Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Fitbit Zip Review and Cleaning Things Up

I got some money for Christmas and decided to treat myself to something I’ve had an eye on for a while: a Fitbit. I know several people “in real life” who have a Fitbit and love it. And I have seen numerous reviews/mentions on the Internet, and I was very curious as my experiences with “tracking devices” haven’t been all that good.

Years ago, I got a free pedometer through work. It was a pain to set up, didn’t work well, and was huge and ugly. Then I got an old model of the Garmin Forerunner. It was a great deal, but hubby made fun of me every time I wore it as it looked like it came straight from 1988. Plus, it took forever to get a satellite, and I sometime had to stand around for what seemed like forever before a run or hike.

The Fitbit is the opposite of my previous experiences: it’s tiny, cute (I got a pink one!), and was incredibly easy to set up.

By simply tapping your Fitbit, you can easily scroll through the numbers it keeps track of (time, steps taken today, miles traveled, calories burned, happy/not so happy face, depending on how active you are). I love how easy it is!

The Fitbit comes with an online component that automatically updates when you are within range of your computer (you can also synch it with your smart phone, iPad, etc.). The online dashboard shows you various numbers:
  • steps taken today
  • miles traveled today
  • calories burned
  • active score (the number starts at 0 every morning and goes up the more active you are)
There is also a pie chart that shows the time you were:
  • sedentary
  • lightly active
  • fairly active
  • very active
Seeing how active (or NOT active) you are throughout the day is really motivating!

You can also set up a food journal or set weight loss goals, but I haven’t done any of those.

What I Love About My Fitbit
  • Super easy to set up
  • Super easy to wear – you don’t know it’s there
  • Seeing how many steps I have taken really motivates me to make it to at least 10,000 steps every day. I often walk another 2,000 steps at the end of the day, and I know I wouldn’t add the extra activity if I didn’t see the numbers.
  • My home is getting more organized as I am finding ways to walk more! The first couple nights hubby asked me why I was going up and down the stairs so many times, each time carrying only one item….
Things About My Fibit That Can Be a Bit Frustrating
  • The Fitbit only tracks steps. So if I do a barre class or do a  weight lifting session, it hardly adds any steps and looks on my activity graph pretty much the same as if I sat on the couch. It can be frustrating to see almost “no activity” during times I know I worked out hard! But once you remind yourself that the Fitbit keeps only track of steps, it all makes sense…
I am really glad I got the Fitbit. It’s a great tool to keep track of my steps, and by monitoring them, I often motivate myself to walk some more at the end of the day.

Questions: Do you keep track of your miles/steps? Do you keep track of your daily activity in another way? I used to input my workouts into Daily Mile but stopped in the fall. I really liked seeing all my workouts at the end of the week; I may get back to it! Do you keep a food journal? I don’t at the moment and have only done it once for a short time.

In Other News
I am currently “cleaning up” my eating a bit by focusing on whole foods and eliminating coffee, alcohol, and added sugar. Cutting out coffee was very tough and showed me clearly that I had been drinking way too much again. I am looking forward to eating mainly plants for the next 14 days and plan on writing a recap in a few weeks.

Be well,