I have said it many times before; I love using a wearable fitness tracker! It helps motivate me and remind me I need to get my steps in. Fitness trackers can help push you towards more activity, whether or not you believe in the ’10k steps a day rule’!
*This post contains affiliate links.*
What is a Wearable Fitness Tracker?
Wearable fitness trackers are incredibly popular. You have probably seen some of your friends and co-workers wear one at some point. They are mostly watches, but there are also necklaces and rings that are fitness trackers too. Some trackers are just plain bands that you can pair with your phone to check stats, and some come fully loaded with a interactive interface you can see your data on in real time.
What Can a Fitness Tracker Do?
Depending on the type of tracker you buy, and how much you are willing to invest, a wearable fitness tracker can do a laundry list of things like:
- Keep track of steps you take during the day.
- Track miles ran/walked during the day or during exercise.
- Track stairs climbed throughout the day.
- Keep track of sleep so you know how well you slept through the night.
- Adjust goals based on your activity in previous weeks.
- Allow apps to be installed on it for various other tracking or training programs. This opens the door for even more possibility and useful data.
The features your watch will have will depend on how much you want to spend and the type of wearable fitness tracker you want. Before purchasing something, make sure you take a look at it’s features and compare it to other trackers.
How it Can Promote an Active Lifestyle
Keeping track of data like how many steps you take during the day or week can help you set goals to be more physically active. If you are only hitting 4k steps during the average day, you can use a fitness tracker to help keep you motivated to hitting 8k-10k per day. This is not only important for weight loss, but for living a healthier lifestyle overall.
Some wearable fitness trackers can also keep track of your sleeping patterns throughout the night. This can be especially helpful for those who don’t feel they are getting adequate sleep during the night. By tracking your patterns and your routines before bed, you can create a bedtime routine that promotes a healthy amount of sleep.
A Few Recommendations
There are SO many fitness trackers on the market. Keep in mind that they all do various things, so make sure to check out the features before you make a purchase! These are a few of the trackers I have personally used in the past…
- Fitbit – I had used Fitbit brand trackers for close to 5 years before I upgraded. I used the Fitbit Ultra which has been discontinued, and then I upgraded to the Fitbit Charge, and finally a Fitbit Blaze. Each time I replaced a Fitbit I gave it to a family member. I highly recommend the Fitbit brand trackers, as you can see, I definitely like the brand!
- Lifetrak – I used a Lifetrak brand fitness watch for over five months. During that time, I only took it off to shower or when I was at Taekwondo. I really liked this watch, and I really liked the long battery life. It didn’t need to be charged every couple of days which was great, but this also means there wasn’t a lot of functions. If you want a wearable fitness tracker without a bunch of bells and whistles, this is a great option.
- BodyMedia Fit – I loved this activity tracker because since you wear it on your arm, it is out of sight. The calorie burn on it was super accurate because it is also a heart rate monitor.
- Jawbone UP – I thought this was a pretty cool looking fitness tracker! It is super simple so you can’t really tell it IS a fitness tracker. The downside is there is no info at your finger tips, but there is an app that pairs with it.
- Withings Pulse – I only had a Withings for a short time because one of the puppies thought it might taste good. The Withings is great for running. It can automatically tell when you are running and tracks data you can check out later. It was convenient to have a hands off tracker, I didn’t need to tell it when to ‘start’ or ‘stop’.
- Apple Watch – I am currently using, and loving, my apple watch. It’s got daily goals to help me keep on track, pairs with my iPhone so I can use an app to look at my data for the day, and there are tons of apps you can get to work with your Apple watch to bring your fitness goals to the next level. It has really helped to motivate me, especially with the bonus achievements and monthly goals.
Keep Things Healthy and Realistic
Walking 10k steps is not going to be easy if you are first starting out, and to be honest some people may never be able to regularly walk 10k steps.
It’s important to start out with small goals. Aim for 5k steps everyday for a week, and then set your goals a little higher for the next week. Don’t overwhelm yourself by trying to walk 10k steps if you are not used to that much activity in the day.
It’s also really important to remember that you shouldn’t become a slave to your fitness tracker. It’s fun to watch your stats and hit your goals, but if you are constantly looking at your step count and analyzing your data you could be doing more harm then good. Wearable fitness trackers shouldn’t cause you stress or anxiety if you are unable to hit the recommended daily goals. Make sure you are setting goals that are right for your body.