Trouble using exercise diary

plg999
plg999 Posts: 10 Member
What am I missing about the exercise diary? With the food database, pretty much everything I search for is there, however, the opposite seems true with exercise. I really struggle to find anything even though I know what I did is common. Example: I did a whole arm routine this morning. I don't want to enter each thing I did individually, and I couldn't find anything resembling a 30 minute strength workout.

How do people input workouts?

Replies

  • Chef_Barbell
    Chef_Barbell Posts: 6,647 Member
    You have to log strength training in the cardio section.
  • zekikat
    zekikat Posts: 18 Member
    I have the same problem. Very common exercises don't appear in the database, and there aren't easy ways to enter e.g. arm workouts, abs workouts, etc. It's completely impractical to enter, say, 10+ individual exercises performed over the course of an hour. I also find calorie burn estimates to be somewhat arbitrary. It doesn't seem to me that MFP is even adjusting calorie burn estimates based on my current weight.
  • heybales
    heybales Posts: 18,837 Member
    zekikat wrote: »
    I have the same problem. Very common exercises don't appear in the database, and there aren't easy ways to enter e.g. arm workouts, abs workouts, etc. It's completely impractical to enter, say, 10+ individual exercises performed over the course of an hour. I also find calorie burn estimates to be somewhat arbitrary. It doesn't seem to me that MFP is even adjusting calorie burn estimates based on my current weight.

    Did you read the post right above yours or just jump to the end to post?
    Solution given.
    Add calisthenics to the list if that's what it is.
    The difference in calorie burn trying to be specific is either untestable or inconsequential, especially compared to upwards of 20% allowed error in food labels.

    And for entries you use, weight is a factor. Even when it shouldn't be (swimming or inside bike).

  • sijomial
    sijomial Posts: 19,859 Member
    plg999 wrote: »
    I couldn't find anything resembling a 30 minute strength workout.

    Here you go!
    tmia96v0bv1q.png

    The Strength part of the exercise diary is just a notebook with no calorie functionality.
  • Chef_Barbell
    Chef_Barbell Posts: 6,647 Member
    sijomial wrote: »
    plg999 wrote: »
    I couldn't find anything resembling a 30 minute strength workout.

    Here you go!
    tmia96v0bv1q.png

    The Strength part of the exercise diary is just a notebook with no calorie functionality.

    I was gonna be all fancy like that but I figure it's 2022... people should figure ish out. 🤷‍♀️

    Plus lazy 😂😂
  • plg999
    plg999 Posts: 10 Member
    You have to log strength training in the cardio section.

    Well, that's a plot twist I didn't see coming!
  • slade51
    slade51 Posts: 173 Member
    I just use a different app that logs to Apple health, which MFP picks up as generic strength training and shows as exercise calories to offset my food calories.

    I prefer a list of the exercises that I do, along with weight/reps/sets that I can follow during the workout. I can do this in MFP, but it’s tedious and is missing a lot of common exercises.
    With all the video routines that MFP supplies, one would think they would have some workouts that you could do at the gym. Not everyone wants to follow a video.
  • dontlikepeople
    dontlikepeople Posts: 125 Member
    Like others mentioned, I log it all as "cardio", and even my cardio I edit the calories burned.

    For whatever reason, the "calories burned" section of MFP's cardio section is INSANELY over estimated. No, sorry, I did not burn 600 calories in an hour of light cycling. The bike its self claims half that, and my own estimation is even less than that (from months and years of logging and watching numbers on a scale)
  • AnnPT77
    AnnPT77 Posts: 26,255 Member
    slade51 wrote: »
    I just use a different app that logs to Apple health, which MFP picks up as generic strength training and shows as exercise calories to offset my food calories.

    I prefer a list of the exercises that I do, along with weight/reps/sets that I can follow during the workout. I can do this in MFP, but it’s tedious and is missing a lot of common exercises.
    With all the video routines that MFP supplies, one would think they would have some workouts that you could do at the gym. Not everyone wants to follow a video.

    Yes, I agree there are better apps for tracking reps/sets than the MFP Strength section. Personally, I still use a notebook - very old school, others may prefer apps.

    To the bolded:

    Many (all?) of the workouts in Workout Routines (phone/tablet app only, very few available in free MFP, more in premium) include an exercise list that could be taken to the gym, as well as a how-to video.

    The MFP blogs (not the user blogs, the official MFP ones), in the Fitness topic there, have some workouts that are not videos (some have GIFs or something to illustrate the moves, but there's typically text, too - some are just lists with descriptive texts).

    It's not all videos.
  • heybales
    heybales Posts: 18,837 Member
    Like others mentioned, I log it all as "cardio", and even my cardio I edit the calories burned.

    For whatever reason, the "calories burned" section of MFP's cardio section is INSANELY over estimated. No, sorry, I did not burn 600 calories in an hour of light cycling. The bike its self claims half that, and my own estimation is even less than that (from months and years of logging and watching numbers on a scale)

    Any exercise that has no intensity to it is going to be potentially bad and no one could have a clue if they are hitting "light", "vigorous", "intense", ect.

    But for ones that have an intensity (except biking which is huge range due to wind/incline) - they are actually pretty good estimates by themselves of total calorie burn.
    They are based on the METS database which is based on studies.

    The other issue comes in to the fact that MFP is an add-on system rather than activity tracker accounts that are replace-only.
    So if say Fitbit said you did a 500 cal run, that replaces the base burn that was assumed for that time.
    Manually log another workout for that time with another calorie burn, it replaced what Fitbit estimated.

    On MFP though, add what could be a very excellent estimate for 325 cal 3.5 mph walk for 1 hr, and MFP will ADD to an already accounted for activity level of say Sedentary with 88 cal already given.
    Worse effect if you honestly selected Lightly-Active because of being a mom say. Now 98 base calories added to in this case.
    Even worse effect if you go slower and longer.
    Very easy to approach the mythical status log 50% of exercise often stated without knowing the why and wrongness of always doing that.

    Just to comment that it's not Insanely over-estimated, and not in all cases, and the why some issues.
  • AnnPT77
    AnnPT77 Posts: 26,255 Member
    heybales wrote: »
    Like others mentioned, I log it all as "cardio", and even my cardio I edit the calories burned.

    For whatever reason, the "calories burned" section of MFP's cardio section is INSANELY over estimated. No, sorry, I did not burn 600 calories in an hour of light cycling. The bike its self claims half that, and my own estimation is even less than that (from months and years of logging and watching numbers on a scale)

    Any exercise that has no intensity to it is going to be potentially bad and no one could have a clue if they are hitting "light", "vigorous", "intense", ect.

    But for ones that have an intensity (except biking which is huge range due to wind/incline) - they are actually pretty good estimates by themselves of total calorie burn.
    They are based on the METS database which is based on studies.

    The other issue comes in to the fact that MFP is an add-on system rather than activity tracker accounts that are replace-only.
    So if say Fitbit said you did a 500 cal run, that replaces the base burn that was assumed for that time.
    Manually log another workout for that time with another calorie burn, it replaced what Fitbit estimated.

    On MFP though, add what could be a very excellent estimate for 325 cal 3.5 mph walk for 1 hr, and MFP will ADD to an already accounted for activity level of say Sedentary with 88 cal already given.
    Worse effect if you honestly selected Lightly-Active because of being a mom say. Now 98 base calories added to in this case.
    Even worse effect if you go slower and longer.
    Very easy to approach the mythical status log 50% of exercise often stated without knowing the why and wrongness of always doing that.

    Just to comment that it's not Insanely over-estimated, and not in all cases, and the why some issues.

    Plus, around here, if someone sees a particular strategy working or not working, exercise calories seem often to get a disproportionate share of the blame . . . maybe because we add them separately, and individually, but all other activities are lumped together? Or because some of the other estimates come from a black-box "calculator" that seems all science-y?

    When someone says "I know my exercise calories are less than MFP thinks, because my weight behaves as expected", I always wonder why they're so sure their BMR/RMR estimate is precisely accurate, their activity level in MFP (or the regular-life activity that a tracker sees) is spot-on, and that their food logging is close to exact.

    It's all estimates, all the way down. The law of (semi-)large numbers saves us from ourselves a lot, makes this whole estimate-based enterprise function as well as it does in practice, IMO.