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Use a Raspberry Pi to Back up Your Garmin Activity Data

(Image credit: Alex Eames)

If you use a Garmin activity tracker, you may be aware of the recent Garmin Connect outage. This left many users without access to years of fitness tracking data—from bike rides and runs to walks and hikes. Thankfully, Alex Eames, founder and owner of RasPi.TV, developed a quick solution to back up his activity data on the Raspberry Pi

By backing up the activity data on the Raspberry Pi, you can take control of your data and have archives of your hard work without relying on a third-party database. Once Garmin Connect was online again, Eames used a program called GarminExport to retrieve the data.

GarminExport was created by Swedish developer Peter Gardfjäll—and now is a better time than ever to take advantage of it. The application runs easily on the Raspberry Pi 4. You will need your Garmin Connect ID and password in order for the application to pull your data from Garmin.

According to Eames, it took about 15 minutes to archive 844 individual .fit files. None of the archived files contain any custom notes added in Garmin Connect—you may want to be mindful of that before archiving your fitness data. However, the files you extract can be used with other fitness tracking applications like Strava.

You can find GarminExport on Github to explore the code used in this project. If you want to back up your own Garmin data, check out the full blog post on RasPi.TV for complete instructions. Be sure to follow Eames on RasPi.TV for more cool Raspberry Pi projects.