May 302012
 

I’m a big fan of my Fitbit. I’ve had enough people ask me about it that I’ve decided to post my standard response here. This isn’t the first time I’ve written about how amazing Fitbit is. See Fitbit Customer Support is Awesome

Why do I love Fitbit? The Fitbit reminds me to get off my fat ass… I was doing pretty good for a while, then I got lazy. Not just feeling kinda lazy, but numbers show I’ve been lazy. I make all this data public to keep me honest. I could lie to myself all I want, but the numbers don’t lie.

One recommendation. I wish I had measured myself before I started losing weight. I’m down a pant size and my shirts fit better, but I have no numbers to back it up.

I’ve bought 4 Fitbits now, actually… one for myself, one for my girlfriend, one for my mom, then I upgraded to the new version and gave my first one to a friend.

I’m not alone in raving about Fitbit. If you want to see more people just tickled with it, look on the forums on myfitnesspal.com and fitbit.com and fitbit’s facebook. Seriously, it’s overwhelmingly positive, and for good reason. Their customer support is one of the best I’ve ever dealt with. They sent me a spare base station for work, free of charge, just for asking! This is a company I’m more than willing to buy something from again.

So, Fitbit is not perfect. It’s not 100% accurate for step count or stairs climbed, but it is pretty close. Besides, it’s relative improvement that really matters, right?

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Self improvement isn’t the only motivation to keep improving. Everything is more fun with friends, right? I have friends on fitbit, we compete to see who gets the most activity over the previous 7 days, running total. I get mad if I forget to wear my fitbit!

If you wanna see alternative products, http://www.bodybugg.com/ http://www.bodymedia.com/ and http://jawbone.com/up are the major competetors. http://www.directlife.philips.com/ is kinda still around, but isn’t really much of a contender anymore. Jawbone is iOS only last I checked, bodybugg and bodymedia fit both have monthly fees.

Setup is really simple. Just install the client software, plug in the base station, and sign up. Full directions are at http://www.fitbit.com/start

Actual usage is really simple. Fitbit lasts about a week on a charge, takes about 20 mins to charge, syncs automatically every 15 mins or so using ANT+ networking whenever it’s within range of the base (like 15-20 ft).

If you’re going to track calories eaten vs calories burned, myfitnesspal.com integrates with fitbit and the android and iOS app for MyFitnessPal is much easier to use for tracking food than Fitbit.

Last I looked, they’re $99 with free shipping on Amazon. If you want one right away, RadioShack and BestBuy carry them, but not in every store, so use the product locator.

Full disclosure: I am just a happy customer!

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