Stride math

After being gypped 0.2 miles on Friday (my Vivofit3 counting steps vs his Forerunner45 using GLONASS+GPS), I started trying to figure out how to get a more accurate estimate for my stride.

Unfortunately Garmin doesn’t report the steps per activity, at least for a Vivofit3. But it does have the ability to display steps during an activity. (Note – the settings make it look like you can choose to see both estimated distance AND steps on the little screen but toggling “activity distance” *on* in practice toggles “activity steps” *off*, and vice versa.)

So, *armed* with this knowledge (pun partially intended) and with the Vivofit3 set to display steps, H and I took a walk together, clocking “start” simultaneously and pausing at the end long enough for the Vivofit3 to catch up with its step count:

His wristband showing 1.07 miles, hers showing 2547 steps.​

There. Now we have a more accurate distance, coupled with the step count the Vivofit3 clocked. (The Vivofit3 thinks we only went 0.92 miles 😡)

The Connect phone app will calculate stride but it needs the distance in feet. so we do a conversion.

Conversion app showing 1.07 miles equals 5649.6 ft

Technically I could have converted to km and m, but this is Amurika, where we continue to insist on using an outdated pre-Napoleonic system of measurement that pretty much the rest of the world has wisely abandoned decades ago. Don’t get me started on that…

Garmin app with 5650 ft and 2547 steps plugged in, showing a stride length of 2.22​ ft

So now, as soon as Garmin resolves its outage 🙄, I can upload my stride to my Vivofit3 and get proper credit for my distances. At least for 1 mi walks on level dirt roads… LOL All bets are off if the walks are longer and I’m tired or going up a grade. 😏 By the time that will matter, I’ll be ready for my own gps tracker.

10 thoughts on “Stride math”

  1. Great work today Anja, I love counting steps too but let the step counter on my phone work it out, I am lucky though I don’t think its always accurate but if I get over 6.000 steps I am very happy! Luckily managed a walk between showers today. x

    1. Thanks! 😁

      Really the point of these little activity trackers (and phone step trackers) is just to get us to move. I get that. 😉 But as a former scientist it bugs me when estimates are off by 6% or more…

      Especially when Garmin is gamifying the whole thing and handing out “badges” based on distances! 😂

  2. Tripped by the frustrations of a scientific mind! BTW, I got your Garmin “friend request” but it would be worthless at this point as my Garmin (an old Forerunner 910XT triathlon watch) no longer is working to synch to Connect! So… not intending to snub y’all, just “it is what it is”.

  3. I have a cast off fitbit but find my results discouraging. Hope my recovery gets me out of pain limitations as I keep walking.

    1. Hang in there. 💖Sometimes even walking has to be gradual and limited; my bad knee kept me from walking more than 4K steps / day. I’m only able to do this many now because I was finally able to convince them to replace it!

      (And that recovery was no picnic either 🙄)

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