The technology surrounding fitness tracker is changing at a staggering pace! They are all fun novelties when you first buy them, but you can soon become disappointed when you learn that the new toy dangling from your arm doesn’t track your heart rate, play music while your run, or isn’t waterproof like your best running buddy’s watch. The first tracker I bought was the Nike Fuel Band. One year later, I was over it, and wanted a more sophisticated Garmin watch. Avoid buyer’s remorse. Here are 4 things to consider before buying a fitness tracker: budget, purpose, metrics and style.
4 Things To Consider Before Buying A Fitness Tracker
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The first thing you want to consider when buying your next fitness tracker is your budget. Price range can vary greatly. For the most part, I would say that when it comes to fitness trackers, you get what you pay for. The lower end variety will count steps and maybe estimate calories. More expensive versions might collect more metrics than you care for to know. Checkout the comparison chart below of some of the most popular fitness tracker around.
The next thing before deciding on a tracker is to think about what your activities are. Are you an avid walker, but don’t engage in many other activities? Than a Jawbone Up would do the trick. Are you a wanna be triathlete who’s gearing up to train for your first triathlon? If yes, you might want to consider a multi-sport watch that is specific to swim/bike/run. Do you want to leave your phone at home and run hands-free? If yes, you’ll need a watch with a stand-alone GPS. Are you outside, exposed to the elements often? You definitely need to consider water resistancy. Do you want it to double as a smartwatch as well, or would your rather avoid receiving distracting notifications while out on a run? Do you hate fiddling with buttons? If so, you might want to consider a touch screen. You should have the answers to these questions before you decide on buying an activity tracker.
Once you’ve set your price range, and you’ve narrowed down the purpose of buying a fitness tracker, you’ll want to consider what types of metrics you’ll want to have collected. If your budget is lower, you might have to sacrifice on some features, such as heart monitoring. All fitness trackers will count steps, however more advanced trackers will monitor much more, such as your heart rate, your cadence or even your VO2 Max. The most technologically advanced trackers will even provide comprehensive navigation. The list of data to be collected is quite long, but here are some you might want to consider:
- Steps count
- Heart Monitor
- Calories In/ Calories Out
- VO2 Max
Since you’ll be wearing this novelty timepiece on your wrist , you’ll also want to consider its style. Will you be wearing your activity tracker instead of a watch? Will it be appropriate for your work environment? Some fitness trackers such as Jawbone offer stylish bracelet-like options that will look good even when you wear a dress. On the other hand, that really fancy, expensive Fenix 5 by Garmin wouldn’t quite pair well with heels.
Some fitness trackers come is bright colours, others come with changeable watch faces and wrist bands so you can configure your watch to match your mood, or outfit! What’s important to you?
Here is a comparison chart of some of the most popular fitness tracker around:
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