Strava calculated Calorie Values replaced?

Just came back from cycling and uploaded the activity from garmin to strava. The calorie value was rather low for the kind of activity. I checked Garmin. 1:1 the same value in strava and garmin. 

I then checked some activites from the past, and recognized that the strava calculated calorie values in my account have been replaced with the values from garmin. I did not check my complete activity history, but I quickly checked the last 10 activities. Instead of the Strava calculated value (which is always different from garmin), I now see the exact values from Garmin.

Any ideas what happend? 

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  • I've found the same. Strava was always higher or Garmin was lower but now all calorie counts are the same. Even with previous runs.

    Have Strava started to use heart rate data?

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  • I’ve just noticed exactly the same thing. I rode yesterday and today and noticed that the calories value in Strava and Garmin Connect are identical.

    When I go back through previous rides in Strava, I see the original calories value for a few seconds then it’s replaced by the same number as is in the activity in Garmin Connect.

    All I can think is that Strava have amended the algorithm that calculates its calories value.

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  • Same here. I've found that the strava calories has been more accurate than the garmin calculation. Using a powermeter on the bike.

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  • Seriously, any word on this?

    Strava randomly decided to start pulling in the raw calorie count from my Wahoo ELEMNT instead of using Strava's algorithm as it has for the past two years. I'm not happy about this because I found Strava's calculation to be far more accurate.

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  • They have started over-riding with the garmin values, per this article:

     

    https://support.strava.com/hc/en-us/articles/360007211932-Calories-from-FIT-and-TCX-Files

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  • No word about it in any official strava communication. I already contacted strava support. No feedback at all. It’s a really bad experience. It’s basically up to them to change their product. But there a lot of (paying) customers who count on reliable data and services. Changing a vital part of it without any further notice is just unacceptable. 

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  • Thanks for sharing the link, Eric.

    Please reference the article for more information on calories here.  

    Feel free to reach out with any questions! 

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  • Agree with Marc on this one. Have sent feedback as well to the support. Not happy at all and have decided to stop paying for this now.

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  • The article says “...for activities from July 2018 or later...”

    This is not true. All my past activities have been changed! Are you going to fix this? 

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  • Can you go back to calculating calories independently on Strava?

    Garmin does a really poor job. For instance, on Garmin, if I run for 5+ hours up a mountain on rugged trails for 30 km, Garmin (and now Strava) reports 1589 calories burned. But if I run on the flat for 20 km, Garmin reports the same number of calories burned. Clearly the former is a much greater effort... makes no sense. 

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  • Could it be possible to choose whether we want to continue using the Strava algorithm?
    I am really not happy with Polar estimation.

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  • My conversation with Strava support:

    Me: Is there a way to get the old calorie calculations back? Strava's algorithm was always much more accurate than the numbers recorded on my Wahoo ELEMNT, but now as the past month Strava just pulls in those raw numbers from my bike computer. I much, much, much prefer the old calculation.

    Support: Thank you for contacting Strava. We recently started using calories from the original platform the activity was recorded on. Sorry this is not working well for you.

    I am passing your feedback to our Director of Integrations. I hope this helps. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to ask.

    Me: Thanks. The other problem is consistency, because different devices and sources calculate differently as well. At least when Strava did the calculations it didn’t matter if my Wahoo numbers were double my Zwift numbers — they were both Strava normalized. It was the only way to fairly compare different sources.

    At the very least it should be an option in the settings on whether we want to use Strava calculations or raw data calculations, as I’m sure some people do prefer it one way or the other.

    I will say on the forums and groups I’m a part of, this is wildly unpopular as it now stands.

    Support: Thanks for the feedback Sean - we are weighing our options and potential changes. I will keep your request open until I have an update.

    Thank you for your patience.

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  • Please let us choose if we want Strava to calculate calories- or just go back to doing it. So much more rational and consistent than other devices.

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  • I get the same answers and an additional answer - you can go in and do a survey in regads to how it differs

    Complete this survey to leave us feedback about Strava's calorie calculations. 

     

    • Hello,

      Thank you for your patience. We are still working through calorie values differing from their previous calculations and now using the value from the original platform. 

      For more information, we've updated our Knowledge Base article with the latest.

      If you have any questions at this time, please respond to this message. 

      Best,
      Sean
      Strava Support Team

    • your link is to a slack page. I dont have a @strava email.

      this calorie calculation issue is, atleast for me, one major reason for stop paying for your service,

    • My apologies - here is the correct link:

      https://support.strava.com/hc/en-us/articles/216917097-Calorie-Calculation

      Please let me know if I can answer any other questions.

      Best,
      Sean
      Strava Support Team
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  • Got the same answers as Sean.

    Strava always pointed out how this was calculated as a mayor benefit for their product. What happened to this proposition?

    Using Strava with different devices since many years was a huge benefit for me. The calculation was device agnostic. This is gone now. I run with strava app on the Apple Watch and cycle with Garmin Edge. Tomorrow maybe i use Garmin Forerunner...etc.

    This wasn’t a good decision...

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  • This was implemented very poorly. If you calculate calories based on Strava's estimated power values, Strava can produce a variance up to 50% versus what it recorded. I use an app connected to Strava to help manage my calorie intake, now I have to recalculate and adjust every value uploaded by Strava. Pretty lame.

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  • I've found Strava calorie calculations to be much lower on my device than my watch which is a heart rate monitor too? 80 mile bike ride shows 2200 calories yet strava calculates 1100? why is there such a big difference? I've checked my personal stats are the same on device & strava?

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  • This also impacts different bikes being used. If you have a light road bike as default, yet update to use a heavier mtb for an activity it used to add more calories due to extra effort on a heavier bike. It does not do this anymore and this is sub par

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  • Personally I am happy with this as Garmin calories that come from HR have always been more accurate than from Strava as long as you set up your HR zones correctly etc.

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  • To force Strava to use its own algorithm to calculate calories on an imported activity, simply edit the .TCX file from the other app and remove the calorie count before importing it to Strava. Eg. 

    Replace:- 

    <?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?><TrainingCenterDatabase xmlns="http://www.garmin.com/xmlschemas/TrainingCenterDatabase/v2"><Activities><Activity Sport="Other"><Id>2019-02-26T14:51:53.000Z</Id><Lap StartTime="2019-02-26T14:51:53.000Z"><TotalTimeSeconds>7115.0</TotalTimeSeconds><DistanceMeters>7946.5</DistanceMeters><MaximumSpeed>2.2777777247958713</MaximumSpeed><Calories>1234</Calories><AverageHeartRateBpm><Value>94</Value>......


    With:- 

    <?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?><TrainingCenterDatabase xmlns="http://www.garmin.com/xmlschemas/TrainingCenterDatabase/v2"><Activities><Activity Sport="Other"><Id>2019-02-26T14:51:53.000Z</Id><Lap StartTime="2019-02-26T14:51:53.000Z"><TotalTimeSeconds>7115.0</TotalTimeSeconds><DistanceMeters>7946.5</DistanceMeters><MaximumSpeed>2.2777777247958713</MaximumSpeed><Calories></Calories><AverageHeartRateBpm><Value>94</Value>

    and then import the file. 

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