Are FitBits Worth It?
An Opinon Write Up From Coach David de Leon
FitBits in 2015 were the craze. Wearable fitness tracking has really changed the way we track and record our workouts and it has been pretty cool to see (too bad I didn’t invent it). From FitBits to smartphones fitness tracking is now basic when it comes to new technology. But can they really help you get fit? Are they accurate? Are they sustainable? Those are just a few of the questions I am going to tackle when answering the common question of, are fitbits worth it?
Fitbit technology was introduced to help us track our daily workouts including steps walked, calories burned, and even sleep patterns. I was given one last year to see how many steps I took and miles I walked while coaching. It was pretty cool to keep track of, but the tracking didn’t last too long. More importantly, I think wearable technology has been a way to get large groups of people motivated to begin working out by using competitions in work places or in families. Anything that inspires people to move more, I am a fan of. Although many people jumped on board to these competitions, many times I found people were trying to find ways to “move” without having to actually do anything. Like most people they were trying to find the easy way out and not do the actual work. These competitions are usually short lived because after a week, people just get bored. So in many instances, just like a normal new years resolution, the fitbit would help jump start fitness, but in the end it isn’t about the fitbit anymore, but about the persons willingness to stay on track. I don’t think it is the fitbit that gets people in shape. It is their own determination to change their life. And determination is something the fitbit cannot give you.
Accuracy is another reason people start strong with the fitbit then slowly drift away. They seem to get frustrated with not knowing how accurate the readings really are. Someone wore one in class one day and after the hour was over, their fitbit said 55 calories burned. This was definitely an inaccurate reading! Sometimes this inaccuracy can discourage people, and I totally get it. Different movements sometimes show up on the fitbits and others don’t. That is just the way it is. I wouldn’t let this be a disappointment, instead I would just take what it gives me and know you may of done more, or less work than it says.
The last point about the fitbit is sustainability. Anything works as long as you can stick with it. Unfortunately, people get bored of the fitbit. They may continue to wear it, but they stop updating their dashboards, or stop looking at it in general. I’ve also noticed that in the beginning people who haven’t worked out in the past really love it but as soon as their fitness levels go up, they begin to ignore it completely.
So are Fitbits worth it? I think for newcomers to fitness, they are great. They are a form of motivation and although not always accurate, they provide a way to track what you have or haven’t done. But if you have been in the fitness game a while and your workouts include barbells, skiiergs and airdynes, the fitbit may not be for you. Because it may not record the calories you burn while on an airdyne or while you are hitting thrusters.
Do you have a fitbit? How have you stayed up with it? Did you find it to be accurate? Would you purchase another one once yours is done? Let me know and share your thoughts!