Dear Diary

Dear Diary: The Pros and Cons of Fitness Trackers

I felt my bare wrist and panicked. I was in the middle of a crowded gig and I couldn’t find my VivoFit – my stomach sank, I hadn’t realised how much I loved that little device or how much I would miss wearing it. Luckily it had got caught in the sleeve of my jacket when I’d taken it off and stuffed it into my bag so I don’t have to find out just yet but it got me thinking about how popular fitness trackers have become over the last few years.

*Disclaimer: This post written in collaboration with Legal & General. The below opinions are still my own and not influenced by this in any way.

It’s a well proffered fact that for good all round health we should be striving to walk 10,000 steps every day but how many steps do we actually take on a daily basis? I’ve been wearing my VivoFit pretty consistently since I got it (with the exception of about a month and a half over summer where I found it too hot to wear) and the numbers surprised me greatly. Living in London I definitely do a lot more walking that I would in other cities but it’s still not generally enough. I mean look at the last two weeks – far too much blue!

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That said look at the general increase in number of steps taken over the course of this year. Last month I walked much more than I had in any previous month!

 

Step trackers are a great motivational tool and what I like about the VivoFit in particular is the fact that it doesn’t just arbitrarily suggest that you hit that 10k goal but it adjusts your goal on a daily basis depending on your performance in the days preceding it. It puts you in competition with yourself and that is a great thing. I myself an hoping to push myself to hit target each day in a bid to get fitter and hopefully by the end of the year I’ll be reaching that 10k mark no problem at all. I know some fitness trackers even allow you to compete against your friends too which I can see being a great motivator for the competitive!

So should you get one? Here are some pros and cons to help you make up your mind.

Pros

  • Encourages movement and keeps you motivated – great for those with a competitive streak
  • Integration with other apps – I use mine with MyFitnessPal which means I can base my calorie intake on what I’ve burned each day
  • These days fitness trackers are much seeker and come in different colours/styles to compliment your look

Cons

  • You have to remember to wear them! It’s easy to forget to put it on again after you’ve had a shower
  • Initial cost can be a fair bit but they more than pay for themselves
  • Inaccuracy – fitness trackers aren’t of course 100% accurate but they’re better than guesstimating what you’ve done and they’ll show trends

Did you know the pedometer was invented by none other than Leonardo da Vinci? Neither did I – read some other fun facts about it in this article by Legal & General.

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