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Apple Watch question

ChristismylifeChristismylife Posts: 86Member Member Posts: 86Member Member
If you have an Apple Watch, do you import exercise recorded via health app into MyFitnessPal AND import steps into MyFitnessPal? I have both set, so I am getting exercise calories from exercise recorded (eg. indoor or outdoor walk) plus a positive or negative step adjustment. Should I just have the exercise and not the steps?

Replies

  • stv1520stv1520 Posts: 186Member, Premium Member Posts: 186Member, Premium Member
    I subtract the step calories from my Watch workouts for MFP.
  • heybalesheybales Posts: 17,137Member Member Posts: 17,137Member Member
    If you have an Apple Watch, do you import exercise recorded via health app into MyFitnessPal AND import steps into MyFitnessPal? I have both set, so I am getting exercise calories from exercise recorded (eg. indoor or outdoor walk) plus a positive or negative step adjustment. Should I just have the exercise and not the steps?

    Did you actually do the process starting on MFP to link to Apple health?

    Or in the MFP app you just selected Apple Watch as step source?

    Are you manually entering the workouts on MFP as Apple reports what they burned?
    Or you mean they are syncing from Apple to MFP because you are linked?


    Just FYI - steps is merely a figure, like glasses of water drank.
    The adjustment is based on calories not steps. If anything it's based on distance you might say those steps go, but that can vary based on stride length - so it's distance calculated to calories burned.

    But questions above very important because it makes huge difference.
  • amy19355amy19355 Posts: 722Member, Premium Member Posts: 722Member, Premium Member
    I have much preferred the Apple Watch over the Fitbit, and switched to the Activity App for tracking nearly all my exercise.
    Not being able to sync the Apple Watch to MFP was disappointing, but not earth shattering.

    MFP is my goto for logging food and weight. The community here was a huge help in my first weeks and months with getting on the calories in/calories out mentality.

    Love the Dick Tracy aspect of the Apple Watch!

  • heybalesheybales Posts: 17,137Member Member Posts: 17,137Member Member
    amy19355 wrote: »
    I have much preferred the Apple Watch over the Fitbit, and switched to the Activity App for tracking nearly all my exercise.
    Not being able to sync the Apple Watch to MFP was disappointing, but not earth shattering.

    MFP is my goto for logging food and weight. The community here was a huge help in my first weeks and months with getting on the calories in/calories out mentality.

    Love the Dick Tracy aspect of the Apple Watch!

    You can sync MFP to the Pacer app (a created account actually).
    And then in Pacer account sync to Apple Health account.

    Now the data comes over correctly - daily burn, workouts.

    Haven't actually heard if food totals go back across successfully, but as you mentioned Food goals on MFP, and that just requires knowing about daily burn.

    Movement goals on Apple though don't require knowing eating totals.
  • ChristismylifeChristismylife Posts: 86Member Member Posts: 86Member Member
    I have MyFitnessPal pulling steps from my Apple Watch (under steps setting) plus under connected apps, I selected the Health app from my iPhone. So my Apple Watch is pushing information to the health app on my phone, and MyFitnessPal is pulling that data from my health app. Each day whenever I exercise and track it via my watch (using the exercise app it came with), those exercises get imported automatically into MyFitnessPal. I am also seeing a step/calories adjustment since my steps are being counted. I am hoping that what’s happening is that it’s giving me a smaller adjustment for additional calories based on the health app knowing that part of those steps were achieved through the recorded exercises. Hopefully it isn’t giving me double the calories for those steps plus exercise recorded. If that makes sense....
  • heybalesheybales Posts: 17,137Member Member Posts: 17,137Member Member
    I have MyFitnessPal pulling steps from my Apple Watch (under steps setting) plus under connected apps, I selected the Health app from my iPhone. So my Apple Watch is pushing information to the health app on my phone, and MyFitnessPal is pulling that data from my health app. Each day whenever I exercise and track it via my watch (using the exercise app it came with), those exercises get imported automatically into MyFitnessPal. I am also seeing a step/calories adjustment since my steps are being counted. I am hoping that what’s happening is that it’s giving me a smaller adjustment for additional calories based on the health app knowing that part of those steps were achieved through the recorded exercises. Hopefully it isn’t giving me double the calories for those steps plus exercise recorded. If that makes sense....

    If you did connected apps, then MFP is not getting steps directly from the watch, that setting says to use your connected accounts.

    That's where the steps and workouts come from - Apple Health.

    Sadly Apple is not sending any other data correctly - MFP is expecting from any tracker a figure for Total Daily burned calories and time stamp (TDEE).
    From that MFP is correcting itself to match what your device has said you have burned, and what MFP thinks you'll burn for rest of the day based on selected activity level.

    But Apple sends a sedentary burn figure, not TDEE.
    It doesn't send any extra activity calories above sedentary.

    So when MFP removes the known workout calories from that total so as not to double count - they actually aren't even there.
    Opposite of double-counting - workouts remove calories that should count.
    And you aren't even getting credit for non-workout calories above sedentary.

    The more active you are, and the more workouts you do - the worse the effect of getting adjustments that go the wrong direction.

    Read the post right above yours for the solution.
  • ChristismylifeChristismylife Posts: 86Member Member Posts: 86Member Member
    Thank you! This makes me feel better. It seems like sometimes when I am doing more exercise that it’s giving me less calories back. I will look up the Pacer app.
  • heybalesheybales Posts: 17,137Member Member Posts: 17,137Member Member
    Thank you! This makes me feel better. It seems like sometimes when I am doing more exercise that it’s giving me less calories back. I will look up the Pacer app.

    Now the effect you mention can happen in life.

    Sometimes a hard workout makes us less active than we would have been for rest the day, perhaps less than sedentary.
    So a workout could add 400, but my being less active rest of the day we lose 50-100.

    But because of the wrong figures it's usually much worse than that.

    Apple reported sedentary say 2000 - MFP selected sedentary 2000 - known workout 400 = neg 400 adjustment.

    base eating goal say 1500 + workout 400 - adjustment 400 = 1500 eating goal.

    Not a bit of credit for the workout. And if you were more active than sedentary by say 200 calories - totally unknown.
  • ChristismylifeChristismylife Posts: 86Member Member Posts: 86Member Member
    heybales wrote: »
    Thank you! This makes me feel better. It seems like sometimes when I am doing more exercise that it’s giving me less calories back. I will look up the Pacer app.

    Now the effect you mention can happen in life.

    Sometimes a hard workout makes us less active than we would have been for rest the day, perhaps less than sedentary.
    So a workout could add 400, but my being less active rest of the day we lose 50-100.

    But because of the wrong figures it's usually much worse than that.

    Apple reported sedentary say 2000 - MFP selected sedentary 2000 - known workout 400 = neg 400 adjustment.

    base eating goal say 1500 + workout 400 - adjustment 400 = 1500 eating goal.

    Not a bit of credit for the workout. And if you were more active than sedentary by say 200 calories - totally unknown.

    @heybales I have been using the Pacer app per your suggestion to import/translate my days’ activities and calories into MyFitnessPal. It’s mostly seeming to work well. One issue I have seen though is that when I sync my activity the next day instead of the day it was done, the calories seem way off. For example, yesterday I had only synced early in the day, so I went to sync my Pacer app this morning to see what calories it gave me yesterday. I have MyFitnessPal set to sedentary, and almost every day I am seeing it give me calories back. Yesterday it was giving me over 200 back with maybe 2,000 steps that had been synced early in the day. But when I synced it this morning, it gave me -1 calorie for the day yesterday. I had over 13,000 steps which included about a 30 minute HIIT workout recorded. I don’t understand why the calories are so off. This really only seems to happen when I sync the next day instead of doing it at the end of the day. Any ideas what the issue may be?
  • ChristismylifeChristismylife Posts: 86Member Member Posts: 86Member Member
    I just checked the actual Pacer app and it shows I had over 900 active calories burned yesterday. I guess it’s just some glitch if I don’t sync at the end of the day.
  • auburngirl06auburngirl06 Posts: 144Member Member Posts: 144Member Member
    You shouldn’t have to be manually syncing anything. I have been user pacer per @heybales for maybe 4-5 months now. Every now and then, like once every 3 days, I’ll have to go into pacer and select sync now to get MFP to read the current data. I find that if I leave MFP app open on my phone and pull it up after a workout that that is when it won’t sync. Maybe you should try to unsync everything and start over.
  • heybalesheybales Posts: 17,137Member Member Posts: 17,137Member Member
    So it sounds like the Pacer app did get more recent info from Apple Health, but it didn't send it on to MFP?

    I agree the manual shouldn't be needed - unless you have that set just to conserve battery on phone, in which case that app setting is merely telling the accounts what to do, at least in MFP's case.
    The app isn't doing the actual syncing, you could turn it off and view totally through web page and syncing would be on auto.

    Pacer it's been awhile since I used it and don't recall right now - I thought they made a change some years ago but can't recall which direction. To save money I could see dropping a server that handles the accounts and activity, and making the app do it all. In which case if it freezes for some reason, no sync. Perhaps view the stats on it near the end of the day, see if they cause an update on MFP soon afterwards.
  • PAV8888PAV8888 Posts: 6,024Member Member Posts: 6,024Member Member
    If you update MFP with data early on in the day and not closer to midnight, when the update eventually happens you are likely to observe large changes.

    MFP, at any point of time, takes the external input and then adds to it the remainder of your day as you've selected it (sedentary, lightly active, active, very active)

    Even sedentary assumes a base level of movement which your device might not observe if you spend an evening on the couch watching tv.

    Generally speaking the closer to midnight you synchronize an external tracker with MFP, the less likely it will be for your numbers to change the next day.
  • MySlimGoalsMySlimGoals Posts: 523Member, Premium Member Posts: 523Member, Premium Member
    I have no idea what my Apple watch is doing. It counts my steps and they somehow end up on MFP. I think it is all correct and the exercise I log on my apple watch using the app that has the green man running icon ends up on MFP too under the food diary with a pink heart beside it. But I haven't been eating my exercise calories so it doesn't really matter (to me) whether it is correct or not as long as I do some exercise every day. Oh and if I was going to do a great deal of exercise I would eat back some of my calories.. but I would probably still be quite cautious if that makes sense.
  • bearly63bearly63 Posts: 94Member, Premium Member Posts: 94Member, Premium Member
    @heybales
    just got a new apple watch and trying to research the best way to set up so I found this thread. I plan on doing what I am currently doing and logging my workouts only (not daily steps). I usually just add back a portion of my workout burn to get my calorie total for the day. Seems to be working but its really just a guess. So if I do what you recommended, I should set up the Pacer app (there are a couple on the apple app store - is it the one with running guy? Then sync MFP to Pacer and the Pacer to the Health app?

    thank you
  • heybalesheybales Posts: 17,137Member Member Posts: 17,137Member Member
    bearly63 wrote: »
    @heybales
    just got a new apple watch and trying to research the best way to set up so I found this thread. I plan on doing what I am currently doing and logging my workouts only (not daily steps). I usually just add back a portion of my workout burn to get my calorie total for the day. Seems to be working but its really just a guess. So if I do what you recommended, I should set up the Pacer app (there are a couple on the apple app store - is it the one with running guy? Then sync MFP to Pacer and the Pacer to the Health app?

    thank you

    Uh, options now.
    I'd start with the link in the MFP account under Apps to sync.
    https://www.myfitnesspal.com/apps/show/280

    Which gets to this specific app - though they all may work.
    https://apps.apple.com/us/app/pacer-pedometer-plus-weight/id600446812

    But indeed, Pacer is the go between.
    It send MFP what's expected, and can reach into the Apple Health account to get figures from.


  • bearly63bearly63 Posts: 94Member, Premium Member Posts: 94Member, Premium Member
    @heybales
    Thanks so much....appreciate your help!
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