The Fitbit..motivator to a healthier lifestyle

FROM FINCH:

I discovered the original Fitbit (Ultra-the first) in January of 2012; it helped me embark on a committed path to improved fitness and most importantly, true personal accountability!

In July 2013 I bought a new Fitbit…The ONE! Only because I had to get an I-Phone for work and Fitbit has, of course, an App for that!

Being and keeping yourself motivated can be quite the challenge.  We all have responsibilities: work, family, pets and chores galore…oh and pressure (real or imagined), stress, deadlines…are you feeling anxious yet? Sorry! On  to the subject at hand and one very important thing that too often falls by the wayside.

Do you really take time for yourself? No, not really, most of you will answer; that is something we have to be mindful of daily.

On to my Fitbit One: it keeps me motivated  on so many levels:

Tracking steps: I aim for 10,000 per day (or 5 miles) sometimes i exceed it, sometimes I make it and sometimes I don’t.

Minutes active: I walk faster and with more purpose now.

My Sleep: Aim for 8 hours of restful sleep per night (this tells you how many times you wake up or stir per night).

Calories: This device has a ton of foods prepared and otherwise loaded into its database, so It’s incredibly easy to enter your food.

Water intake:Try for  64 ounces per day.

Activities: Enter everything from walking the dog, mowing, swimming, cardio, yoga etc. This means there is no excuse for not moving…each and every day. In fact, at work, rather than rely on e-mails, I meet with people face to face (better relationships and clearer communication).

I log about 5,000 steps just at work; add daily chores in and I can manage 7,500 without trying. On a gym day, 11-12,000 steps.

As I am an instant gratification girl, the Apple i-phone app enables me to enter and track periodically through the day (especially satisfying after I make it to the gym).

It also has badges you can achieve, for steps, floors etc. I just earned my 2,000 mile badge (crazy right)?

The One

My Ultra Fitbit is now in the hands of Wren, she loves it as much as I did. We are now Fitbit friends; she sees my stats and I see hers…she’s gaining on me!!

Enjoy—Finch

FROM WREN:

A couple of months ago, my amazing sister Finch gave me a Fitbit.  (Mine is an Ultra; they also come in a bracelet format and several other clip-on versions.)  She’d actually offered to get me one for my birthday a year ago, but while it sounded awesome, it also sounded overwhelming to use.  Boy, was I wrong about that!  It is super-simple and even FUN to use.  Here’s the story:

Last September (almost a year ago), I had emergency abdominal surgery, which was completely unexpected and, need I say, unplanned!  I recuperated until December when I had a second surgery.  It has been a LONG road of recovery; apparently when surgery is done (TWICE) on your abdomen it’s not a quick bounce-back.  (God has brought MANY blessings to us on this long road, but that’s another story.)  Eventually I was able to start exercising a little, and when I was at a girlfriend’s one day during the summer for our kids’ playdate, I noticed her bracelet version of Fitbit.  I asked her about it and she was so excited to share!  She told me that it records her steps and helps her meet her walking goals each day.  Well, that really whetted my appetite….how wonderful to have something that actually tracks your physical progress on a daily basis.  I talked to Finch about her Fitbit and started researching them…and then Finch emailed me and told me she was sending me one!  Woo hoo!

Here is what I discovered about my new little fitness trainer:

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  • It tracks my steps, miles walked, stairs climbed and calories burned each day
  • It has a clock
  • It gives you little encouraging messages like:  “U ROCK,”  “I  LIKE U,”  “HUG ME” (that one comes up when you’ve been sitting and it thinks you need to get moving),  “READY,” “BONJOUR!” and others I haven’t discovered yet to keep you moving and smiling

Those are all things the Fitbit does without your doing anything besides wearing it and keeping it charged (once weekly via my PC and its charging cable/cradle).  However, you can track your fitness habits even more extensively with your online dashboard at fitbit.com.  There, you can enter your name and weight and can manually enter information to track your:

  • Sleep habits (how many times did you get up, how many hours did you actually sleep)
  • How many calories you take in (by recording what you’re eating) and how many calories you’re burning
  • Your blood pressure, heart rates and glucose
  • Journal entries for each day

I can’t tell you just how much I LOVE my Fitbit!  It is the best little silent fitness trainer.  I have loved seeing how I’ve been able to progress, even if it’s only been slightly, over the months I’ve been using it.  It encourages me to do just a little more when I can see how much I have exercised in a day, even if it’s only going up and down the stairs a few more times or bouncing on my exercise ball or our mini-trampoline.  (By the way, you wear the FitBit; it hooks onto the waistband of your pants, a pocket, or on your bra (if you’re female) or shirt somewhere—-any of these still enables the FitBit to track your steps.)

So, my personal fitness trainer Fitbit has revolutionized the way I think about exercising….and it’s helped me discover new ways to sneak in some extras:

  • Walking up and down the stairs a few extra times
  • Parking further away from the door so I can get in a little extra walking
  • Choosing a table at Jackson’s coop on Tuesday that causes me to have to walk further to classes and the lunchroom
  • Putting in a little time at the end of the day on the exercise ball

Like I said, I am still recovering from those winter surgeries so my stamina is not what I’d like it to be; I can do at this point about 2/3 of what I could accomplish in a day, pre-surgeries.  However, 2/3 is actually pretty amazing, considering where I was earlier in the spring!  I have come a long way.  And, with the addition of my darling little Fitbit (I love that it’s decorative as well as functional), I have noticed in the past couple of weeks that my core has actually been getting a lot stronger.  That is huge for me, since my core is the area where all the surgery was done!  I haven’t started losing weight (that I can tell) and I’m not yet the proud possessor of a six-pack…..but I am building core strength little by little.  I couldn’t be happier about that!

Check out FitBit for yourself!  I’m sure you can find it in stores but since I’m still not doing that much shopping, I can’t tell you where.  But!  I know it’s available online at Walmart.com, Target.com and Amazon.

What are you doing to live a healthy lifestyle?  Are there any changes you’ve made lately?

Enjoy!  –Wren

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94 thoughts on “The Fitbit..motivator to a healthier lifestyle

  1. Pingback: Blogelina’s Commentathon – Group #3 | Blogelina

    • Sheila, it is TRULY wonderful! Since I’m still recovering from surgery, it’s taking me quite awhile to get back to full strength. But the Fitbit is just a sweet motivator. All I am doing most days is walking and taking the stairs, but I’m being encouraged to continue!

      Have a great day! 🙂 Wren

  2. I love this, Finch and Wren! I never wanted a Fitbit before, but now I want to run right out and get one. I never knew all of the things they could do. I can see how it would be an excellent motivator. Thanks for sharing. ~ Bobbi

  3. This seems to be just the motivator I need! I don’t have an exercise routine and don’t really exercise at all. I have 3 young daughters who would also benefit from this. Thanks for all the information.

    • Thanks, Stephanie! It IS wonderful to use along with children. I’ve taken our son (along with my husband) on walks or done the exercise ball while he skateboards. Just a great way to incorporate fun fitness activities!

      :)Wren

  4. This is the third time I’ve heard someone (or someones) sing the praises of FitBit. I’m starting to think this is a sign and maybe I should consider looking into buying one for myself.

    • Jana, they are seriously affordable and SO fun. Yesterday morning when I got out of bed, I had a new message: “Climb it!”

      I’m loving mine, still….and I haven’t explored all its possibilities!

      :)Wren

  5. A friend told me about this a few months ago. I had never heard of it. Of course, it went in one ear and out the other in the course of the day. Thanks for the reminder! Putting this on my Christmas list!!

  6. I’ve been eyeing the FitBit for a while now. I am much more of a “natural daily movement” person rather then a “gym person” when it comes to exercise. You know, chase around the baby, mow the lawn, that sort of thing. All my gym memberships start out as hopeful but end up severely under utilized. It would be nice to track what I am actually doing each day and create goals based on that. Thank you for the wonderful review and I’m adding it to my wishlist 🙂

    • Oh Andrea, I hope you can get one! I’m a homeschooling mom and the whole gym thing hasn’t worked for me either….but just adding steps to my daily life and work does!

      Blessings! :)Wren

  7. You know what has finally gotten me interested in this thing you two keep talking about? The cheesy encouraging messages. I would use it just to get the messages that it is happy with me! Holy moly, what does that mean about my propensity to want to please people….not just please people, please a DEVICE! Okay, get me a fitbit AND some counseling, please!!! I’m not kidding, I’m going to ask my hubby for one for Christmas!
    Love,
    Shan

    • You are not alone! This is the first thing that I loved about it….especially in the beginning when I wasn’t logging that many steps!

      This morning I got: “Hug Me,” “Burn it,” and “Hi.” I didn’t know it said hi!

      :)Wren

  8. Welp, I’m sold…I will be getting one today. And you’re right we don’t take time for ourselves. I know I don’t it’s all about work/biz/work/biz. I’m in the process of losing weight and this will be a great addictive to keep me motivated and track my progress.

    Thanks so much not only did you educate me because I never heard of this device but now I can hold myself accountable and stay on track.

    Kimberly Ann Hawes
    http://over40andkillingit.wordpress.com/2013/09/09/lets-get-it-achieve-the-over-40-and-killing-it-lifestyle-today/

  9. I have thought about a Fitbit for years now. I’ve always been interested by the online/phone stuff and I think that would be great. But I always wondered as I have the ability to lose pedometers. I now see the Flex (bracelet) one is out and I might finally have found a Fitbit I truly can use and like! Good reviews!

    • Thank you, P.J.! I actually almost lost mine once…and panicked…but it was actually safe and sound! And that’s only once in months. The bracelet Fitbit IS extremely cool, though!

      Thanks for stopping by!
      :)Wren

  10. Finch n Wren. Great post on the Fitbit. My husband and I looked at something a while back, might have been the Fitbit. One issue we had with it was that it determined the distance you walked by the changes in your GPS location. Do you know if the Fitbit does that? If so, do you know if you can turn it off when you get in the car, so that it isn’t measuring your driving time as walking time?

    I really like the idea of it. I definitely need motivation. I struggle on a daily basis with motivation to exercise more. More days than not, I simply don’t make myself do it.

    I would definitely be interested in checking this out further.

    Thanks so much for sharing. Have a great day!

  11. What a neat little device! I have been eating more vegetables lately. I need to start exercising. Maybe I can reward myself with one of these babies if I do!

  12. I do not have a fitness routine…other than my toddler. I know that I need to start exercising, but I just hate it so much. I’ve put on quite a bit of weight since leaving work during my pregnancy…not working makes a huge difference in your activeness. I might have to check out the FitBit and see if I can lose a few of these extra pounds.

  13. Sounds great that you have this neat way of keeping track of your fitness. I am very unfit. I am using my baby as my excuse! But I guess I shouldn’t because I can still walk around, every step counts, hey…
    Thanks for your comment on my blog, Wren. When you have to wait for your baby he’s extra special. 🙂

    • Heather, that is so true! He is such a big boy of 11 now that I sometimes forget all we had to endure to get him…but the simple act of painting my nails the other day (I never painted them while I was pregnant, just being a bit fearful that I could do something to mess things up) reminded me of those months of pregnancy and finally holding our precious baby in my arms. What a gift!

      Your family photo is darling, btw!
      :)Wren

  14. I’ve looked at FItbits a few times, but not yet made the jump to get one. A little bit of extra motivation to look after myself would be good. Thanks for sharing your experiences!

  15. This is the first time I’ve heard of the fitbit. Pretty cool! These days I’m working on portion size and increasing my daily activity level. This little tool would probably help. Thanks for reviewing it for us.

    • Dawn, thank you SO much! And thanks for the follow back on Pinterest. I loved your blog too—what a great idea for one. It’s been so fun blogging with MY sister as well.

      Blessings to you!

  16. This sounds like a great product! I keep a similar list of goals for myself but don’t currently have anything like this to help me track them…

  17. I need something! I went and googled it, and it sounds great. I don’t have an Iphone or an android phone–and my ipad is an ipad 2 (needs to be an ipad3), but it says it can sync to my computer. So that’s fine with me. Maybe I’ll ask my husband’s family to go in together on one for me for Christmas!

  18. I have a friend who has a FitBit, and she loves it! I think I might have to get one myself. 🙂 I’m trying to live a healthier lifestyle by eating better, but I just don’t like working out. I think the FitBit would be a great motivation for me.Thank you for posting! 🙂

    • Thanks for commenting, Ashley! It has done just for me what you’re hoping for….I’ve been trying to eat well and exercise for ages, all to a fine start and then a sudden stop. The Fitbit has enabled me to actually start a program and continue it. Let us know how it works for you, if you decide to go for it! 🙂

  19. This is the second time within a month this has come to my attention, so maybe I should take heed. I teach wellness classes at our community college and I wish I could talk my department chair into getting these, or least one for me! This is so much better than just having a pedometer.

    • Well–that is a GREAT idea! Maybe you could be a test case for it and it could be college faculty-wide! That might be something HR folks would be interested as well.

      Let us know, Sandra, if you’re able to get one!

  20. I’ll admit it: I’d never heard of a fitbit, but I can see how one would be useful. I try to exercise every day, but I would love to know how much exercise I get at work and if it varies by week. Probably something to look into.

  21. This is a great tool for keeping you on track and accountable! I had something similar called Body Media. I remember taking those extra steps and working out a little harder to see the difference it would make. Looks like I may have to look into another fitness tool!(:

    • You know, Kelly, you are right! I’ve never heard of Body Media but it sounds like a similar principle. Last night before bed I noticed I was about to hit a new mile marker….and I had to go downstairs again anyway. Off I went…and I got to a new mile, which really made me happy.

      I’ve loved it b/c it really, sweetly, makes me want to get more fitness in! 🙂

  22. Great review! I have really been considering getting a fitbit as I have a Heart Rate Monitor to track my workouts, but I want something that would actually calcuate my daily activity. I’m going to look into purchasing one soon!

  23. Neat little device! I used my fitness pal for a while but got out of the habit. Now I just try to be more conscience of what I eat and make sure I am getting enough meals. Skipping breakfast is a bit problem for me. I am also trying to put exercise, even if just a few minutes of yoga into my schedule.

  24. Although I only have a regular pedometer, even that motivates me to try to make my 10000 steps. This fitbit sounds even better! I like how it can attach to your bra strap. Good luck to both of you to reaching your fitness goals and, Wren, best wishes to getting all your strength back!

  25. I’ve heard of FitBit before and everything was very positive. So much so that I almost bought myself one. Unfortunately, I know me and I know I probably would forget about it somewhere. It’s a really great idea though and maybe some day I’ll pick one up for myself and actually use it! Best of luck to you in reaching your fitness goals. You can do it! Just keep telling yourself that. 🙂

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