My new favorite gadget, the Fitbit. My husband gave one to me and one to my daughter for Christmas. I love it. It’s a little thing but it gives lots of information about daily movement and sleep. Yup, that’s right, sleep!
In order to track your sleep you need to put the Fitbit into a soft wristband that you wear while you are sleeping. It’s very comfortable, I don’t even notice it. Once the Fitbit is in the sleeve and you are ready to shut your eyes you hold the little button on the Fitbit until a stop watch starts. When you wake up and are ready to get out of bed you push the little button again to stop the timer. I’ve decided that if I’m awake enough to remember to push the timer button then I’m ready to get out of bed. So far that has worked out pretty well. If you don’t remember to push the button you can track your sleep time manually on the website by adding the time you went to bed (or you think you went to bed) and the time you got out of bed. As long as you are wearing the wristband it is tracking your movement and thus, your sleep so once you put the start and stop times in it will graph your sleep. Below is my sleep graph from last night.
As you can see, it tells me when I went to bed (that’s when I pressed the button), how long it took to fall asleep, how many times I woke up and when that was. Pretty cool. If you hover over the pink areas (on your home page on the Fitbit website) you can see exactly what minutes you were awake and for how many minutes. I was awake and up at 3:34 and back to bed/sleep by 3:43, according to my Fitbit. I think that is probably accurate. One of my dogs had to go out and that was exactly when I went down to let her out. I checked the clock while I was in the kitchen so I could compare the time with what my Fitbit was going to say – always thinking, that’s me (I wish). It also shows that I was awake in the 5’s. I think I was, just barely. I remember waking up and thinking it seemed early. That’s all I remember. It appears that I did fall right back to sleep. Sometimes my graph will show 6 or more wake ups. I think tossing and turning shows as “awake”. The lines on the graph are very thin, meaning I was only awake for a minute or less. If I’m tossing and turning I’m certainly not in a deep/restful sleep so I would agree that I’m somewhat awake, if not totally conscious.
My first indication that the sleep thing probably worked was during Christmas vacation at my parents house. My daughter and I put our Fitbits to the test as soon as we got them so naturally we wore them to bed. We noticed that our graphs showed that we both were waking up each night at around 1 am. Funny. We were discussing how odd that was in the kitchen and my Mom over heard us and said it made sense since my Father gets up every night at around 1 am and we probably heard him. WHAAAA! That was cool.
On that same note. I don’t have to ask my son what time he goes to bed anymore. I just check my Fitbit in the morning and I can see exactly when he stormed up the stairs and started banging doors and getting ready for bed. I wake up every time. He’s not quiet.
Here are some of the other fun graphs that you can track on your Fitbit home page.
Total activity for a single day. This was a particularly good day.
It also graphs everything over time. Here is my 30 day activity graph. I haven’t had it for 30 days yet but this is my graph so far.
One of my favorite things about the Fitbit is that you can have friends. I’m somewhat competitive so this is great for me. So far my only friend is Lydia, my daughter. If you get a Fitbit friend me. It’s motivating. Believe me, if your friend has 10 flights of stairs and you have 9, you will find one more set of stairs to climb or in my case 2. I did say I was competitive.
I was way ahead before she went back to school now she’s killing me on steps day-to-day. It looks like we are close but that’s only because she lost her Fitbit for a little while. I would say it’s hard to get 10,000 steps in one day but Lydia’s first or second day back at school she log 24,000 steps. That’s to be expected and by the way, so AWESOME!
The Fitbit will also track your weight. Fitbit even has a new scale that syncs wirelessly with the Fitbit. I don’t have that and I’m not getting it. I hate weighing myself. You can set a weight goal and track your food. The Fitbit will set a calorie goal for you once you tell it what your weight goals are. I believe the Fitbit also connects to the Lose It app for the Iphone. I think it’s an upgrade in the Lose It app, so you have to pay for that feature.
I like to wear my Fitbit inside my clothes on my bra strap. It’s totally hidden. I also think it counts my steps better on my bra strap rather than my waistband or pocket. I noticed that when I play tennis, if I have it clipped to my waistband it tends to count a lot of my steps as stairs. When clipped to my bra strap it does a better job distinguishing the difference between steps and stairs.
Here’s a photo of all the stuff that comes in the Fitbit box.
The black square thing is the wristband folded. The longish USB cord is the charger. The little tiny USB plug is for wireless syncing. The thing with the silver strip down the middle is the little clip case that you put your Fitbit in so you can clip it to your clothes. And, of course, the little black rectangular thing is the Fitbit.
It holds a charge for days, maybe even a week. It takes no time to charge when it does need charging. If you know you’re going to sit down and watch tv or do some work on your computer you can plug it in and it will be ready to go when you are done.
If you put the little USD plug-in one of the ports on your computer and leave it there the Fitbit will sync when you are within 20 feet of it. This isn’t really necessary since it syncs wirelessly with your smart phone. I know it syncs with the Iphone and I think it syncs with the Android but you might want to double-check that.
Over all, I do find it motivating. I checked my steps just as I was climbing into bed the other day and realized that I was only about 60 steps short of 15,000 for that day. I clipped my Fitbit back on and did a walk through the house – success, I got my 15,000 step badge. I also have no issues going up and down the stairs now. We live in a little 1928 brick colonial style house. Every piece of this house has been converted to living space. Basement, main floor, second floor and attic. I have the opportunity to climb 3 sets of stairs, multiple times on most days. Laundry in the basement, bedrooms on the second floor and my daughter’s room and bathroom in the attic. Once Lydia goes back to school I usually just start piling stuff on the attic stairs (there’s a door) until she comes home. Not anymore. I’m happy to go all the way up now that my Fitbit tells me how great I am!
If you like gadgets and are looking for a little motivation to get moving, the Fitbit might be just the thing. Fitbit is coming out with the Fitbit Flex sometime this spring. It’s a bracelet. I think that looks really neat. The Fitbit One, that I have is $99. They have a less expensive version but it doesn’t track your sleep. I believe it is around $60. From what I’ve read I think the Fitbit Flex will be $99 and track sleep.
Here’s a link to the website: fitbit.com/home
My husband bought ours on Amazon. You can also get them at BestBuy and Brookstones. I’m sure you can get them at lots of places but those are the three that I know about. Remember, if you get one and want a friend let me know, I’ll shoot you the e-mail address that I use with my Fitbit so you can find/friend me.
Eat Well, Feel Good, Have Fun!
Oh, by the way, some of my girlfriends have started the detox/cleanse and others are starting in the next couple of weeks. I’m starting to get feed back. I’ll let you know what they all thought once I have all the info. It probably won’t be until mid February. Jeff and I are done. We finished yesterday. I loved it and am planning to do it again in the summer. I actually have extra everything so I think I’m going to keep going until I run out of the powders and supplements. I will probably do a longer one this summer. I think there is a 21 day and 30 day option.
Amy White MS HNC
I am a holistic nutrition counselor and believe real food is the true path to wellness. If you are interested in learning more about me and how I can help you, please see my story.
Facebook Fan Page!
Tagsaddiction Autoimmune Disease Bacon Beef Stew body weight breakfast Cleanse Coconut Coconut Oil collagen Cortisol cravings Dehydrator Detox Exercise Fat Fermented Apple Sauce Fiber Fruit Gluten GMO Health Insulin Interval Training ketogenic Leptin Low Carb Minerals Monsanto nightshades Obesity Organic Paleo Primal Protein Skinny on Obesity stress Sugar supplements The Skinny on Obesity thyroid Vegetables Video Vitamins Westin A Price