It’s been over a week since I got an activity tracker – so I thought I’d write a little update/review.
Following on from the popularity of the many smartphone apps, Trackers seem to be the latest trend (fad?) and there are soooo many to choose from. Even Apple is looking to launch one apparently. Reading the reviews/promo you would think that it was something that everyone just has to have – I’m reserving my judgement……
The main choice of design is either built into a wristband or a small widget that can be fitted into a wrist-band, clip, keyring etc.
In the end I opted for one of the widget style ones that has various wearable options but I’ve just been putting it in my pocket as I don’t want another thing on my wrist and scared it would fall out the clip it came with. It uses a standard mini-usb charger (battery lasts about a week), measures altitude climbed and can also measure your heart-rate. It syncs the data to a smart-phone app (android & ios) as well as a web-site account.
The first thing that surprised me was seeing just how in-active I am at work!
On a “lazy” day – work & home – I’m tracking an average 3000 steps.
On a “medium” day – work, gym & home – I track an average 5000 steps.
On an “active” day – work, cardio class & home – I track roughly 8000 steps.
Considering they say you should try for 10,000 – I’m way off!! However, now I know – I seem to be trying to increase my numbers by finding any excuse to get up – coffee/water breaks, going to see other departments rather than email them, going for a walk at lunch and using the stairs more often.
I wouldn’t say that I’m competitive with myself enough to want to beat my results each day, but I do like the fact that it encourages me to do a bit more the following day if I see I’ve been a bit lazy.
I also really like the pulse monitor – you just press your finger to a reader on the back. I’m not sure if I trust it 100% but seems fairly comparable to the rate on my Blood Pressure monitor and the cardio machines in the gym. Having it handy means I can measure it at any time – home, work or cardio class etc. and I can get a clear picture of how rested/stressed I am and make sure I’m exercising at the most optimal rate and not overdoing it (which is important with my BP!).
If you wear it while you sleep it also monitors your sleep quality. I assume this is based on the amount of movement/length of time motionless. Being someone that doesn’t sleep well – again it seemed to confirm my feelings – averaging 6 hours of sleep, waking up 2-3 times a night, with just 1-2 hours of deep sleep. I seriously need to do something about that.
Overall I’m quite liking having it – even my work colleagues have been asking “how many are you up to?”
My only slight annoyances with it are the fact that your targets for sleep and steps are set at 8 hours and 10,000 steps – it would be nice to set your own target and the fact that it is so small, I have forgotten to transfer it a couple of times when getting changed.
I’m going to keep using it over the next few weeks and will try an incorporate the figures into my stats – it seems like a good motivator but let’s see for how long.