I’ve always been a big fan of gadgets, I find they can be quite motivating in certain areas of my life. As mentioned in my post “Making a change for the better” I’ve been using a Fitbit One to help me get fit and healthy.
I’d been talking to C about getting one since the first Fitbit was released. I talked endlessly about trying to find one on eBay or amazon as I found them to be a little out of my price range. Just over a month ago C surprised me by telling me she’d saved up and got me one for my birthday in March. A day later she gave it to me and I’ve had it on me every day since. I think it’s my favourite gadget next to my Xbox and iPhone.
At first glance you may think its just a glorified pedometer and at £80 you make expect it to do more than it can. But I’ve been so impressed with the motivation it’s provided me with and how it can get me up and moving on days I really don’t feel like moving, you can’t really put a price on that.
This Fitbit One is a small smooth pebble like gadget that is available in two different colours and comes packaged with a charging cable, wrist strap for sleep tracking and mini cover with attached clasp. You can secure the Fitbit to either your waistband or your bra (if you wear one). I choose to attach it to the front of my bra and have had no issues with it falling off or not registering movements, I can’t comment on wearing it on your waistband as I haven’t tried this.
It’s charges incredibly quickly via the USB cable and lasts up to two weeks between charges. I would have liked a way for it to be charged via mains as I only have a netbook and sometimes it can be time consuming getting it out just to charge another device. The screen clearly displays the battery when charging but doesn’t show it when not plugged in, I thought this was odd as I wondered how I’d know if it was running low. You can check the battery level via the Fitbit dashboard online.
Setting up your Fitibit One is quite simple, I choose to download the Fitbit app on my iPhone as I knew I would only really have access to the dashboard on my phone. The Fitibit uses the iPhones Bluetooth technology to sync each time the app is opened. This then syncs to the online dashboard which offers more details and graphs which the app does not contain.
The Fitbit One tracks the amount of steps you take, floors you climb and can track how well you sleep. It displays all the amounts it tracks on the front of the Fitbit, which you can see when pressing the small button on the front of the device. You will also see a flower, which shrinks or grows to show how active or inactive you’ve been. It’s a very clear display and I’ve never had an issue reading it. Of course I try and refrain from checking it when out an about as I’d have to keep lifting it off my bra and I think this would draw unwanted attention.
I noticed when I first wore it walking to work, by the time I got to work it said I’d climbed 5 floors yet I’d only actually climbed one flight of stairs. After exploring the community forums on the Fitbit site, I found out that it registers hills of certain heights as floors. I found this to be quite motivating as I live in quite a hilly area, it’s got me climbing a lot more than I use to just to earn more badges.
Which brings me to another motivator, when you reach certain achievements like a certain amount of steps or miles covered, you earn a badge. For me this is a bit like Xbox gamer points, which always gets me striving to work harder to get the next achievement. I’m always looking at how many more steps I need to reach the next badge.
The sleep tracker is a function that I feel is not to be taken too seriously, though I do love seeing how much I moved in the night. To track your sleep you simply place the Fitbit One in the supplied wristband and hold down the button in the front of the device until a timer starts flashing on the screen, it then tracks any time you move as though you’ve woken up. When you log on to your online dashboard you can view a graph of your nights sleep and see how when and for how long you were awake. I’ve had a few issues with the Fitbit at night, one night I leant on it in my sleep and stopped it tracking and another time it came off my wrist due to how much I move in my sleep. I find the wristband to be quite comfortable and has never prevented me from getting to sleep.
A great addition to owning the Fitbit is the community that comes with it. You can discover friends on the online Fitbit forums to add to your scoreboard so that you have competition or purely for motivation. I have found having people to compete against gets me moving more. None of my Fitbit “friends” are real world friends yet most of them take the time at some point to message or motivate me.
Several fitness apps allow you to sync your Fitibt within their app, which offer you extra dimensions to those apps. A favourite couple of favourites of mine I’ve synced have been My Fitness Pal and neufit. I’m sure as the Fitbit’s popularity grows in the UK, the more apps it will integrate with.
In conclusion I can honestly say the Fitbit One has helped me get more active each day and realise how inactive I am during certain parts of the day.
The lovely people at Fitbit have kindly sent me a Fitbit Zip to giveaway to one of you lucky readers. Just enter below to be in with a chance. Sadly this giveaway is only available to UK residents.
Check out the features the Fitbit Zip offers you by clicking here.