One of the few things that I asked for on my birthday (which was last week) was a Fitbit One activity tracker. Ever since products like the Nike Fuel band, Jawbone Up and Fitbit Flex started to become a popular commodity among fitness fanatics, I have been secretly wishing to get one for myself. At around $100 or more though, these wouldn’t be items that I would spontaneously purchase. And luckily, I have an awesome boyfriend who spoils me, and he happily purchased this fitness tracker for me as a gift.
When I was deciding which tracking device to ask for, I was disappointed to find that the bracelet style products did not come in a wide variety of colors or styles; specifically, they weren’t girly enough for me. Although the Nike Fuel band was eye-catching initially, its sleek style and ambiguous tracking system caused it to immediately be eliminated from my top choices. (Nike: I like your shoes and all…but giving random points and not specifically tracking any one action on your fancy-looking armband? Fail.)
So then it came down to the Jawbone Up and the Fitbit Flex. Design-wise, I was leaning more towards JU. It came in more colors, (no pink, though…) and looked more gender-neutral. I read about each item on their own respective websites and listed out the pros and cons in my head. Then, I did a search on YouTube reviews so that I could get some real user reviews. (For a video featuring a side-by-side comparison, click here.)
Long story short, in the end, I decided that I wanted neither. After reviewing the Fitbit website further (and also watching a YouTube video review,) I set my sights on the Fitbit One. The main difference between this and the Flex is that instead of wearing it as a wristband, you can clip it to your body–on your belt, inside your pocket, or for the ladies–discretely hidden on your bra. (This helps to avoid the potential problem of the masculine-looking armband models clashing with your pretty floral sundress.) When my boyfriend took me to Best Buy to get my soon-to-be birthday present, my decision was further confirmed after I saw the models of the FB Flex on display.
I happily opted for the burgundy FB One and have now been putting it to use for about five days.
This tracker has many awesome features, including:
- Tracking steps (on average, we are supposed to aim to walk at least 10,000 steps per day in order to get in a proper amount of physical activity)
- Tracking calories burned
- Tracking distance
- Tracking stairs (it supposedly logs how many flights you’ve climbed)
- Discreet vibrating alarm
- Sleep tracking (how many times you were awakened/restless during the night; how long you slept)
- Wireless syncing with your computer and/or cell phone
- Food/Exercise logging
What I Love
Wearing the Fitbit One has encouraged me to be more active so that I can rack up as many steps as I can to contribute towards my daily goal of 10,000. (Yesterday, I walked 11,000+ steps!) I do whatever I can to move more and burn more calories. Since I can see just how much activity and walking I am doing in a day, it is much easier to gauge just how sedentary or active I’m being, instead of just thinking, “Well, I was pretty busy at work today so I think I got a good amount of exercise.” Thoughts like these are what lead to frustration in most of us not reaching our fitness goals.
It has also made me more aware of my quality of sleep–which I knew wasn’t great, but at the same time, I didn’t realize just how bad it actually was. I tend to toss and turn a bit at night and the Fitbit has alerted me the past few mornings that I am restless anywhere between 19-24 times throughout my “resting” period. Yikes! Sometimes, I do have issues sleeping soundly, mostly because of anxiety. Seeing it spelled out on a graph was certainly eye-opening though. Being aware of these issues now, I have made it a point to get to bed a little earlier so that I don’t have to worry about not getting enough sleep and also, instead of spending my last few waking minutes Facebook chatting or browsing the Internet, I create a To Do list for the next day so I don’t have to worry about forgetting anything. And if I’m feeling a little too alert and think I might have trouble falling asleep, I take a supplement like Tranquil Sleep by Natural Factors, which usually works pretty well.
Not So Crazy About…
One thing that bugs me just a little bit is that I sometimes wake up and have steps logged on the Fitbit. Unless I’m sleepwalking (and I haven’t been told that I am), this number is definitely not accurate. After doing a bit of research, I found that my original assumption–that it was logging my nighttime squirming, seems to be the explanation. Since Fitbit is a movement-based appartus, this is how it determines the numbers that it puts up.
Other than that, the Fitbit One is a great product and my new favorite fitness tool! It helps me gauge how many calories I’m actually burning during my P90X workouts and also while I am running around the store at work. I recommend the Fitbit One for all those other achievement freaks out there who like to see the results of their actions recorded in concrete numbers (and charts)!
I give the Fitbit One an A because it is small and discrete, it motivates the user and the dashboard is super easy to navigate. I also give it bonus points for having a great alarm system that gently yet effectively wakes you!