Fitness trackers aren’t just snazzy watches and bracelets.
One of the biggest issues many have with working out and weight loss is the uncertainty that they are doing it correctly. With the YouTube videos and the weight loss blogs, it is easy to see what we are supposed to eat and how to workout. Though the type of calories consumed matter (fruits and veggies are better than donuts), it is also important to track how many calories one is burning. This is where fitness trackers come in handy.
These trackers are usually bracelets, watches, or heart rate monitors. They give information like calories burned, distance walked, heart rate and sometimes even the quality of sleep. In fact, the Pew Internet & American Life Project found that 60 percent of American adults track their diet, exercise and overall fitness, while 30 percent track other important measures of health, like sleep quality and blood sugar. Many of these trackers can sync to phone apps and you can publish your information and successes on Facebook and Twitter
Most of these trackers are upwards of $150 and one must be careful to buy the type most suited for that individual’s fitness goals. I’ve picked two that (to me) seem to be the most user friendly regardless of fitness goals.
Nike FuelBands are bracelets and they track calories, steps, “fuel” points and the time of day. Not all fitness trackers tell the time because of phones, televisions and clocks, but the more data the tracker can tell you, the better. The FuelBand lets the user decide how active to be by setting a daily fuel point goal. The band’s LED display then lights up from red and turns green showing progress throughout the day. Syncing the FuelBand to your phone app allows you to see a visual of your activity and help you understand your fitness behaviors.
Polar Heart Rate Sensor
Polar Heart Rate Sensors have three parts. They are made up of of a soft strap, heart rate sensor, and watch. The soft strap and heart rate sensor snap together (as is obvious by the above picture) and are worn around the bottom of the chest. Basically the strap sits right where one would measure a bust line. The watch is well, a watch, but in addition to the time, it also displays the workout duration, heart rate, and calories burned. Some of the more advanced and expensive trackers include GPS. The great thing about the Polar trackers is that certain ones are tailored to help users meet specific fitness goals. Some are made for triathlon trainers, some for cyclists, and others just for beginners.
If you’re in the market for a tracker, I recommend purchasing one of those. Either brand will set you back by about $150 or more depending on the Polar model you choose. Tracking calories burned is also important but always remember; you can’t out exercise a bad diet.