One of the best and easiest ways to get more active is to get an activity tracker. You basically wear the tracker all the time and find out a semi accurate number of how active you are. There are many on the market and all of them do a multitude of things but when I did my research on which one I wanted to get, I chose a Garmin VivoFit for several reasons. Full disclosure, I’m not affiliated with Garmin and they aren’t paying me to talk about their product. I did the research on the fit on my own and purchased it a little over a month ago at Wal-Mart.com for 79.99 with a 2 year warranty. Mine looks like this!
You can buy extra bands in a ton of colors and designs but so far, I’ve just got my teal green one.
So the pros.
I love that its also a watch. I used to never wear a watch and now that I have this, I don’t mind so much. I also love that it’s a Garmin and Garmin is a local company here in Kansas City so supporting the home team is never a bad thing. I like that it is like a watch that it never needs to be charged. I just wear it all the time and don’t need to plug it into my computer to have it do it’s job. When it does run down, I replace a small watch battery.
Another thing I love about my VivoFit is it’s waterproof up to five meters, so you can swim with it and the newer ones come with a protective band that helps it stay on. I found out a lot of the older designs do not have that item. So far, it’s worked very well. I’ve never had it pop off my wrist unless I take it off.
Having had a fitness tracker from Phillips via Weight Watchers. I was rather excited to see what this could do since you can sync it via your computer with the Garmin Connect app. It also works with the MyFitnessPal App so you can track your movement and track water, food and weight in one app. It does almost everything the Weight Watchers App does, without the monthly fees which helps me in saving money.
I do like that it has a sleep feature that monitors your movement while you sleep and there is a pulse application so track your heart rate but only if you have the Garmin pulse monitor that goes around your chest. I do not have this so I don’t use. it. It tracks your steps, helps keep a goal for you and changes based on your activity the day before, how many miles you’ve walked, how many calories you’ve burned and of course, time and date.
Now, there’s always going to be some cons and the Vivofit is not without its cons. As you can see in my picture, the red bar and dashes are to let you know you’ve been sitting for longer than an hour. The long dash means I’ve been sitting for more than an hour and every tick after that is 15 minute increments. This is a nice feature but that’s all it does. There are not beeps, no bells, no whistles, no buzzes, no vibrations to let you know “Hey, get up.” This doesn’t truly bother me but I know some people like some kind of indication.
The other thing that I’ve found that is not exactly good is that while it’s a pretty good activity tracker, I found out it doesn’t have an altimeter so your steps are not totally accurate. For example, if I’m walking on the treadmill and keep my hand on the heart monitor, it doesn’t pick up my movement unless I move my arm. If I’m walking around the grocery store, my hand needs to be at my side to monitor my steps, not holding on to the cart. It also can at times over count steps due to misjudging your stride. I haven’t heard of similar problems with other trackers but I have found this one to be a little problem.
One thing I would like to change is there is no light. The watch is not backlit at all. So you are in bed, ready to sleep and go to push the Fit to “sleep” mode and have to turn over, turn the light back on and then do it as you can’t see it. It would be nice to have a small light
All in all, I do like it and it has made me more active, working on trying to move more just to get my step number up and over my goal. So hopefully there will be some improvements in the new designs and I hope you find a tracker that works for you!