Weight Watchers Beta Dashboard

When I first saw the Beta Tracker, it was an option on the main plan manager page. Since then, when I log in I am automatically taken to a similar page where is the Beta Dashboard.  It is very like the beta tracker was, but on the right it has links to featured articles and not just recipes.

WW Beta Dashboard

Also at the top there is a link to “See What’s New.”  If you go to that, then you get an FAQ.  From the FAQ, there is one ray of sunshine, but other things are not as hopeful.

One of my real disappointments with the Beta Tracker is that the Weight page no longer shows weight loss graphs and there is no chart of weight lost.   Maybe at least some missing information is coming back.  In the FAQ it is noted that Weight Charts are coming soon.  Now, a chart is not a graph but it is something.  And, I’m hoping that when the charts come that graphs come back.

On the other hand, it is clear that certain things are gone.  Healthy Checks and Good Health Guidelines are no longer on the tracker “in order to streamline your tracking experience.”  This was the one thing that Weight Watchers gave you in the tracker so you could check off the quality of what you were eating.  I’m not happy it is gone.  That said, this may be something that won’t be needed with the new program coming out in December.  I’ll reserve judgment about this and the new program since I haven’t seen the new program yet.

On the having to scroll day by day to look at what you have tracked before, this is noted and there is no indication that we will get back the ability to have a drop down calendar so you can pick a specific date.

It is indicated that the Meal Builder and Recipe Builder will be back.  Drag & Drop is not a feature now but is “on our radar for later updates.”  At this point, we are still in waiting mode for these.  I’m thinking Drag & Drop doesn’t sound like it will be coming anytime soon.

The FAQ notes that the tracker only shows how many Points Plus are left for the day but “in the future, we may add meal totals to make scanning through your day easier.”  I’m glad they are at least thinking about this, but it is disappointing that it sounds like something that they don’t really have a clear plan to do.

Unfortunately, they make it clear that Progress Reports are no longer a feature.  I did use those somewhat.  The bigger loss for me is not being able to see the entire week of tracked food.  It is interesting to me that when you go to Activity you do have an option to see the day or the entire week.  Also, it is importing more information from my Fitbit.  It is showing my total steps and showing the specific exercise activities I had logged in Fitbit.  I would guess that the number you get for Activity Points for steps is really for the activity you do during the day that is not specifically logged activity.

Here is how it looks for a couple of days:

Activity Log Beta

I am glad we can look at the week for the Activity, but there definitely is something wrong there. Look at October 26th.  It has me earning 9 activity points.  2 points where for a Digifit Walk.  That seems about right.  When Digifit is in there, that means I used my Chest Strap heart rate monitor with the Digifit software.  When I do that, Digifit sends the information to Fitbit and Fitbit uses the calorie burn from Digifit based upon the chest strap.  That is fine.

However, I did not do 3 28 minute weight lifting sessions on that day.  On my log at Fitbit it shows 2 entries for the 28 minutes.  One entry was the Digifit tracking using the chest strap.  I also tracked an activity on my Charge HR for that period.  When Digifit sends the data to Fitbit, Fitbit in my calories burned on their page for the total for the day counts only the calories from Digifit.  It uses the heart rate graph from tracking it on the Charge HR directly (which is why I do that) but only uses the Digifit calories).  What Weight Watchers is doing, however, is giving me points for both activities as if I had done them at separate times of the day.

In short, Fitbit when it sees two activities tracked over the same period if time only gives me credit for the calories of the one using the chest strap.  It doesn’t double count.  Weight Watchers is double counting.  Also, Weight Watchers has a third one called “Weights from Fitbit” so it is triple counting.  On that one, I recall tracking this first under the name Weight Lifting, then I deleted it and tracked it under the name Weights (to keep the name consistent).  In Fitbit, once deleted that was gone.  Weight Watchers is giving me 2 points for that.

This is really not a beta tracker issue.  This is more a problem with the Fitbit integration with eTools.  In the past I felt I received some odd Activity Points that were really high.  But, Weight Watchers wasn’t detailing what it basing the Activity Points on so I couldn’t find out the error.  Now I can.  One thing I’ve learned from this is not use the activity tracker function in the Charge HR while using a chest strap.  I do that because I knew Fitbit wasn’t double counting and it gave me a backup if Digifit somehow quit tracking or got accidentally turned off (occasionally, that has happened when I somehow paused it by mistake).  But, if Weight Watchers is going to double count for that type of thing I need to not track an activity on my Charge HR when I am using a chest strap with Digifit (I do that as I get better calorie burn information for some activities using a chest strap).

Anyway, for Weight Watchers members, check out the Beta Dashboard and Tracker and give lots of feedback.  Also, if your have an activity tracker linked to your account, check the logged activity for any errors.  I don’t see a way to fix it, but it is good to know if it is wrong so you can at least mentally subtract any unearned Activity Points.

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