Really confused by calorie foul

Hi all,

I’m new here and just created my first Beeminder goal. I pledged to track my calories, as I want to eat 1200 a day, I put 8400 a week as some days I intermittent fast & other days I eat a little more. The data I’m receiving is really confusing me though as it looks like it’s asking me to eat a ton of calories a week, which is completely the opposite of what I want to do! My Fitbit is connected to Beeminder.

I’m really hoping someone can help me as I don’t want to derail due to a complete misunderstanding.

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Hi, and welcome to Beeminder! :slight_smile:

First! If you derail, you’ll get an email. If you derail due to a misunderstanding, reply to that email saying so, and you definitely won’t have to pay! So don’t worry about that part :slight_smile:

It looks like the main issue is that this is a do-more goal (as in eat more calories) instead of a do-less goal (as in eat fewer calories). I think during the setup you may have chosen “Total Calories Burned” instead of “Total Calories Eaten.” Here’s how your setup should look for the type of tracking you’d like to do:

Since you just set up this goal today, it’s totally fine to delete it and make a new goal with the right settings! On your goal page, just click the DELETE NOW button here:

Let us know if those steps work for you or if you have any other questions! Also, thanks for joining the forums! We’re glad to have you here! :slight_smile:

Hi and thanks for the welcome, :slight_smile:

I’ve deleted the goal & followed the instructions above, but now the data I’m getting back is even worse & the yellow brick road is showing me as being in the red zone (it was blue before). Here are some screen caps:

I’m totally confused. Am I better entering it as a manual ‘do less’ goal so the data doesn’t get confused. Only problem with that is the Fitbit integration to count calories is handy, so I was hoping to be able to do that. Or would net calories be a better shout?

Also this one:

Don’t worry, you’re actually on the right track here! The goal is yellow because you have calories logged for today already. Fitbit does generate some kind of minimum calories on their end if I remember right, they’re just assuming that you did actually eat and move some minimum amount each day, even if you weren’t wearing your Fitbit. So it looks like you have 2,059 calories entered already. I’ve bumped your road up a bit so that you have a little more wiggle room as you’re getting started, so you’re back to a blue data point. :slight_smile:

About the second screen shot… I’m not sure what’s going on there, but I’ve resynced the data, so that should go away the next time it’s refreshed! If not though, please definitely let us know, and someone who knows more than I do about the technical things will look into it tomorrow :slight_smile:

Hi again :slight_smile:

Well I’ve actually only logged 500 ish calories on Fitbit today as it’s a fast day & I already know what I’ll be eating, so I’m not sure why it says 2000? As you can see, the stats are also still iffy:


Hi! I think this confusion is actually due to the fact that Fitbit is syncing two days worth of data. I see two entries for you: 1659 calories on the 20th and 400 on the 21st. So it sounds like that’s correct, though not what you expected the goal to do?

Hi & thanks for responding.

Perhaps that’s it. I started the goal on Monday, so I’m not sure why it registered Sunday’s calories. If I stick to under 8,400 will I stay on track for this goal? It doesn’t matter that much if I don’t understand what the data is saying to me, so long as I don’t derail due to a misunderstanding.

Do you know if I can also change my goal weekly (like some weeks I might want to have a higher calorie goal & other weeks lower) xx

Looks like you can add up to 8841 by Sunday, so yes, you should be okay! Sorry about it fetching earlier data; often it grabs up to seven days of data, so I’m actually not sure why it was only Sunday!

You can change your goal, but unfortunately changes take a week to kick in (to avoid it being possible to make your goal easier right away), so you’d have to plan it in advance. Does that make sense?

(And thank you, thank you, for asking questions! We need all users to keep bugging us when things don’t make sense; it’s a super important source of feedback for us.)

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Thanks again,

So if I change my goal now, it’ll kick in by next Monday? (Hope that makes sense!)

Sorry to bother you guys again, but I’ve also received an email today telling me I’m in the wrong lane & back in the orange zone. I should be perfectly on track according to my logging though?

Yep! Seven days from when you make the change, it’ll kick in.

Re: being in the wrong lane, it’s because it’s a do-less goal. I’m afraid they’re a bit more prone to crying emergency – if you’re on track and not eating more calories than your weekly calorie goal/7, you’ll be fine.

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Ok thanks, that’s a relief! Given that it wound up syncing Sunday’s data, does that mean that Sunday is the day when my goal re-sets (so from Sunday I’d have 8400 calls for the week again?)

Good question! It won’t reset exactly, the goal continues at a constant rate of 8400/week.