Sunday, 1 December 2013

Loving the Fitbit

I want to talk fitness gadgets, particularly the Fitbit Flex.  I was toying with the idea of purchasing a Fitbit, Nike Fuelband or a Jawbone for the longest time, but when my physiotherapist prompted me to try it as part of my treatment I decided to take the plunge.  So, I thought I would share my thoughts with you about the device.

What is it?
Fitbit is like a really jazzed up pedometer that tracks your steps, your active minutes, sleep and calories burned.  It can also track your food intake similar to MyFitnessPal.

Depending on the model it may do a little more or a little less - for example, I have the Fitbit Flex which I can wear in the shower, but some of the older models are not waterproof.  The new Fitbit Force can track how many stories you have climbed in a day (kicking myself for not waiting two weeks!).  To find out more about how the technology works click here.

As many of my regular readers may know I seem to be cursed with constant injuries, so much so that I am now working with a different physiotherapist who specializes in fibromyalgia.  We are still unsure as to whether or not I have fibro; I only meet the criteria when my body is "flared up" (ie. I have a random, inexplicable long-term injury).

In a nutshell, her approach is to find out what my current abilities are for various types of movements (ex. endurance, lifting, range of motion) and then come up with a game plan to increase my abilities in areas that I am having trouble.  The main idea behind it is to determine what I am doing vs. what I am actually capable of.  Insert Fitbit here.  She wants to get a sense of how much I am moving (her hunch is possibly too much).

Love it or hate it?
I love love love it!  My physiotherapist may have created a monster in recommending this to me.  I am completely obsessed with this tool.  The device allows you to set a daily step count goal that you can change at any time.  I set mine at 13,000 per day, which, when achieved, works out to be the equivalent of roughly 9-10km.

Not only does it track your daily stats, but it emails you a weekly report with your averages for sleep, distance, calories burned and step count.  I have been using this device for six weeks and my average step count is 11,385 (a little bit shy of where I want to be).  My highest daily step count was 20,960 - which was on Thanksgiving weekend (Canadian) when we hiked Cape Split with Hugo.  So I am now hell bent on beating that record!

Would I recommend?  Most def!

I would love to hear from those of you who currently use the Fitbit or another similar device.  Do you find it helps you reach your goals?

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