk rather than driving, taking the stairs rather than the elevator, or just getting out and moving. It’s about reaching your goals in the most efficient and fun way possible. And it’s about becoming as healthy as you want to be.
Here’s to happy stepping, and climbing!
Fitbit is happy to announce a new, flexible way to set and maintain weight goals! Here at Fitbit, our mission is to provide you with tools that encourage a healthy lifestyle. With Food Goal, you’re given a suggested calorie “goal zone” where you’re shown a range of calories you can eat throughout the day to still meet your weight goals.
Something you might not have seen before is the way your Fitbit Food Goal dynamically adjusts itself based on your day’s activities. Your calorie count goal for the day will go up as you exercise, and now you can actually see how exercising and your diet go together to help you meet your weight goals. Going for a walk during your morning break could now mean an extra cookie at the end of the day, or a morning run could mean getting to splurge a little for dinner.
Food Goal offers four different intensities as well: Easier, Medium, Kinda Hard, and Harder. Each intensity varies in how many pounds you might expect to lose per week to meet your goal by a certain date. So whether you’d like to lose two pounds a week, or see when you might realistically be able to meet your weight goal, you can pick the intensity that works best for you.
You can start using Food Goal today by logging in to your Fitbit account and going to your “Log” tab. Once you’ve started, find some encouragement on our Facebook page or email us your success stories at email@example.com.
Have you ever forced yourself to go to the gym just because you’d already
made plans to meet up with a friend there? How about pushing yourself to
make sure you get those last thousand steps in because you know your
friend will be asking how many you did?
The value of friends in supporting your goals and celebrating your
achievements is undeniable. And with everyone’s busy schedules it’s not
always easy to meet up daily, or even weekly, to get this support. With
the right online tools you can build a great friend support network
online. That’s why we’ve just made it easier to find and invite friends to
Fitbit now connects with Facebook so that you can find all of your
Facebook friends that use Fitbit. You may be surprised how many of your
friends use Fitbit. Never fear if you have some friends that aren’t on
Facebook: you can import your address book and send them an email
invitation instead. To start finding out which of your friends are using
Fitbit, log on to your account at Fitbit.com, go to
your “Home” tab, and look under “My Stats” on the left. You’ll find a link
to start finding and inviting friends.
Once you’re connected with your friends, it’s easy to see one another’s
stats through the competitive leaderboard, or view one another’s profiles.
It’s important to celebrate fitness milestones with friends, but, hey, a
little healthy competition isn’t bad as well. So go on, get over to your
Fitbit Dashboard and start inviting with Friend Finder. When you do, let
us know how you and your friends keep each other motivated to stay fit!
Find us on Facebook or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
Ever hit your step goal and let loose a fist pump?
We’re big believers in giving credit where it’s due, so we’ve cooked up a way to help celebrate your milestones with you. Cue the trumpets, Fitbit now has badges! You’ll now receive badges for hitting daily milestones. Get your first badge for hitting 5,000 steps.
Let’s not forget the name of the game is total cumulative steps––it’s all about how much you’ve done over time. You’ll also earn badges for racking up major mileage with your trusty tracker.
Badges will appear on your Fitbit.com dashboard once you’ve hit certain targets. You can share them with friends on Fitbit.com as well as by posting them through your Facebook or Four Square account.
Badges are pretty cool. One of the biggest achievement we have is when you have achieved 3,000 miles which is nothing short of amazing. It’s approximately the distance of San Francisco to New York! If you’ve received the 3,000 miles badge, please let us know on Facebook or Twitter or email us at email@example.com. We’d love to hear how you did it and salute you — virtual fist bump!
At Fitbit we like to ask our users for feedback. Very often we like to share our customers experiences with the community because they are so inspirational and insightful. Here’s a great one from Tyler, hailing from Prince George:
“I was shocked, absolutely shocked. When I saw that I was just hitting 3,000 steps a day, it was a wake-up call. I knew the heart healthy number was 10,000, and here I was, only doing a third.”
Tyler played college basketball and always prided himself for being an athlete. But life got a little busy. He became a new dad, with an active little girl. He spends long days at the job. Plus, he was having knee problems. He purchased the Fitbit Tracker to help him get him back on his fitness plan. But reality hit when Tyler got his Fitbit Tracker and saw after the first day what those bright little numbers were saying. 3,000 steps. Ouch. “There is no way to argue with the numbers. I wasn’t as active as I thought I was.”
After using the Fitbit Tracker for 6 months and aiming for 10,000 steps a day, Tyler has lost 25 lbs. Now he runs up and down the stairs chasing his little girl with ease and without any knee pain. “Fitbit gave me a good wake-up call. Now all my friends and family have one and we all compare and compete with each other. Fitbit Trackers have definitely helped our family get more fit and heart-happy.”
Tyler hit on something that we often forget — that half of the fitness battle is just being able to objectively and easily assess how active you are on a daily basis. If you know someone like Tyler, please forward this inspirational story. We also would love to hear your inspirational stories –firstname.lastname@example.org
The New York Times recently highlighted a study titled “Trends over 5 Decades in US Occupation-Related Physical Activity and Their Associations with Obesity”; the study concludes that there is a correlation in the decrease in workplace activity with the increase in obesity in America. I don’t think this conclusion is much of a surprise for many of us. I mean, how many times have we re-engineered our work activities to be more streamlined, more efficient since moving around at work doesn’t seem all that fun.
Proof exists all around us; all we have to do is look around at our office mates. I won’t name names but I have a few friends who are complete office turtles: IMing or emailing correspondences to the desk next-door, housing mini water coolers on their desks, and depending on the sandwich cart to deliver lunch. And my favorite proof point, I have a friend who gets his hair cut AT his desk. He doesn’t even have to leave his chair, because the company offers a service in which you can schedule a haircut at your desk. The study also concludes that our national obsession with improving our diet isn’t going to solve obesity; we need to also consider our activity levels at work.
When placed in this framework, it seems to make a lot of sense why squeezing in a few gym workouts isn’t going to solve the obesity program. 30 minutes on a treadmill two to three times a week, to offset the 40+ hours of sitting at our desks? I don’t think so. And I doubt anyone would ask us to revert to a work lifestyle of breaking stones and hauling timber. The researchers conclude that what we should instead do is get more active throughout the day.
Good point, but I think we can take this recommendation a step further. We need to get more active together and support each other by building activity into our social interactions at work. We do it with food and our diet. We talk about recipes, diets, and just how many calories are glazed onto that Krispy Kreme donut (180, btw). We encourage each other to pick healthy restaurants for lunch. But when our minds turn to being more active at work, we automatically think of solitary activities. I admit it — I’ll walk by myself between meetings. I’ll walk outside for a quick break at lunch. But, why can’t we build up the social aspect of walking more at work?
There’s a group here at Fitbit who pledge to walk up the 14 flights of stairs to our office together after lunch every day. Now that’s support and it’s social! (And they make it productive — as they do discuss work). Here’s my question: what can we all do to help our work friends move more throughout the day? Get your thinking cap on and step count up — I’d love to hear your suggestions about what the American work force should do.
We take the privacy of all Fitbit users very seriously. To address some recent concerns about logged activities of Fitbit users showing up in search engine results, we have taken several immediate steps.
Some quick background:
- As you know, Fitbit users can decide voluntarily to log their physical activities. You must do this manually and this information is not collected automatically.
- When setting up their profiles, users have had the option to make their profile activity records private, though the default setting has been to make this information public.
As of Sunday, we have taken the following steps to protect our users’ privacy:
- All activity records on Fitbit.com were hidden from view from both other users and search engines, no matter what the user’s current privacy setting. We have also updated our default settings for new users for activity sharing to “private.”
- We submitted requests to Google and Yahoo/Bing to remove any indexed user profile pages from their search engines. As a result, user profile pages and their activity records have already disappeared from Google and should disappear within several days at other search engines. Once removed, previously indexed activity records should not be accessible to the public at all from that search engine.
- For now, we have removed other personally identifiable information from users’ Fitbit profile pages regardless of privacy settings.
We are dedicated to making this the best fitness platform possible with users in full control of their data. For many people, sharing information is an important motivator for them to achieve their fitness goals. We will be in touch with our users about new choices they will have when they want to share information.
CEO, Co-Founder, Fitbit
Hi there! I’m Christine, and I’ve been working on the product team at Fitbit for the past few months. I’ve been working on enhancements to the website, including improving logging and social features.
Since Fitbit launched, we’ve received many feature suggestions (in addition to building a giant list of our own ideas!). The requests for activity based features generally fall into 2 types – integrating with 3rd party apps (like RunKeeper) and enhancements to our logging tools.
I’ll focus on the second category, where we’ve launched several new improvements (and we’ll post more about our 3rd party integrations on this blog, soon.)
Before we get into the details of what’s new, it might be worth explaining why a person with a Fitbit would want to manually log an activity (since the tracker was made for that!). Here are some common use cases.
- Forgetting to wear the tracker
- Doing an activity that is not tracked well (like cycling or swimming)
- Wearing a heart rate monitor or using another tracking tool while wearing a fitbit
We’ve observed that these use cases are frequent, and being able to support them via manual activity logging helps our customers get a more accurate picture of their overall fitness. Now, here are a few of those enhancements:
- Popular workouts added. If you log manual activities, you can now choose from a variety of yoga styles as well as pilates, elliptical, treadmill, bootcamp, spinning, kickboxing and several Wii and Wii Fit games
- Activity search. You can search for activities ( in addition to browsing) which makes finding and logging your workouts faster than before.
- Custom Activities. You can create and log favorite workouts that are not in activity search. This is great for new workouts and ones that vary based on intensity and routine (such as P90X). Find this in the search results box (pictured above) and in the favorites area
- Editing calorie estimates. When you enter a manual activity we estimate the calorie burn, but now you can enter your own – particularly useful for those of you that workout with Heart Rate Monitors (pictured right).
- Tracker Activity record labels (pictured right). When you add records from your tracker you can now give them names and notes. Tip: you can add these records either by using the start/stop button or if you forget to use the button during a workout - by adding one from the activity log page ( We think this is a handy but hidden feature)
If you have a suggestion or request for Fitbit’s product roadmap, please come post them in our forums.
Have you ever wanted to get your hands on your Fitbit raw data? Create your own fancy charts in Excel? Keep a copy on your hard drive, just for safe keeping? Or maybe print out your sleep numbers and hang them on the fridge?
Well, we just added Data Export to Fitbit Premium. With Data Export you can download Body, Food, Activity and Sleep Data. All the information you download is daily summary data (ie. total steps for a day, not steps per minute or hour.)
Here is what you get!
- Body Data includes your Daily Weight, BMI and Fat.
- Food Data includes your Daily Calorie Count.
- Activity Data includes Calories Burned, Steps, Distance, Minutes Sedentary, Minutes Lightly Active, Minutes Fairly Active, Minutes Very Active, Activity Calories and Active Score.
- Sleep Data includes Minutes asleep, Minutes Awake, Number of Awakenings and Time in Bed.