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Eliminating the Unnecessary: Weight–Using a FitBit

I’ve used weights, websites and all kinds of charts to figure out how my exercise is helping me tone up or slim down. Nothing has really helped as much as my FitBit. While this post started as just a post about my FitBit, it’s going to turn into so much more.

I’ve wanted a FitBit since around Christmas time. My mom’s birthday is New Year’s Day and my dad and I were researching presents for her. She’s into fitness and we wanted to get her some type of fitness tracker and this seemed like “the thing.”

At $100, we thought this was a bit steep, but we decided to split it and it was pretty reasonable. After it arrived, I knew I needed one.

The FitBit tracks a lot of stuff. It’s this small device about the size of a a stick of gum. You wear it on your belt, waist, pocket or on the inside of a bra. It’s a pedometer, so it tracks all the steps you take each day. It tracks the calories it estimates you are burning based on your activity. It also charts the milage you want, the flights of stairs you climb, and at night, it tracks your sleep efficiency based on how much you move around at night.

There is also a flower on the device. The more active you are, the more the flower grows.

Another awesome part, it integrates with MyFitnessPal.com. So if you enter all the food you eat, it will factor in how many calories you eat versus how many calories you burn. MyFitnessPal.com also gives you motivation in the form of predicting the future. If I eat 1500 calories per day, the website calculator will tell me how many pounds I will lose over five weeks.

Short, obtainable goals.

Plus, you get amazing graphs on your progress. Like these:

fitbit2

fitbit graphs
You’ll notice that mine starts and stops. I didn’t wear it while I was in Florida because I didn’t want to have to take my base unit and what not. So I started up again when I returned. And then the unthinkable happened.

I washed my FitBit.

I left it on my pants and ran them through the washer…and then the drier…before I realized what happened. I immediately put it in a bowl of rice for 24 hours. I had no luck with it powering on. I tried to charge it. No luck. I e-mail the FitBit tech support and the customer service agent instructed me to hit the reset button on the bottom of the base unit. Nothing.

I figured I was out $100 and another for a new FitBit.

I need it. I am accountable to it. If I notice mid-day that I’m not getting enough steps, I go the long way around the building and plan to spend extra time on the treadmill. Not enough stairs? I climb a few extra flights. Without it, I worry that I would slack. Plus the calorie count and the MyFitnessPal.com integration keeps me in line with what I put in and what I burn.

Then yesterday, I got an e-mail that said my new FitBit was on the way. Immediately following that, I had an email from FitBit:

Hi Rebecca,

Thank you for the information. Your replacement Fitbit is now being processed and your confirmation number is ——. Please give it 5-7 business days to be shipped to you. Please go ahead and recycle the defective unit through a local electronics recycling program. You can keep the base station, wrist band and belt clip as your back-ups 🙂

Amazing customer service. I never asked for one. I just wanted some tips for attempting to get mine to work again! So hopefully sometime next week, I’ll be back in business!

So what about you? Do you have a heart monitor, pedometer, pair of shoes or any other workout equipment that you’d recommend to keep those trying to tone up or slim down to keep track of their progress?

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