Friday, 15 November 2013

The wonders of the Fitbit One

I had been carrying a pedometer for a few years but to be honest I didn't really bother to much with the readings.  I tried to do my 5000 steps a day but didn't really put that much effort into it.  It was good however, to see on a day hike how many steps I had taken compared to a 'normal' day.  It had a major flaw in that it had a habit of resetting it self to zero, usually on a long walk.

The Fitbit One
I stumbled upon the Fitbit One back in February and it looked like something I could use.  I'm overweight and frankly needed a shove to move my arse.  For the first month and a half I didn't do anything different to normal, this was a conscious decision to give a baseline of what I normally did.

At the same time I started to use Myfitnessplan, which is a fairly simple free website that tracks calories.  It's database is very extensive and it's rare that I find something that's not already in there.  It's main advantage is that it syncs automatically with the Fitbit data.

The Fitbit App
The Fitbit syncs via Bluetooth to either your PC/Laptop and/or via an app on a smart phone.  The website and app come with a variety of data and graphs to visualise the masses of info collected.  This is where the Fitbit excels in my opinion.  It is so easy to see what you are doing, how many calories are being burnt, being eaten, steps, distances and even number of stairs climbed.

The desktop screen
The ease in which the info is displayed makes is obvious when you don't do something, adding to the inbuilt competition it generates in your mind.  This is assisted by a couple of features, one being the use of 'friends' to compete against (league tables concentrate the mind!) and the use of awards.  The awards are a little gimmicky but I do like beating the old records and getting a new one!

The main negative I have had so far has been the lack of spare bits available on the Fitbit UK website.  I lost the charger cable for a few days and the thought (and cost) of buying a new Fitbit or importing a charger cable wasn't too desirable.

Calories burnt so far today...I'm on nights not prowling the neighbour hood at 3am...
The Fitbit can be carried in a wallet, purse or on it's own belt clip.  I generally just put it in my wallet.  The belt clip can be useful but I prefer not to have it on display.  The Fitbit also has a sleep monitor function, now this is pretty basic, it basically records the movement through the night.  When it's not moving, you are asleep, basic but can show a certain amount of restlessness through the night.

Some of the badges awarded
Overall, the Fitbit One has been reliable, lightweight, accurate and a great motivation to get out more.  I have averaged over 12,000 steps a day for the last few months and unsurprisingly the weight has been dropping off.  Highly recommended.

Disclaimer - I bought this with my own money.

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