Resources explaining midstream goal changes

Hi, newbie here. I love Beeminder, but would like to learn more about the expected behavior when i change the road dial. Can anyone recommend a thread or a blog entry?

Here’s my recent story: (TL;DR - I don’t understand goal changes, and ended up flattening my road for the previous month).

I have a weight loss goal,

I am leaving for spring break on 3/25, and had a goal of 170 lbs for that date. My ultimate plan was to also weigh in at 170 or less after returning from break, then start working towards a long term goal of 156.

I thought I had figured out how to get the centerline to slope down to 170 at 3/25, then go flat for a week, them drop to 156 at 1/lb per week. I thought that starting a week before 3/25 (i.e., today), I would change my dial from 170@3/25 to 156@1lb/week, that this new goal would take effect a week from today, and that I could then take a break for a week, giving me the shape I wanted.

Instead, when i did the first step, it somehow flattened out my goal back to mid-February, so instead of sloping down to 170, it flattens at about 179 for the last few weeks. I had thought that goal changes only took place starting a week in the future - is it possible to change a goal in the past? (It’s possible that the point of the change is when I changed my goal last - from a pound per week goal to the 170 goal.)

(Sorry that my goal chart isn’t more clear - I didn’t take screen shots, and then racheted to get the road back where I wanted it.) Thanks!



First of all, it’s quite difficult to get the road to a precise value partly because of what you’ve observed with the math required to get Take a Break correct, but also because the road width changes based on the slope. You don’t get to preview the width since the graph renders the current width everywhere, so you’ll go to bed with a certain width and wake up with a different one.

Honestly, I would just email both to fix your current road issues and for any future case where you want to set a specific, precise value for a certain date.


Hi @josephk! Just like @drtall has suggested, it is better to contact support in this case. Because what you have encountered is not a not-understanding of how everything works, but a rare bug which can be reproduced in a specific combination of settings :slight_smile:


Thanks @scarabaea and @drtall! That’s very helpful!

I don’t think I need support - racheting got the road basically where I want it going forward, so support can prioritize someone else.


Chiming in late to encourage folks not to be shy about emailing support because encountering things like this really helps us both understand where confusion happens and prioritize things like our beloved but long-delayed road editor feature that will solve things like this much more elegantly.