Tuesday, February 2, 2016

The FitBit craze


Chances are, you probably already know someone who has joined the FitBit craze. I've been tempted to join in, but I was too cheap to buy one. I had put it on my Christmas list, even, but I'm really glad no one actually bought me one. I mean, how much would that suck as a gift?  Anyway, I was browsing around on my health insurance site a couple of weeks ago and filling out my "Healthy Living Promise" by answering a bunch  of online questions about my health and habits. In my state, you get a better rate on your monthly health insurance premium if you fill out this questionnaire each year. I hate the whole 'big brother' aspect of it all, but I'm willing to take part in it for the financial incentive on my premium cost.  Once I'd finished, I took a few minutes to check out the rewards section and realized I'd earned enough points over the last three years to qualify for a 'free' FitBit through my health insurance company. I placed the order lickety-split and waited impatiently for my gadget to arrive.

I've had it a few days now and have to say that the concept behind the gadget is pretty cool. I especially like being able to see the number of steps I've taken and the amount of sleep I've gotten on a particular day. The first few days I had it, I was at home because of the giant snowstorm and didn't really have much to show for that time. In the days that have followed, I've stuck mostly to my regular routine. I really wanted a baseline to see how much I walk and sleep on an average day instead of trying to modify it just yet. My goal mid-month is to start actively working on increasing my number of steps and gradually trying to reach various goals that I set for myself in terms of active minutes per day and number of steps and amount of sleep and amount of water.

Have you jumped on the FitBit bandwagon yet? What has been your experience with it? In what ways has it helped you or frustrated you?  I'll check back in after a few months and let you know how my FitBit journey is going.

12 comments:

  1. I asked for, and received, a FitBit Flex for Christmas 2014, and then asked for, and received, a FitBit ChargeHR for Christmas this past year. I LOVE them. One piece of advice that I picked up from Elise Blaha Cripe: don't set your step goal at 10,000 steps a day if you're normally not anywhere close to that. I'd be so discouraged because I'd be at 6,000 steps at 8:00 at night, so I'd just sit on the couch. I moved my step goal to 7,000 steps a day, so now when I'm at 6,000 or 6,500 steps when I put my daughter to bed, I walk in the living room and kitchen while I do my Facebook or Instagram scrolling instead of sitting. It's definitely helped me to be more active each day!

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  2. I've had a Fitbit for going on 5 years and before that used pedometers. I got in the habit of wearing it--but out of the habit of paying attention to it! That has changed recently, though, since joining Cathy Zielske's FIT class. Wanting to be more intentional and mindful of my daily activity, I have been doing Fitbit challenges with a friend of mine in order to reach my daily steps (usually the Goal Day challenge, which is not competitive, just to REACH your goal each day). Currently, my step goal is 7,500. That is very do-able, but I can be L-A-Z-Y if I don't pay attention. The Goal Day challenge has helped. You can play alone or with somebody. I do both. Having a pedometer or a Fitbit helps a lot to increase your activity. The Fitbit is great because you don't have to log anything. The Fitbit does it all for you, and it even sends you regular reports on how you're doing!

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  3. I jumped on the craze in the beginning of January when Amazon had the Fitbit Charge for $89.99 one week to match Best Buy's price. My daughter was going to buy me one for Christmas but I told her to wait because our company was going to do an incentive after the beginning of the year. When I asked HR about it when I spotted that price, she said grab it. The incentives wouldn't be that good. It arrived the week of January 11th. Like you, I didn't push it because I wanted a baseline and I'm still trying to get a stress fracture to heal for my foot. It really has been an eye opener on how little I move on some days. Also an eye opener on how much sleep I'm really getting. It's less than 7 hours on an average. That's not good. Now that It's February, time to put some goals into place. I'll be watching how you do with it Tiffany!

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  4. Here's my advice:
    Wear it for a week or so without changing your habits. Look at your real life average. Then Add 1000 steps to it for your goal. 1000 steps is about 10 minutes of walking. It's very do-able, this is the "park further away" types of stuff! Once you've done that consistently for a week, bump up your goal another 1000 steps, take a ten minute walk after work. Then another... Til you get to the overall goal you want.

    Make sure you use the correct settings for your dominant hand and take a look at the sleep tracker, if you feel it's incorrect, adjust your level of sensitivity.
    FIND FITBIT FRIENDS! (I'll be your fitbit friend, I'm a great friend because I am a total bum and make everyone else look good LOL)

    Join daily and weekly challenges on a regular basis! They're a good motivation.

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  5. I've had one for many years now. (Mine is the kind that hooks into my bra). I love it!!!

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  6. My daughter bought one for me and I was excited to check the same stats: steps and sleep. I forgot it on my desk at home one day and returned that evening to find I had "logged" 624 steps after I had cleared it the night before. Hmmm. Then I felt I couldn't believe a thing it said and I gave it to our daughter as she really wanted one. Did not even know of the sensitivity setting! I think a watch that monitors your steps, heart rate etc. might be a better bet for monitoring one's fitness (but also a bigger price tag).

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  7. I got a Fit Bit last July and love it! I'm an overachiever, so shoot for the 10,000 steps daily, with pretty good success, even if it means I am literally jogging around my house in the evening or running place while watching Shimelle's latest YouTube video I do it. I had such success with the steps in October I turned my attention to food intake - I have always generally been good about nutritious choices but sometimes do the dreaded, I'm tired/emotional/lazy mindless munching - cutting the majority of that out along with my steps means I am about 10 pounds lighter this year than last, without a lot of effort. I can't wait to hear how it goes for you!

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  8. I have a GARMIN - basically the same thing - different brand. I was astounded when I saw how many steps I DON'T take at work. I thought I was moving around quite often - NOPE! So now when I see the red line or hear the beep that says get up girl and get moving. I like that.
    Otherwise, it's been interesting to see how long my dog and I walk. She's lost weight, I have not..haha
    Either way if it inspires you to move more or make better choices its a win/win. Working in a doctors office has convinced more and more that moving (no matter how old you are) is good for you. Nothing bad comes from moving...it's good for you heart, lungs, muscles, bones and skin, Blood pressure, sugar and fat. So congrats to you. I think you have the right idea by checking out your baseline...you can go up from there. #goTiffanyGo

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  9. I've had a fitbit zip for over three years, and I'm still addicted. I'm currently on a streak of at least 10,000 steps or more, (no days missed), of 540 days!! My kids have flexs and I suggest you go to bitbelt.com and spend just a couple bucks on piece of mind and extra security.

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  10. Good luck with your Fitbit. I jumped on the bandwagon last year, but when I discovered it didn't log my steps on the treadmill at the gym (and that was my main walking), I stopped wearing it. I recently rediscovered where the USB linky thing was, so maybe I will try it again - it would be nice to know the number of steps I do around the house.

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