Do you know how many calories you burn a day? Probably not? This simple fact is very helpful in your weight loss, or weight gain, or stay the same, goals. if you have no idea how many calories you burn, how do you know how many calories you should be consuming for your goals. Enter the fitness tracker. There are TONS on the market now, from Fitbit, to Nike’s version, to Under Armour, to random brands like Basis or Mio. There are a few that I like, a few that are fun, and a few that aren’t worth anything at all really. I’m going to go over a couple of these now. Let’s start with the most well known company, Nike. they have what is called The Fuelband. Now, this is AWESOME if you want to have a competition with your friends on who can move the most. The band is basically a bracelet you wear around your wrist, that looks pretty cool, and measures movement. Through this, it estimates caloric burn and steps taken. You get what are called fuel points, to compare with your friends. This is cool, because you can say, ooh, I beat so and so, and they are in better shape than me. Problem there, is that you don’t actually have to MOVE for this to work. You could sit on your bed, take your fuelband in your hand, and just shake it around, and you’ll get points. Another problem is that if you bike, you get pretty much zero fuel points. same with working out with weights. Unless you are a big runner or jumper, or basketball player, you will find it hard to really get a good idea of how active you are. Great for social networking, not so great for actual value. It’s about $150 for the new ones on the market, and you’d be better off spending a little bit more money for the other two devices I’m about to get to. The next one I want to talk about is the Under Armour Armour39 device. I do have this one as well, and it’s a strap that goes around your chest, measures your heart rate, and in turn, through some preliminary testing, estimates calories burned during your workout, and a thing they call “willpower” during your workout. I like this device better than Nike’s Fuelband for a few reasons. It measures heart rate, and you can’t really fake that, and if you are an iPhone user, it has a really cool app you can use as well. If you don’t have an iPhone, you can buy their display watch, which is really pricey for pretty much just being a display for ONE device($200). The device itself, when I bought it, was around $199, but now you can get it for $99. I think this is a great buy, if you have an iPhone. There are a few things I’m not a fan of with this device. One, I’m not a fan of chest straps. Maybe the way my body is set up makes a difference, but I feel like I’m always having to push the strap up higher onto my chest because it feels like it slips down my torso. The second, it doesn’t read calories throughout the day, unless you wear the chest strap all day and keep the program on. this device is specifically for workouts. That’s great, if you already know your basal metabolic rate(calories burned a day at rest), but if you don’t, this only kind of helps. Overall, I do think this device has some value, for people who do know a little, but need an extra helper. Finally, I’m going to get to the Basis B1 device. I do not own this yet, but I’ll be receiving it soon. It seems very promising. For around $200, you get a watch, that has sensors on the back side of it, to measure your heart rate. There is no strap to go around your chest. If the heart rate monitor on the watch is good, this solves all my problems. You get daily calorie burn, heart rate, sleep quality based on heart rate, and more. I’ll review this one after I’ve played with it for a while, but seems to be something that looks like a great thing. There is also an ANDROID app, as well as iPhone, which gives it double points for me. Stay tuned for a youtube video, or another blog post from me in the near future. These are some of your options to help you along your journey in fitness. I hope they serve you well, for whatever purpose you need.
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