I used to perform my physical with a friend every morning and evening. The distances covered during the jogging exercises were unmeasured, and the coverage was generally based on personal moods.
The most disappointing bit was finding myself alone pacing down the lane when I had already wasted half an hour waiting for my partner to turn up.
My dependence on a friend to motivate my physical exercises was cut short by the introduction of fitness trackers. And I loved it if I’m being honest.
We all crave convenience, control, and motivation. And that applies even when it comes to physical fitness. So I asked myself do I need a Fitness tracker?
Today, I no longer depend on a friend to psych me up. I own and use a fitness tracker, which I’ve found to be quite handy as it helps me to know my calorie consumption, footsteps, running distance, and other metrics.
But are fitness trackers really worth it? Or is it just a piece of invention that deserves nothing but a second thought?
How do They Work
In order to learn about the effectiveness of fitness trackers, let’s look at how they work in the infographic below:
Are Fitness Trackers Really Worth it Today?
To answer this question, we need to look at the function of a fitness tracker, its benefits, as well as the disadvantage commonly linked to them.
Functions of a Fitness Tracker
To know whether a fitness tracker is worth the money or not, it’s important to look at what it can do, determine for yourself if you need one, and then buy the device if you strongly believe it’s necessary.
Here’s what most fitness trackers can do:
1. Count Steps
Counting steps is the most basic function of a fitness tracker. In fact, this is what they used to do when they first appeared and they still do so today.
The fitness trackers count the steps you take when jogging, running, and walking. These measurements will enable you to set workout targets and achieve pre-specified number of steps on a daily basis.
2. Tracking Body Position
Some fitness trackers have gyroscope technology that traces your body positions. Simply put, the feature determines whether you’re sitting, standing or sleeping.
Then it determines how much time you’ve spent relaxing or exercising. The data you get will help you to set reasonable and actionable fitness goals with ease.
3. Monitoring Your Heart Rate
There’s a reason why all fitness brand try to include a heart rate monitor in their fitness trackers.
Some like Letscom, which fall in our list of waterproof fitness trackers, almost got it right. The likes of Garmin and Fitbit are ahead of the game as far as HR technology is concerned.
And the reason is this:
Heart monitors help you to know if your pulse rate is too high or normal.
The data displayed on the on-dashboard helps you to determine whether your heart rate is in the normal zone or otherwise. And this helps you to adjust accordingly for the sake of your health.
4. Count the Calories Burnt
You certainly want to burn the calories to stay hale and hearty. And a fitness tracker can help you to know just how much calories you’re burning during every exercise.
You can use the calories data to determine which exercise you can do next so you can burn as much calories as you possibly can.
5. Determining the Altitude
Climbing mountains and running up the stairs is great for cardio and other fitness activities.
A fitness tracker goes a long way to measure the heights covered during the exercises and even help you set altitude targets.
6. Monitoring Your Sleep
Sleeping is a vital part that completes the cycle of successful body fitness.
You can now understand how well you sleep by using a fitness tracker like Fitbit Charge 3, which is one of the top Fitbit for men this year.
These devices can detect your motions when lying down and determine whether you’re light asleep, awake, or deep asleep.
The Benefits of Fitness Trackers
|Helps track and monitor physical activity.||Cost of purchase and maintenance.|
|Motivates users to achieve fitness goals.||Limited accuracy, especially for certain activities.|
|Monitors heart rate, sleep patterns, and more.||Privacy concerns with data collection.|
|Provides data and insights to improve workouts.||Battery life and charging frequency.|
|Convenient and easy to wear throughout the day.||Can be less comfortable or stylish for some users.|
Fitness trackers have other functions that do not necessarily relate to body fitness.
You can take advantage of these features and get the most out of them when necessary.
They’re as follows:
1. Fitness Trackers Motivate You to Workout
You most certainly want to have a specific goal during fitness exercises rather than have a vague goal of being healthier.
A fitness tracker will motivate you to hit the targets and this makes exercises more rewarding, particularly because of the record of your past workout.
2. They Help You to Understanding Your Health
Some fitness tracker, especially those in the Fitbit family, can monitor body temperature, heart rate, and rate of respiration.
You can keep track of how vital body organs are functioning and seek medical attention where necessary.
Some Fitbit for women even have health checker, which makes it easy for the female audience to understand their wellness.
3. You Can Use Them to Track Your Goals
Your targets are more easily achievable when there is a fitness record that you can access and manage.
A fitness tracker is a good device to use to set goals, complete milestones, and compare results.
You can then decide whether to step up the exercises and meet your targets in future or diversify the physical exercises you take.
4. Use it to Enhance Your Training Sessions
You might be taking exercises to lose weight, maintain a healthy body shape or serious athletics.
Some fitness trackers will enable you to exercise within ideal zones and limits for the specific goal.
You will attain effective training because the fitness trackers are able to accommodate all the extreme ends of exercises.
5. A Fitness Tracker is a Useful Training Assistant
It’s important to note that some fitness trackers have the reminder feature, which plays the role of reminding you to get up, get down to your exercise, and meet your fitness goals.
You can set the device to notify you on the schedule for a specified period of time.
This training assistant ability in the fitness tracker congratulates you when you hit the targets and raise the confidence levels.
Drawbacks of Fitness Trackers
The miraculous devices are awesome in enhancing training and physical exercises. But they come with some glitches.
They’re Not Always Accurate
Fitness trackers can at times give wrong data on steps, sleeping hours and pulse.
Approximately 20% of the data is inaccurate according to a recent survey.
This problem can negatively affect your health especially if you base your exercise on the data.
The Best are Expensive
We know there are affordable fitness trackers in the market. But the very best ones, those with tons of premium features, are often expensive.
Take Fitbit, for example. It’s the one brand that’s busy designing excellent activity trackers.
And with the likes of Versa Lite, Charge 2 and Charge 3 attracting a wider market, it clear that they don’t have a real competitor in the market.
Except there’s one big problem with Fitbit:
It’s Easy to Lose Interest in a Fitness Tracker
Fitness trackers are impersonal and just concentrate on numbers.
This is likely to make you less interested in taking the exercises especially when you don’t have the mood to achieve the targets.
The trackers rule out the human behavior of training and they focus on numbers and professional attitude. You should try to incorporate fun in the process to avoid boredom.
There is hardly a device that is 100% efficient. But owing to the many benefits of the device, I definitely recommend getting one if you haven’t yet.
Do fitness trackers help you get fit?
Fitness trackers can help motivate you to move more and be more active throughout the day. The data they provide on steps, calories burned, and exercise can encourage you to increase daily movement. However, trackers alone don’t get you fit – you still need to put in the exercise work.
Should I rely on a fitness tracker to lose weight?
Focusing just on a tracker’s data probably won’t lead to much weight loss. You need both calorie-burning workouts and a healthy diet to effectively shed pounds. But trackers can help by making you more aware of daily activity and calorie expenditure.
Can fitness trackers help improve your sleep?
Many trackers monitor sleep quality, time slept, and sleep stages. This data can help identify issues and patterns that allow you to improve sleep consistency and quality. But changing sleep environments and habits is most important.
Are basic pedometers as good as expensive smart fitness trackers?
For step counting, basic pedometers can be nearly as accurate as higher-end trackers. But they lack advanced features like sleep tracking, GPS, heart rate monitoring, workout logging, and connectivity. Prioritize the features most relevant to your fitness goals.