You’ve heard about the deep web—the parts of the internet not easily accessible—but how about deep Fitbit? Think about it as the deep web’s way less secretive and way more motivational cousin—functions and features that live within the Fitbit ecosystem just waiting to help you reach your health goals. The catch? You have to turn them on.
Take your activity tracking to the next level by learning more about these optional Fitbit offerings.
Opt Into These 7+ Fitbit Features
Goal Setting. Before you can achieve a goal, you have to set one—and you can, for nearly every major metric on your Fitbit dashboard, depending on your tracker. From your dashboard, tap or click the Account icon and then scroll down to “Goals.” Under “Activity” you can set goals around steps, distance, calories burned, active minutes, floors climbed, and hourly activity achieved. “Exercise” will let you choose how many days a week you want to aim to log a workout. “Nutrition & Body” goals include water intake, calories logged, weight, and body fat percentage. Lastly, “Sleep” is where you can set a time asleep goal, a sleep schedule, a bedtime reminder (so you know when to start winding down), and turn on Sleep Insights.
Goal Milestones. If you’re the type of person who responds well to incremental motivation, sign up to receive two types of milestone notifications on your phone—one for steps and one for exercise. The step milestone alert will notify you when you hit 75 percent, 100 percent, or 125 percent of your daily step goal. Exercise milestones are pushed out as you progress towards, hit, or exceed your weekly exercise goal. To opt into these notifications, sign into your account at Fitbit.com, click the gear icon in the top right and then select “Setting” from the dropdown menu. Choose “Notifications” on the left-hand navigation bar and then click the mobile box across from “Step Goal Milestones” and “Exercise Goal Milestones.”
Weekly Summaries. While you’re in your notification settings, sign up for a few more things. The first is a weekly summary email that details the prior week’s totals, daily averages, best performance, as well as how you stacked up compared to your friends. It will help keep your competitive juices flowing as well as give you a good benchmark from which to adjust your daily and weekly goals.
Low-Battery Reminders. This is another great feature to turn on from your Fitbit.com settings. You can sign up to receive a push notification on your mobile device or an email (or both!) when your tracker’s battery is low. Research shows that forgetting to charge one’s tracker is one of the top reasons people lapse in activity tracking.
Newsletters. One of the best ways to stay up to date on new products from Fitbit, including software updates that add fun and healthy new features to your particular tracker, is to sign up for email newsletters from your Fitbit.com account. Under settings, go to “Notifications” and then check the email box for “Product Updates.” This will also loop you into a monthly content newsletter that delivers health and fitness articles, filled with helpful tips and advice, straight to your inbox.
Reminders to Move. If you followed the goal-setting directions above, then you elected which hours of the day you want to commit to taking at least 250 steps. This hourly activity goal ties into Reminders to Move, an alert you can receive on your tracker at ten to the hour if you haven’t fulfilled your step requirement. To turn on Reminders to Move, tap the Hourly Activity tile on your app dashboard and then the gear icon in the top right corner. Slide the circle over until the background is green. Your start and end times should match what you set as your goal, but here you can also confirm which days of the week you want to use Reminders to Move.
Groups. Within Fitbit Community there are nearly 40 topic- and location-specific Groups relating to health and fitness for you to explore. These micro-communities are a great way to find like-minded people with whom to connect, ask questions, and share inspiration and updates, like exercise summaries, badges, trophies, and selfies. Tap on “Community” in the navigation bar at the bottom of your Fitbit app and then groups in the slider at the top. If you’re worried about how much information you’ll be sharing, adjust your privacy settings before joining any groups. And remember, like any of these deep Fitbit features, you can opt out at any time.
This article is not intended to substitute for informed medical advice. You should not use this information to diagnose or treat a health problem or condition. Always check with your doctor before changing your diet, altering your sleep habits, taking supplements, or starting a new fitness routine.