About those 10,000 Steps

How did society decide that somehow 10,000 should be this goal?
Well actually it was part of a Marketing Tool from 1965 for a Japanese device (pedometer) called Manpo-Kei which translates to 10,000 steps meter.

It was determined that more or less 10,000 steps equaled to 4 to 5 miles. Again the thinking was that if everyone really was getting that much walking in per day it was a healthy thing to do.

I noticed over a year ago, that the amount of steps I needed to take to register a mile had changed. Getting different numbers on fitbit and iphone from what they used to be. So I started to research it online. I think at one time, it was 2,000 x5 across the board, but really that is not accurate because of stride length etc. So it was changed to accommodate for gender and height for apps that the info was input on.
I did look it up online based on height, and was close to the number I know get on fitbit. I also actually did the measuring of stride, and length of a distance and multiplied it all out. And again really saw that the difference was very small.
Took me awhile to figure out, but I got my fitbit to accept my stride length so it exactly knows how many steps I take to equal a mile. I found the below link very easy to follow.
Happy Stepping!
I also liked the site for giving an idea of other exercises, and how much in steps they equal to.

www.fitnessforweightloss.com/how-do-i-measure-my-step-length/

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Replies

  • NovusDies
    NovusDies Posts: 8,940 Member
    Nice work!

    Apple Watch does not have a place for stride length that I could find. It learns. There is a method for recalibration:

    https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT204516
  • bmeadows380
    bmeadows380 Posts: 3,098 Member
    edited March 2020
    here's a question:

    I have a pedometer that I've been using for the last couple of weeks to get my step counts in. I went and bought a lifepro fitness tracker (wrist-worn like an fitbit) as it was reasonably priced and was a best seller on Amazon. It came in yesterday. I only got the lifepro because I was looking for something that also was a heart monitor and didn't want to pay out for a fitbit.

    However, the steps from one to the other are way different! At this moment, the pedometer says I had 1398 steps in; the fitness tracker says 2979; that's a 1,581 step difference in just half a day!

    I read up on the step count on the lifepro and it says that it uses a 3D sensor that registers for the swinging of my arms; the pedometer which is Realalt 3DTriSport, says it also uses a 3D sensor and can register being carried in any position, from waist, to shoulder, to lanyard, to pocket. The lifepro says it resets if the step count doesn't reach 40; the realat says it has a 10 step error margin. I thought perhaps the pedometer was off because I was wearing it clipped to the shoulder strap of my bra so I wouldn't lose it and it wouldn't be in my way. I thought that perhaps it wasn't registering correctly and that would be the difference. However, I moved it to my pants waist then walked over to my mom's and back, and still had a 12 step difference with the pedometer being under. However, I just did a test of walking around my house for 115 steps, and both measured within 1 step of each other!

    So I'm not sure which one to trust for step count; is the realalt missing steps or is the lifepro over-counting? The realalt is just a pedometer with a readout, but the lifepro connects via bluetooth to an app on my phone and can feed its information to apple health, which I think can be synced to MFP, right? Any ideas?

    I'm trying to up my movement and was using the step counts for that. I figured if I can get up to 7,500 to 10,000 steps a day before exercise, I could consider myself lightly active, but I need a mostly accurate step counter for that.
  • jjlewey
    jjlewey Posts: 247 Member
    @bmeadows380
    Over the last couple of years I have had 3 different fitbits (alta hr, versa, inspire hr) and used my sons galaxy 2 watch for a couple days. All of them worn on the wrist and registered a similar average step count for my average day.
    I am not sure about a pedometer because I have never had one.
    I have walked the local high school track with my versa and it is close in distance. Less than a tenth of a mile off after 4 laps.
    I know in the fitbit app you can set a specific stride length and that will help distance calculations.
    I dont use it to determine a specific distance or step count. I like the gratification of reaching my goal 12k steps but use it as an indication that I have been active that day more than anything.
  • bmeadows380
    bmeadows380 Posts: 3,098 Member
    @jjlewey The pedometer I have isn't blue tooth, but does have the ability to set stride length and weight to calculate calories and distance, though I don't use either one because I don't trust the calorie burn estimate and I can't see where the distance could be right since my stride isn't exactly the same throughout the day.

    Yesterday, the pedometer was the one that was vastly under on counts. Today, I put the pedometer on my belt, and so far, its now 140 counts higher than the wrist one! Apparently, despite the claims of the pedometer maker that it can be worn anywhere on the body, it seems to work better at the waist.

    The thing that concerns me on the wrist one is what if I"m walking but not swinging my arms? For instance: I had to drop my truck off at the body shop after I hit a deer with it. I had my sister pick me up and I took her to breakfast near my workplace as compensation for her getting up so early. It's about 0.5 mile , so I chose to walk back to the office. I was carrying a drink and a bag. I made sure that I carried both in the opposite hand from the fitness tracker, but that got me to wondering: I often walk down to the grocery store near that restaurant during lunch, pick up a few things, and walk back carrying my purchased items. When I'm carrying grocery bags, I don't swing my arms. If I'm not swinging my arms, would the wrist worn fitness tracker accurately measure my steps?
  • jjlewey
    jjlewey Posts: 247 Member
    @bemeadow380 I walk both of my huskies wearing my fitbit, one leash in each arm. Granted I usually turn on the exercise feature so that it hooks up to my phones GPS so I get a decent distance estimate. The steps accrued when I use gps feature and when not using it are similar for the same walking path. I am not sure how it works exactly but it doesnt seem to matter if your arm is swinging or not in my experience.
  • conniewilkins56
    conniewilkins56 Posts: 3,271 Member
    jjlewey wrote: »
    @bemeadow380 I walk both of my huskies wearing my fitbit, one leash in each arm. Granted I usually turn on the exercise feature so that it hooks up to my phones GPS so I get a decent distance estimate. The steps accrued when I use gps feature and when not using it are similar for the same walking path. I am not sure how it works exactly but it doesnt seem to matter if your arm is swinging or not in my experience.


    Not to change the subject but our dog is a Pitsky....part huskie and part pittbul....she has beautiful blue huskie eyes!
  • psychod787
    psychod787 Posts: 4,088 Member
    I am a bit on the ancestral angle here. Sorry, a little biased because of my mentors. I think 12-14k ,or energy burning equivalent, is more the range we need to shoot for. If we look at hunter gathers, they average about that.
  • speyerj
    speyerj Posts: 1,369 Member
    @bemeadow380 - I get very few FitBit steps when grocery shopping if I am pushing a cart. Sometimes I'll try to push one handed, but generally I accept that I'm not getting "credit". On the other hand, if I am at a performance or sporting event I get extra steps for "clapping". So it's not perfect. Many years ago I had the FitBit One that I could clip to my bra - that was more accurate. But, it's okay. It's not like I'm burning many calories shopping anyway.
  • bmeadows380
    bmeadows380 Posts: 3,098 Member
    @speyerj Yeah, but all that grocery shopping is getting your NEAT up! That counts for something! :smile:
  • NovusDies
    NovusDies Posts: 8,940 Member
    @bemeadow380

    It was pretty clear in the instructions for the apple watch that I would need to leave my watch arm free to swing to get credit. As far as the discrepancies I think you will probably have to treat it like a scale. Pick one to trust and then use it as a gauge for improvement. When your calorie burn gets high enough to increase your rate of loss you will know the average step count you need to try and hit. I would look to see if the watch has the ability to give you an average over a month or so or if you need to do a manual log somewhere.

    I thought the apple watch was too high on my steps but when I compared it to a pedometer and my neighbor compared his to a fitbit both of us found that the AW was conservative/less. I am not sure if it captures all my steps or captures more steps than I actually walk but I do know my average steps and my average calorie burn.
  • NovusDies
    NovusDies Posts: 8,940 Member
    psychod787 wrote: »
    I am a bit on the ancestral angle here. Sorry, a little biased because of my mentors. I think 12-14k ,or energy burning equivalent, is more the range we need to shoot for. If we look at hunter gathers, they average about that.

    @psychod787

    It is hard to imagine that I get more steps than someone needing to hunt for food. I am pretty sedentary while working and my kitchen is not that far of a walk. :grin:
  • bmeadows380
    bmeadows380 Posts: 3,098 Member
    I've been wearing both for the last few days, and they are not as bad as that first day off; though its weird that the pedometer starts out in the morning with more steps registered to it, but by evening, the wrist fitness monitor has the most steps!

    It works with an app on my phone and does keep track of weekly stats; I'll have to check to see about monthly.

    Course the frustrating thing I'm dealing with right now is the stupid water weight that is masking my real weight loss, making it impossible to see just where I stand this week. I was hoping to use tomorrow's reading compared to last thursday to see if I needed to eat more or less of my exercise calories back, but tomorrow is going to end up being a bust since I expect that my weight is going to register as being up instead of down.
  • psychod787
    psychod787 Posts: 4,088 Member
    edited March 2020
    NovusDies wrote: »
    psychod787 wrote: »
    I am a bit on the ancestral angle here. Sorry, a little biased because of my mentors. I think 12-14k ,or energy burning equivalent, is more the range we need to shoot for. If we look at hunter gathers, they average about that.

    @psychod787

    It is hard to imagine that I get more steps than someone needing to hunt for food. I am pretty sedentary while working and my kitchen is not that far of a walk. :grin:

    Well, most of "us" go out of our way to be more active. Most hunter gatherers try to conserve energy. More research is coming out about activity constraining appetite in most people. It really does go beyond the calorie burns. Sun light exposure to help sleep and metabolism. Leptin sensitivity from moving. It's just fascinating.
  • NovusDies
    NovusDies Posts: 8,940 Member
    psychod787 wrote: »
    NovusDies wrote: »
    psychod787 wrote: »
    I am a bit on the ancestral angle here. Sorry, a little biased because of my mentors. I think 12-14k ,or energy burning equivalent, is more the range we need to shoot for. If we look at hunter gathers, they average about that.

    @psychod787

    It is hard to imagine that I get more steps than someone needing to hunt for food. I am pretty sedentary while working and my kitchen is not that far of a walk. :grin:

    Well, most of "us" go out of our way to be more active. Most hunter gatherers try to conserve energy. More research is coming out about activity constraining appetite in most people. It really does go beyond the calorie burns. Sun light exposure to help sleep and metabolism. Leptin sensitivity from moving. It's just fascinating.

    @psychod787

    Nope. You got it all wrong. They walked less because they didn't have indoor dogs that refused to "go" on their scheduled times and needed many extra trips outside and around. I have logged 3000-3500 steps on that project alone today and I still haven't taken him for his main walk.
  • conniewilkins56
    conniewilkins56 Posts: 3,271 Member
    I recently got a Versa Fitbit and I am getting 5000 steps a day...this is amazing for me as I was getting about 2500 at the most...am I still sedentary or can I go up to moderately active?....I have not been eating any of my exercise calories back for the last week and I raised my goal to 2 lbs a week from 1.5.... it has been a pretty hungry week but I wanted to shake my weight up to lose a little more...I did lose 2 lbs this week but not sure if it was worth giving up my extra snacks...it did prove to me that I can function just fine out of my comfort zone...
  • NovusDies
    NovusDies Posts: 8,940 Member
    I recently got a Versa Fitbit and I am getting 5000 steps a day...this is amazing for me as I was getting about 2500 at the most...am I still sedentary or can I go up to moderately active?....I have not been eating any of my exercise calories back for the last week and I raised my goal to 2 lbs a week from 1.5.... it has been a pretty hungry week but I wanted to shake my weight up to lose a little more...I did lose 2 lbs this week but not sure if it was worth giving up my extra snacks...it did prove to me that I can function just fine out of my comfort zone...

    If you changed to 2 pounds per week and you are not eating your exercise calories your rate of loss should start showing in excess of 2 pounds per week. If you have been hungry this week and missing your snacks you will need to address it pretty fast because you it is unlikely you are on a sustainable course at the moment. Remember that the ease of losing the next pound is more important than losing the next pound. I am very anti-shaking up things that have been working but I definitely understand the need to experiment.

    If you have your fitbit synced with MFP you should not have to do anything with your activity level. Just eat back your exercise calories. I do not know anything about the fitbit but @PAV8888 does and if he sees this he could advise you on your exercise calories better than I can
  • bmeadows380
    bmeadows380 Posts: 3,098 Member
    well, I found out tonight that if I set my fitness tracker to fitness instead of walking or treadmill, it will register that I'm working out on the elliptical, but it won't measure the steps I'm taking while on it, which is a little frustrating since I was shooting to get my 5,000 steps in, and if you count that 40 minutes on the elliptical, I got over that, but it doesn't register as such on my tracker. I put my old pedometer on and know that I got 3,600 steps in during that workout, but there isn't a way to manually enter that data in the app for the tracker.
  • PAV8888
    PAV8888 Posts: 10,714 Member
    I haven't been reading the thread but I've been summoned!

    My quick answer is that I would definitely not be messing with good enough and trying to make it even better especially if I'm finding that it's making it harder.

    If Fitbit and mfp are integrated, and with negative calories enabled, at midnight at the end of the day MFP will be showing an adjustment such that your Fitbit TDEE will be your final number, regardless of activity level chosen.

    5000 steps is usually a small positive adjustment as compared to sedentary. You usually start getting such at about 3500 steps (for most people).

    Beyond that it does depend on how closely your general logging has been matching to your weight trend
  • bmeadows380
    bmeadows380 Posts: 3,098 Member
    I think you were actually called forth to answer a question for Connie :wink:

    I know to most folks 5,000 steps seems to be a really tiny number, but I'm coming from a completely sedentary lifestyle where I was getting less than 3,000 in a day, unless I was shopping, so 5,000 is actually double what I was getting before, and I'm adding those extra steps in with 30 minutes at least of some kind of intentional exercise, either on the elliptical, walking outside, or in that class I'm taking, so I figure that's got to have some benefit, right?

    I realize, though, that its not making much of a difference calorie-wise, which is why I've been pretty stingy in adding back in the activity, either only counting 1/4 of it or not at all. Unfortunately, I can't tell what my trend has been because my body is being vindictive or just plain hard to get along with and hasn't been showing me the legitimate loss. I might get the rest of this excess non-fat weight out of me eventually.......*sigh*

    But anyway, I'm erring on the side of caution and not wanting to count exercise calories until I can establish the loss trend, and I guess that will take at least a month before I get any idea how much I need to adjust.
  • maureenkhilde
    maureenkhilde Posts: 850 Member
    well, I found out tonight that if I set my fitness tracker to fitness instead of walking or treadmill, it will register that I'm working out on the elliptical, but it won't measure the steps I'm taking while on it, which is a little frustrating since I was shooting to get my 5,000 steps in, and if you count that 40 minutes on the elliptical, I got over that, but it doesn't register as such on my tracker. I put my old pedometer on and know that I got 3,600 steps in during that workout, but there isn't a way to manually enter that data in the app for the tracker.

    I am trying to remember who posted about this on main threads. Someone with thousands of posts. Not Pav8888 who is very knowledgeable, but may have been involved on the post. I think it was someone who does a lot of running, and mentioned info was in a running magazine of some type.
    The discussion was around steps counted on treadmill, elliptical and or cycling on an indoor bike and how the counts seem way off, and really do not count correctly.
    I remember part of answer was along the lines of taking ones weight X a set number(more on this below) and taking that answer X how many minutes you did the exercise.
    Set number
    .30 average walk around 2.5 mph
    .32 walking 3.0 sustained pace mph
    .33 I use this one for indoor cycling
    .34 This I think is for jogging and there was a mph hour for it, but I do not remember it
    .36 Running

    It did list elliptical but I do not remember I think it was .32 or .33

    That it would give an estimated number of steps. I think I have it bookmarked somewhere. I look for it tonight.