I really don’t want to become one of those exercise bores. The type of person that bangs on (and on) about how exercise is transforming their lives, how much they love it and how they can’t live without it.
And I’ll try my best not to … BUT … I can’t begin to tell you how much of a positive impact cycling is having on not just my life, but Dexter’s too.
I always thought I was fairly active, after all, I’m a parent right? But actually, I was leading a very sedentary lifestyle. Sat in a café writing all day and after the school run, sitting at home writing or doing Mum stuff. So in fact, I was doing nothing that raised my heart rate at all. Well, only the occasional thing 🙂 Once I’m working, I’ll look into life cover but either way it’s really important, especially as a single parent, to make sure I’m around for as long as possible.
We’re not fair weather cyclists. So far, we’ve cycled in torrential rain, freezing wind and I think the only thing that may be in issue for the next few months is if the roads are too icy – I wouldn’t risk Dexter’s safety for anything. But, honestly, bad weather doesn’t phase me. (OK, it phases me a bit.)
I wanted a way to track my new exercise regime and was desperate for a FitBit. I asked about them in Facebook groups I’m a member of and it was the one product that just stood out for everyone as being the best. I researched them on eBay but didn’t want to risk getting something that wasn’t the real deal so resigned myself to just over-guesstimating how much exercise I was doing.
And then I was asked to review one. It was like the Exercise Gods had finally aligned.
I’ve waited to write this review until I had used the Fitbit for at least a few days so that I can give you my honest opinion.
Overall, it hasn’t disappointed.
There aren’t many instructions in the box it came in but I knew the whole premise of the Fitbit was that you just need to download the app and the Flex works via Bluetooth. (I also watched a video online of how it works, which was really helpful.)
The Fitbit Flex comes with two different size wristbands, a small ‘capsule’ (which is where all the data is tracked and stored) and that just slots into the wristband … and that’s it really. Once you’ve downloaded the app onto your chosen device, you need to charge your Fitbit – this is easily done by plugging it into your laptop using the cable provided. I gave mine a couple of hours charge and three days later, it still has full battery – it’s meant to last at least five days.
Once your device is fully charged, pop it back into your wristband and you’re ready to go!
The first thing you need to do is input your personal information into your app (I used my iPhone), ie. your weight and personal goals, the Fitbit Flex does the rest. It tracks how many steps you’ve walked in any one day (10,000 a day is a good start), and because the Flex uses five white LED indicator lights to show you how your day is stacking up against your goals, you simply tap the display twice to see your progress against your daily goal – each light representing 20% of your goal. It looks a bit like Knightrider’s Kit car!
Other features on the app include:
- Mid-week or weekend challenges.
- Add your friends so that you can challenge and motivate each other.
- Add details of what you’ve eaten so it can track your calorie intake.
- Syncs your stats wirelessly.
- Monitors your sleep patterns and shows you the quality of your sleep.
- Shows you real-time progress.
The idea of Fitbit is to make fitness fun, and for someone like me, who is uber competitive, it’s ideal. I like to try and beat my previous day’s amount of steps walked, I find tracking calories (once you’re in the habit) means I’m thinking more about the food I’m putting inside my body and it’s helping me cycle further because I want to keep beating my personal goals.
You can in fact purchase a premium membership with Fitbit that gives you a much more indepth analysis of your stats but for what I need, I don’t think I’ll sign up. I would imagine this would be great if, say, you’re training for a marathon or similar challenge.
I haven’t taken the Flex off since I started wearing it three days ago and it’s comfortable enough to sleep in. It retails at £80 which is a fair investment, but if you’re looking for the best device to track, monitor and analyse your fitness journey then this is perfect.
For more information about Fitbit, check out their website.
Have any of you tried a Fitbit yet? I’d be really interested to hear how you got on!
* I was very kindly given a Fitbit to review.