In short, the appropriately named "Active Calories" (kcal) measurement displayed on COROS watches and within the COROS app is an estimation of the calories burned during recorded workouts and times where your watch records a cadence over 130 steps/minute, most common when walking quickly.
Depending on whether or not you have ever measured calories in the past using a formula or a wearable device, the number displayed on your COROS watch may appear to be low. The reason being, our Active Calories measurement does not include your Resting Metabolic or Basal Metabolic Rate (the terms are used interchangeably).
In a simple explanation, your Resting Metabolic Rate (RMR) is the amount of energy (calories) that it takes to keep your body alive, things such as breathing, digestion, maintaining body temperature, and many more factors that play into what makes up Resting Metabolic Rate. This number will vary greatly from one individual to another based on genetic influences, height, weight, gender, and more.
When calculating Active Calories for Strength Training recorded on a COROS watch, there are unique algorithms to each exercise that are based on the workout mode, exercise selected, workout load, and heart rate when choosing a body part. If your Active Calorie measurement seems to be incorrect, please check your profile settings to ensure that your weight, height, and gender are correct as these factors play a significant role in the calculation. For all activities outside of Strength Training, heart rate primary factor in the Active Calories estimation.
We want to reiterate that the Active Calories measured by your COROS watch do not include the Resting Metabolic Rate in our estimation. If you are interested in your personal Resting Metabolic Rate might be there are various sources online to come up with a number based on the factors mentioned above. In addition, the Active Calories metric does not track the small variances in calories burned throughout the day if your watch doesn't detect a cadence (steps/minute) above 130 or if the watch is not recording an activity.
In full transparency, measuring calories from the wrist, no matter the device, has limitations. To improve accuracy in the Active Calories estimation it's vital that your COROS watch is able to gather an accurate heart rate reading. To receive the most accurate heart rate data it is important to keep the sensors on your watch clean, wear the watch above your wrist bone and tight enough that it does not slide around on your arm. Keeping the heart rate sensor flush to your skin prevents outside light from impacting the sensor readings in a way that leads to inaccuracy.
While we understand that counting calories can be incredibly valuable and provide great direction for many COROS user's in achieving their goals, it's important to note that even the Food and Drug Administration (in the US) allows for a 20% margin on nutrition labels. For example, if a label reads 1,000 calories, in reality, it may be anywhere from 800-1200.
In order to change or set your daily goals (both Calories and Exercise time), open the COROS app and navigate to your Profile page (see photos below). Next, press Settings and press on the number next to Active Calories to edit your goal.
In summary, we believe that the COROS Active Calories provides a great estimation for you to track that data over time and to adjust lifestyle choices accordingly. If you have any further questions or trouble tracking this data on your watch, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.