Data Insights #2: Conrad Connect Users More Active Despite December Weight Gain

The second instalment of our Insights focuses on smart fitness equipment owned by members of the Conrad Connect Community. The present study is based on anonymous and aggregated data collected by activity trackers connected to smart scales. Don’t get the wrong idea though. The fact that Conrad Connect subscribers are more active despite having gained weight by the end of December is actually a very promising development.

Gaining weight during the build-up to the festive period comes as no surprise. After one month (or more, with many shops these days selling seasonal food from as early as September) of carb-loading by munching gingerbread, cookies, stollen, pies and puddings inevitably results in putting on the pounds. Means our community isn’t in any way different from anyone else. And there’s nothing wrong with a little indulging around Christmas. Besides, here’s the kicker:

“Conrad Connect subscribers are more active”

Our results show that our community members are more active than the average person living in Germany. According to this research carried out in 2017, Germans clocked on average 5205 steps every day. Looking at our 2018 community data based on all those of you who hooked up Garmin or FitBit trackers to our platform, our community members clocked a significantly higher number of steps per day – and that throughout the entire year which includes December!

Fitness Tracker-Joggen_FitBit_Garmin_Polar
Using activity trackers from FitBit, Garmin or Polar during jogging helps you keep fit. And connecting your tracker to our platform puts you among those
being above-average when it comes to being active and exercising.

Conrad Connect helps you stay motivated

1. Get a text message when you’ve reached your FitBit step goal and  Email notification when Garmin step goal has been achieved

There are many ways of combining activity tracker (or Polar) usage with a notification service (including Dashboard alerts), all of them boiling down to someone getting notified as soon as a user-defined number of steps has been reached. This someone may be you, a person you train with, a friend, your partner or spouse, someone who constantly tells you to get active, or someone who supports you and loves to hear how you get on. Goes without saying that you can send messages to more than one person, and even use different message content.

2. Create a fitness data Google sheet bzw. Use Google sheet for fitness competition and analysis

Joggen in der Gruppe_FitBit_Polar
Jogging with friends and using activity trackers such as FitBits and
Polars helps you stay motivated. Below tells you how.

Creating a spreadsheet project to log your activity data such as number of steps, burned calories, and  covered mileage is quick, easy and really useful. It helps you keep an eye on your progress in the long term and allows you to use graphs to visualise your achievements. Everything you need to know to get your project up and running is available here. Moreover, the project isn’t limited to data from one device: For instance, feeding data from multiple trackers into one spreadsheet allows staging a friendly competition, comparing the results at the end of the week, coming up with weekly rankings, or determining the group’s top performer of the month.

3. End-of-day step count check

If the activity goal for the day has been achieved, lights change their colour to green and the TV turns itself on. However, if you are still falling short, lights switch to red and you get a text on your phone telling you, weather permitting, to go out for a jog, or to head for the gym. Activate the program via a action button (followed by either selecting the respective option on the dashboard, via home assistant using your voice, or pressing a smart switch). Alternatively, set up automated execution e.g. triggered by coming home after 6 pm).

Summary: Comparing the daily step count of Conrad Connect users to the step count of the average person living in Germany

We wanted to find out whether Conrad Connect community members in Germany took more steps each day in 2018 than the average person living in the country (based on 2017 data). Samples were compared using parametric and non-parametric t-tests by Student and Wilcoxon. 

Fitness-Tracker zurückgelegte Schritte StudieAbove graph shows the average number of steps taken by Conrad Connect users in each month. The step count of the average person is represented by the red horizontal line. Conrad Connect users clocked significantly more steps on each day in 2018 than the average person in Germany did in 2017 (p<0.001).

Users of our platform took on average 7434 steps per day, which is significantly more than the 5205 steps observed for the rest of the population. This also shows that users connecting a Fitbit or Garmin tracker to Conrad Connect are more active than the average person living in Germany.

Summary: Changes in body weight (kg) over time

Based on their daily step count, Conrad Connect users exercise more than the average person in Germany. However, does this also translate into other fitness areas? We investigated changes in body weight of Conrad Connect users sampled between  December 2018 and the beginning of January 2019, to identify potential weight gains over the festive period.

Gewichtszunahme Weihnachten StudieAbove figure reveals a wide range of body weights across the participants. To determine the average change in body weight, weight distribution represented by the 5th , 50th  and 95th percentiles was plotted against time (days).

The red curve represents the result. Between December 1, 2018 and January 7, 2019, the average body weight of Conrad Connect users increased by approximately 700 grams.

Summary: Changes in body weight (kg) over time compared between countries (AT, CH, DE)

We also compared the weight data of Conrad Connect users in Germany with those of their fellow users living in Austria and Switzerland.

Gewichtszunahme Weihnachten Studie DACHThe figure illustrates the average changes in body weight observed between the beginning of  December 2018 and the beginning of January 2019 dependent on the country of residence.

The body weight of the residents of all three countries significantly increased throughout the observation period. However, unlike their German counterparts, Conrad Connect users resident in Austria and, most prominently, in Switzerland went through a short stint of weight loss around December 14, 2018.