Fitness trackers aren’t just for super strong CrossFit fanatics. If you want to stay on top of how many steps you actually take a day, your heart rate during a jog, or how much exercise it really takes to burn off a huge meal, a fitness tracker is the perfect gadget to help you.
All the data is synced to your phone, so you can check it whenever you want to see your progress.
Here are 8 ways a fitness tracker can boost your fitness routine:
1) Stay motivated
The struggle is real when it comes to staying motivated. However, charting your progress and seeing how you’re improving in real-time can make a real difference.
This is where fitness bands like the Garmin Vivofit 4 come into their own. The one-year battery life means you can track your steps, calories burned and sleep quality 24/7 without having to worry about charging it up every few days.
It recognises a whole host of different activities too. Whether you’re cycling, long-distance running or even swimming, the Vivofit 4 has you covered.
You can also wirelessly sync with your smartphone, and use the Garmin Connect app to check on how you’re shaping up towards your goals.
2) Check your heart rate
Understanding your resting heart rate is one of the most valuable indicators of fitness – the data proves a useful insight into your general health.
Heart rate monitors are usually only found in expensive GPS sports watches, but some fitness bands – like the Fitbit Charge 3 – also boast this clever tech.
Measuring it can also help you exercise more effectively. The Charge 3 shows you real-time info on which heart rate zone you’re in, from fat-burning to peak intensity. It also offers guided breathing sessions throughout the day for those wanting to stay relaxed.
3) Log activity automatically
It can be pretty frustrating to get to the end of your workout only to realise you forgot to start your watch. You can put an end to all that with a tracker that automatically recognises and records your activity.
The Fitbit Ionic detects what type of workout you’re doing and starts automatically. So, if you’re heading out on a run it’ll activate GPS tracking, and if you’re doing lengths of the pool, it’ll start a swim workout.
4) Never miss a call
Your workout shouldn’t interfere with your daily life. And your fitness tracker shouldn’t stop you socialising.
Smart watches and some fitness bands automatically receive notifications of messages and calls from your smartphone, so you won’t suffer from FOMO while you’re on the treadmill.
The Fitbit Versa will alert you to any calls or messages you receive while you’re busy exercising. You can even reply to messages without needing to use your phone, so you won’t be late replying to anyone important.
5) Monitor your sleeping pattern
Need an excuse to hit snooze a few extra times in the morning? Getting enough sleep benefits your overall health and means you’re better refreshed and energised to take on your workout.
Most fitness bands have some kind of sleep tracker to help you maximise the amount and quality of rest you get. More advanced models track different stages of sleep and some even come with sensors to gently wake you up at the optimal point of your sleep cycle.
6) Get exercise reminders
One of the hardest things about starting to exercise is adapting to the new routine. To help you get the hang of it, you can schedule workouts on your fitness tracker and get reminders for when it’s time to move.
Or, programme your device to give you a nudge when you've been stationary at your desk or on the sofa for too long.
7) Get personal coaching
Doing the same workouts week after week can get dull, and when exercise gets boring, it’s all too easy to put off!
More advanced fitness devices such as the Garmin Vivoactive 3 have a range of structured workouts that you can download. If you’ve got a personal training plan you can also customise the workouts to get step-by-step guidance as you train.
Listening to music can help boost your workout and make exercise more enjoyable. Who doesn’t hit the punchbag a bit harder when the opening chords of “Eye of the Tiger” come on?
Many trackers hold some storage space for your favourite workout soundtracks and gym bangers, so you can leave the phone at home when you head out for your run!
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