Raina and the kids got me a Fitbit One for my birthday. I was skeptical at first, being a dedicated MyFitnessPal user (the iPhone app is phenomenal), as fitness tracking goes. But I set it up, clipped it to my pants pocket and have grown to love it. In fact, I have developed an involuntary pocket touch, to make sure I have it clipped on.
A Fitbit tracks your steps, stairs, distance, and estimated calories burned (as well as weight, BMI and a lot of other stuff I don’t track). Best of all, the Fitbit One tracks your sleep. Based on when I know I am awake, it seems to be amazingly accurate. It automatically syncs to your computer and/or your iPhone (via bluetooth). It generates daily, weekly and monthly reports, with lots of detail. Here’s a summary of my current weekly chart.
I woke up a lot Friday night, and fell below my typical 98% sleep efficiency.
It also awards you badges for the number of stairs and steps you take in a day. This sounds sort of dumb, but is strangely effective. I don’t often have a 40,000 step day, but I often do a little extra if I’m closing in on 30,000.
I still use MyFitnessPal to track my food and my runs and walks. But I have integrated my Fitbit into my athletic nerdity. It probably does more to motivate me than anything else. I believe the distance numbers it reports are a bit high, based on how far I run each day, but it’s close enough and clearly gives you a baseline to work towards or improve on each day.
I recommend Fitbit highly, but beware of its power. Once you get a string of high step days, the idea of missing a day is really troubling.