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How to Track Exercise, Sleep, Activity on a Fitbit

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Support.com Tech Pro Team
This Guided Path® was written and reviewed by Support.com’s Tech Pro team. With decades of experience, our Tech Pros are passionate about making technology work for you. We love feedback! Let us know what you think about this Guided Path by rating it at the end.

Introduction

Every Fitbit can track your steps and minutes while you're on the move. Depending on what Fitbit you have you can choose to track a variety of other stats, including sleep, workouts, water and food intake, weight, and female health in the Fitbit app or online on the Fitbit Website.
This guide will walk you through what you can track, how you can track it, and how you can see it once its been tracked.
Before You Begin:
You must have the Fitbit App installed.
Fitbit Versa Smart Watch

1 What Fitbits Can Track

While all Fitbits can track heart rate and exercise, some can track other data. Refer to the table below for what your Fitbit can do.

Stat Being Tracked Fitbit Device
Heart Rate Blaze, Charge 2, Charge 3, Inspire HR, Ionic, Versa, Versa 2, Versa Lite
Hourly Activity Alta, Blaze, Charge 2, Charge 3, Flex 2, Inspire, Inspire HR, Ionic, Versa, Versa 2, Versa Lite
Distance Alta, Blaze, Charge 2, Charge 3, Flex 2, Inspire, Inspire HR, Ionic, Versa, Versa 2, Versa Lite
Calories Alta, Blaze, Charge 2, Charge 3, Flex 2, Inspire, Inspire HR, Ionic, Versa, Versa 2, Versa Lite
Floors Charge 2, Charge 3, Ionic, Versa, Versa 2

2 Change or Set a Fitbit Goal

With the Fitbit app you're capable of setting various goals to work towards.

What Goals Can Be Tracked

Daily Activies
Steps taken, active minutes, or calories burned. Your device vibrates when you meet your goal.
Exercise
How many days per week you want to work out. See additional stats in your exercise history.
Food
How many calories you consume each day versus your estimated calories burned.
Sleep
How many hours you want to sleep per night. Check your sleep logs on certain Fitbit devices or in the Fitbit app.
Water
Daily water consumption goal. Manually log your water intake on certain Fitbit devices, or in the Fitbit app.
Weight
Goal for losing, gaining, or maintaining weight. Automatically log your weigh-ins with your Fitbit scale, or manually log them on certain Fitbit devices or in the Fitbit app. You can also add a goal for body-fat percentage with certain scales.

How to Set a Goal

  1. Launch Fitbit and tap the Today tab.
    Fitbit app icon
    Today tab icon
  2. Tap your Profile Picture.
    Your profile account picture
  3. Under Goals, tap on Activity.
    Activity selection
  4. Tap on the item you wish to modify and set a new goal.
    Activity goals page

3 View All-Day Activity

What is All-Day Activity?

When you are looking at All-Day Activity, you are viewing progress towards your daily goals for steps, distance, calories burned and active minutes, and see your trends over time.

Activities that can be tracked are:

  • Steps taken
  • Current heart rate
  • Distance covered
  • Calories burned
  • Floors climbed
  • Active minutes
  • Hourly activity

How to View Your All-Day Activity on Your Fitbit

  1. On your device, swipe up from the clockface to view your stats and activities.
    Swiping up on the fitbit

How to View Your All-Day Activity on the App

  1. Launch Fitbit.
    Fitbit app icon
  2. Tap the Today tab.
    Today tab icon
  3. On the today tap you'll see your All-Day Activity listed.
    All day activity listed on the app

How to View Your All-Day Activity on the Website

On your Fitbit dashboard you can find other information captured by your tracker, such as:

Sleep
Your sleep history, including hours slept and sleep patterns
Hours Moving
The hours of your day that you were stationary vs. active (walked at least 250 steps)
Exercise
Your exercise history and progress towards a weekly exercise goal
Heart Rate
Your beats per minute (BPM), average resting heart rate, and time spent in heart-rate zones
  1. Open your browser and navigate to https://accounts.fitbit.com/login.
    Chrome browser with the fitbit address
  2. The home screen on your fitbit dashboard will have your information.
    Fitbit dashboard

4 Fitbit Sleep Tracking

When your body is completely at rest and unmoving, your Fitbit records that you are asleep.

If you use a Fitbit device with heart-rate tracking (except Fitbit Charge HR and Fitbit Surge) to track your sleep, you'll see a record of the sleep stages you cycle through at night.

For other devices, you'll see your sleep pattern which shows your time spent awake, restless, and asleep. A restless state of sleep indicates that you moved from a very restful position into one involving greater movement, such as turning over in bed. When your device indicates that you are moving so much that restful sleep would not be possible, your sleep graph will indicate that you were awake.

Time asleep is calculated by subtracting your time awake or restless from the overall tracked time. For example, if you slept 8 hours, but woke up 2 times for 15 minutes each, the time asleep will show 7 hr 30 min.

View Sleep Data in the Fitbit App
  1. Launch Fitbit.
    Fitbit app icon
  2. Tap the Today tab.
    Today tab icon
  3. Tap the Sleep Tile (If it says "How did you sleep?", your device's data hasn't synced with your dashboard).
    The sleep tile
  4. Swipe through the graphics at the top to see your sleep stats.
  5. Tap the expander icon in the top right to open and close more detailed views.
    Expander icon
View Sleep Data on Fitbit.com
  1. Open your browser, type in https://accounts.fitbit.com/login and press Enter or Return.
    Chrome browser with the fitbit address  
  2. Tap the sleep tile (If it says "How did you sleep?", your device's data hasn't synced with your dashboard) and then tap Today or another day to see details.
    Fitbit sleep tile
  3. Swipe through the graphics at the top to see your sleep stats.
    Fitbit online dashboard showing sleep
Change Your Sleep Goal in the Fitbit App
  1. Launch Fitbit.
    Fitbit app icon
  2. Tap the Today tab.
    Today tab icon
  3. From the Fitbit app dashboard, tap the Sleep Tile. This is the tile that says "How did you sleep?" or, if you tracked sleep the night before, shows how many hours and minutes you slept.
    The sleep tile
  4. Tap the gear in the top right.
    Sleep settings gear
  5. Adjust your sleep goal and save.
    Sleep goal
Change Sleep Goal on Fitbit.com  
  1. Open your browser, type in https://accounts.fitbit.com/login and press Enter or Return.
    Chrome browser with the fitbit address  
  2. Tap the sleep tile (If it says "How did you sleep?", your device's data hasn't synced with your dashboard) and then tap Today or another day to see details.
    Fitbit sleep tile
  3. Tap or click the moon icon on the bottom.
  4. Adjust your sleep goal and save.
Set Bedtime Reminder in the Fitbit App
  1. Launch Fitbit.
    Fitbit app icon
  2. Tap the Today tab.
    Today tab icon
  3. From the dashboard, tap the Sleep Tile. This is the tile that says "How did you sleep?" or, if you tracked sleep the night before, shows how many hours and minutes you slept.
    Sleep tile
  4. Tap the gear icon in the top right.
    Sleep gear icon
  5. Turn on the bedtime reminder and set the time and frequency.
    Sleep reminder on fitbit app
Set Bedtime Reminder on Fitbit.com
  1. Open your browser, type in https://accounts.fitbit.com/login and press Enter or Return.
    Chrome browser with the fitbit address  
  2. Tap the sleep tile (If it says "How did you sleep?", your device's data hasn't synced with your dashboard) and then tap Today or another day to see details.
    Fitbit sleep tile
  3. Tap the moon icon on the bottom.
  4. Find the option to turn on the reminder and set the time and frequency.

5 Start an Exercise with Fitbit

You can choose from over a dozen exercise types to customize the Exercise menu with your favorites. Some exercises, like running, biking, and hiking have a GPS option.

  1. Launch the Exercise App.
    On a Charge or Alta
    Charge 3 showing the exercise app Press the button until you get to the exercise app and tap to select the exercise of your choice.
    Versa or Ionic
    The exercise app selected on a Fitbit screen. On your Versa or Ionic tracker, swipe left and select the Exercise app.
  2. Press and hold the button to start the exercise or tap the start button.
    Start button
  3. If you see a phone icon at the top, that exercise offers connected GPS and your device is connected to a GPS signal. If the phone icon is crossed out, a GPS connection isn’t available. An animated dashed line means your device is trying to find a GPS signal.
    Charge 2 with phone icon highlighted
  4. During your workout, you tap your tracker to scroll through your real-time stats or check the time of day.
  5. To pause your workout, press the pause button. Then press the button again to resume the exercise.
    Pause button
  6. When you’re done with your workout, press the button to stop recording. You’ll see a flag icon and a congratulatory message.
    Flag icon finish line
  7. Press the button to see a summary of your results. With each button press you’ll cycle to a different set of stats. You can view your exercise summary once. Press Done when finished.
    Exercise summary

6 Reading the Heart Rate on a Fitbit

Reading the Heart Rate on My Fitbit 

  1. On most Fitbits, swipe up to open Fitbit Today.
  2. This will show your current heart rate and either your heart-rate zone or resting heart rate (if not in a zone).
    Heart rate

What Are Heart Rate Zones?

  • Heart-rate zones help you target the training intensity of your choice. Default heart-rate zones are calculated using your estimated maximum heart rate.
  • Fitbit calculates your maximum heart rate with the common formula of 220 minus your age.
  • The heart icon you see above your current heart rate tells you your zone. Refer to the following for an explanation of the different heart rate zones.
    Out of or No Zone
    Out of zone heart rate icon Your heart rate is below 50% of your maximum heart rate and may be elevated but not enough to be considered exercise.
    Fat Burn Zone
    Fat burn icon Between 50% and 69% of your maximum heart rate. This is a low-to-medium intensity exercise zone. It's called the Fat Burn Zone because a higher percentage of calories are burned from fat, but the total calorie burn rate is lower.
    Cardio Zone
    Cardio Zone iconBetween 70% and 84% of maximum heart rate. Medium-to-high intensity exercise zone. Pushing yourself but not straining.
    Peak Zone
    Peak heart zone iconGreater than 85% of your maximum heart rate. High-intensity exercise zone. Good for short intense sessions that improve performance and speed.

7 Automatically Track Your Exercise with Fitbit

The SmartTrack feature automatically recognizes select exercises to ensure you get credit for your most active moments of the day. Unless you changed it, SmartTrack will track activities at least 15 minutes long.

SmartTrack recognizes continuous, high-movement activities like:

  • Walking
  • Running
  • Outdoor biking
  • Elliptical
  • Sports
  • Aerobic workouts

Can I Turn Off Automatic Tracking

You can adjust when automatic tracking kicks in or turn it off entirely.

  1. Launch Fitbit.
    Fitbit app icon
  2. Tap the Today tab.
    Today tab icon
  3. Tap the Exercise tile.
    The exercise tile
  4. Tap the Settings wheel.
    The settings wheel under exercises
  5. Select the exercise you want to adjust.
    A list of adjustable exercises
  6. You can turn off Auto-Recognize by toggling it.
    Toggling auto-recognize

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Every Fitbit can track your steps and minutes while you're on the move. Depending on what Fitbit you have you can choose to track a variety of other stats, including sleep, workouts, water and food intake, weight, and female health in the Fitbit app or online on the Fitbit Website.
This guide will walk you through what you can track, how you can track it, and how you can see it once its been tracked.
Before You Begin:
You must have the Fitbit App installed.
Fitbit Versa Smart Watch
While all Fitbits can track heart rate and exercise, some can track other data. Refer to the table below for what your Fitbit can do.

Stat Being Tracked Fitbit Device
Heart Rate Blaze, Charge 2, Charge 3, Inspire HR, Ionic, Versa, Versa 2, Versa Lite
Hourly Activity Alta, Blaze, Charge 2, Charge 3, Flex 2, Inspire, Inspire HR, Ionic, Versa, Versa 2, Versa Lite
Distance Alta, Blaze, Charge 2, Charge 3, Flex 2, Inspire, Inspire HR, Ionic, Versa, Versa 2, Versa Lite
Calories Alta, Blaze, Charge 2, Charge 3, Flex 2, Inspire, Inspire HR, Ionic, Versa, Versa 2, Versa Lite
Floors Charge 2, Charge 3, Ionic, Versa, Versa 2
With the Fitbit app you're capable of setting various goals to work towards.

What Goals Can Be Tracked

Daily Activies
Steps taken, active minutes, or calories burned. Your device vibrates when you meet your goal.
Exercise
How many days per week you want to work out. See additional stats in your exercise history.
Food
How many calories you consume each day versus your estimated calories burned.
Sleep
How many hours you want to sleep per night. Check your sleep logs on certain Fitbit devices or in the Fitbit app.
Water
Daily water consumption goal. Manually log your water intake on certain Fitbit devices, or in the Fitbit app.
Weight
Goal for losing, gaining, or maintaining weight. Automatically log your weigh-ins with your Fitbit scale, or manually log them on certain Fitbit devices or in the Fitbit app. You can also add a goal for body-fat percentage with certain scales.

How to Set a Goal

  1. Launch Fitbit and tap the Today tab.
    Fitbit app icon
    Today tab icon
  2. Tap your Profile Picture.
    Your profile account picture
  3. Under Goals, tap on Activity.
    Activity selection
  4. Tap on the item you wish to modify and set a new goal.
    Activity goals page

What is All-Day Activity?

When you are looking at All-Day Activity, you are viewing progress towards your daily goals for steps, distance, calories burned and active minutes, and see your trends over time.

Activities that can be tracked are:

  • Steps taken
  • Current heart rate
  • Distance covered
  • Calories burned
  • Floors climbed
  • Active minutes
  • Hourly activity

How to View Your All-Day Activity on Your Fitbit

  1. On your device, swipe up from the clockface to view your stats and activities.
    Swiping up on the fitbit

How to View Your All-Day Activity on the App

  1. Launch Fitbit.
    Fitbit app icon
  2. Tap the Today tab.
    Today tab icon
  3. On the today tap you'll see your All-Day Activity listed.
    All day activity listed on the app

How to View Your All-Day Activity on the Website

On your Fitbit dashboard you can find other information captured by your tracker, such as:

Sleep
Your sleep history, including hours slept and sleep patterns
Hours Moving
The hours of your day that you were stationary vs. active (walked at least 250 steps)
Exercise
Your exercise history and progress towards a weekly exercise goal
Heart Rate
Your beats per minute (BPM), average resting heart rate, and time spent in heart-rate zones
  1. Open your browser and navigate to https://accounts.fitbit.com/login.
    Chrome browser with the fitbit address
  2. The home screen on your fitbit dashboard will have your information.
    Fitbit dashboard

When your body is completely at rest and unmoving, your Fitbit records that you are asleep.

If you use a Fitbit device with heart-rate tracking (except Fitbit Charge HR and Fitbit Surge) to track your sleep, you'll see a record of the sleep stages you cycle through at night.

For other devices, you'll see your sleep pattern which shows your time spent awake, restless, and asleep. A restless state of sleep indicates that you moved from a very restful position into one involving greater movement, such as turning over in bed. When your device indicates that you are moving so much that restful sleep would not be possible, your sleep graph will indicate that you were awake.

Time asleep is calculated by subtracting your time awake or restless from the overall tracked time. For example, if you slept 8 hours, but woke up 2 times for 15 minutes each, the time asleep will show 7 hr 30 min.

View Sleep Data in the Fitbit App
  1. Launch Fitbit.
    Fitbit app icon
  2. Tap the Today tab.
    Today tab icon
  3. Tap the Sleep Tile (If it says "How did you sleep?", your device's data hasn't synced with your dashboard).
    The sleep tile
  4. Swipe through the graphics at the top to see your sleep stats.
  5. Tap the expander icon in the top right to open and close more detailed views.
    Expander icon
View Sleep Data on Fitbit.com
  1. Open your browser, type in https://accounts.fitbit.com/login and press Enter or Return.
    Chrome browser with the fitbit address  
  2. Tap the sleep tile (If it says "How did you sleep?", your device's data hasn't synced with your dashboard) and then tap Today or another day to see details.
    Fitbit sleep tile
  3. Swipe through the graphics at the top to see your sleep stats.
    Fitbit online dashboard showing sleep
Change Your Sleep Goal in the Fitbit App
  1. Launch Fitbit.
    Fitbit app icon
  2. Tap the Today tab.
    Today tab icon
  3. From the Fitbit app dashboard, tap the Sleep Tile. This is the tile that says "How did you sleep?" or, if you tracked sleep the night before, shows how many hours and minutes you slept.
    The sleep tile
  4. Tap the gear in the top right.
    Sleep settings gear
  5. Adjust your sleep goal and save.
    Sleep goal
Change Sleep Goal on Fitbit.com  
  1. Open your browser, type in https://accounts.fitbit.com/login and press Enter or Return.
    Chrome browser with the fitbit address  
  2. Tap the sleep tile (If it says "How did you sleep?", your device's data hasn't synced with your dashboard) and then tap Today or another day to see details.
    Fitbit sleep tile
  3. Tap or click the moon icon on the bottom.
  4. Adjust your sleep goal and save.
Set Bedtime Reminder in the Fitbit App
  1. Launch Fitbit.
    Fitbit app icon
  2. Tap the Today tab.
    Today tab icon
  3. From the dashboard, tap the Sleep Tile. This is the tile that says "How did you sleep?" or, if you tracked sleep the night before, shows how many hours and minutes you slept.
    Sleep tile
  4. Tap the gear icon in the top right.
    Sleep gear icon
  5. Turn on the bedtime reminder and set the time and frequency.
    Sleep reminder on fitbit app
Set Bedtime Reminder on Fitbit.com
  1. Open your browser, type in https://accounts.fitbit.com/login and press Enter or Return.
    Chrome browser with the fitbit address  
  2. Tap the sleep tile (If it says "How did you sleep?", your device's data hasn't synced with your dashboard) and then tap Today or another day to see details.
    Fitbit sleep tile
  3. Tap the moon icon on the bottom.
  4. Find the option to turn on the reminder and set the time and frequency.

You can choose from over a dozen exercise types to customize the Exercise menu with your favorites. Some exercises, like running, biking, and hiking have a GPS option.

  1. Launch the Exercise App.
    On a Charge or Alta
    Charge 3 showing the exercise app Press the button until you get to the exercise app and tap to select the exercise of your choice.
    Versa or Ionic
    The exercise app selected on a Fitbit screen. On your Versa or Ionic tracker, swipe left and select the Exercise app.
  2. Press and hold the button to start the exercise or tap the start button.
    Start button
  3. If you see a phone icon at the top, that exercise offers connected GPS and your device is connected to a GPS signal. If the phone icon is crossed out, a GPS connection isn’t available. An animated dashed line means your device is trying to find a GPS signal.
    Charge 2 with phone icon highlighted
  4. During your workout, you tap your tracker to scroll through your real-time stats or check the time of day.
  5. To pause your workout, press the pause button. Then press the button again to resume the exercise.
    Pause button
  6. When you’re done with your workout, press the button to stop recording. You’ll see a flag icon and a congratulatory message.
    Flag icon finish line
  7. Press the button to see a summary of your results. With each button press you’ll cycle to a different set of stats. You can view your exercise summary once. Press Done when finished.
    Exercise summary

Reading the Heart Rate on My Fitbit 

  1. On most Fitbits, swipe up to open Fitbit Today.
  2. This will show your current heart rate and either your heart-rate zone or resting heart rate (if not in a zone).
    Heart rate

What Are Heart Rate Zones?

  • Heart-rate zones help you target the training intensity of your choice. Default heart-rate zones are calculated using your estimated maximum heart rate.
  • Fitbit calculates your maximum heart rate with the common formula of 220 minus your age.
  • The heart icon you see above your current heart rate tells you your zone. Refer to the following for an explanation of the different heart rate zones.
    Out of or No Zone
    Out of zone heart rate icon Your heart rate is below 50% of your maximum heart rate and may be elevated but not enough to be considered exercise.
    Fat Burn Zone
    Fat burn icon Between 50% and 69% of your maximum heart rate. This is a low-to-medium intensity exercise zone. It's called the Fat Burn Zone because a higher percentage of calories are burned from fat, but the total calorie burn rate is lower.
    Cardio Zone
    Cardio Zone iconBetween 70% and 84% of maximum heart rate. Medium-to-high intensity exercise zone. Pushing yourself but not straining.
    Peak Zone
    Peak heart zone iconGreater than 85% of your maximum heart rate. High-intensity exercise zone. Good for short intense sessions that improve performance and speed.

The SmartTrack feature automatically recognizes select exercises to ensure you get credit for your most active moments of the day. Unless you changed it, SmartTrack will track activities at least 15 minutes long.

SmartTrack recognizes continuous, high-movement activities like:

  • Walking
  • Running
  • Outdoor biking
  • Elliptical
  • Sports
  • Aerobic workouts

Can I Turn Off Automatic Tracking

You can adjust when automatic tracking kicks in or turn it off entirely.

  1. Launch Fitbit.
    Fitbit app icon
  2. Tap the Today tab.
    Today tab icon
  3. Tap the Exercise tile.
    The exercise tile
  4. Tap the Settings wheel.
    The settings wheel under exercises
  5. Select the exercise you want to adjust.
    A list of adjustable exercises
  6. You can turn off Auto-Recognize by toggling it.
    Toggling auto-recognize