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My Week With A FitBit

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Fitbit Flex

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The newest fitness craze is here and you wear it on your wrist -- The FitBit. FitBit, which comes in a variety of different colors and a few different program options, is a pedometer that also helps you track your calorie intake, your weight, how you slept, how long you were active for, and how much water you drink each day. While it definitely keeps you accountable, especially if you are a competitive person, I highly doubt it will be life changing. I have been wearing my fitbit for a week now, and here's my experience thus far:

My FitBit arrived in the mail. I purchased the FitBit Flex. I had wanted the force because it also counted stairs you climb, but the product was discontinued because it left rashes on people's wrists. I was disappointed that my Flex did not come with any directions on what the product could do or how to get the most out of wearing it. It merely said how to charge it and how to get in your wrist (which I still had to get help with, as the snap is hard to do one handed). A friend of mine has the Force so I texted him detailed questions about FitBits, hoping he would have the answers to my questions like "does the FitBit know what I eat or do I have to tell it?" and "Why does it say I weigh something different than what I said?" He highly enjoyed these questions flying at him at midnight.

Here's things I learned about the Fit Bit:

You should always wear it on your non-dominant hand to get the best results. If you wear it on your dominant hand, the FitBit may think some of your hand movements are steps and count them as such.

You have to tell the FitBit what you ate, drank, and your weight. It will then adjust you goals, but it has no way of knowing without your help.

The FitBit Flex can only last a few days without needing to be charged. The product says it is waterproof, but since I never trust that something is actually waterproof, I charge mine every day while I shower.

I do enjoy having a FitBit because it keeps me accountable. When you first set up yours, you pick your daily goals: steps, calories, and active minutes. You will also set up if you would like to work on changing your weight. The FitBit then keeps track and all the sections turn green when you hit your goals. Being competitive, I will go out of my way to drink more water, walk further, or do an extra activity just to see the bars turn green. It may be a sickness, but at least it's a positive one.

I also love the sleep function. You click the "Begin Sleep" button on your app (or on your FitBit, says my friend, but I can't figure out how to do that), and the FitBit tracks how long you are awake for and then continues to count how many times you roll over during the night. When you tell your FitBit that you are done sleeping, it gives you a nightly summary.

FitBit also emails you a weekly summary, which is incredibly interesting and I find it to be helpful. While I don't work out every day like I should, I do walk a lot for my job and am surprised at how much exercise I get on a normal day without a planned workout.

Another downside to the FitBit is although it's comfortable to wear, it is uncomfortable if you are touching another person. I often hold hands with and sleep next to someone who gets scratched by the sides of the FitBit. It also leaves a battery pack shaped mark on my wrist from keeping it snug on there.

All in all, I like having a FitBit. However, if you don't want to spend $100 bucks just to track your steps there are plenty of free apps that you manually track your food and weight on that have been beneficial to me in the past.

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