What gets measured, gets improved.
These words, spoken by Peter Drucker, made me think of my Fitbit when I saw them on a poster in my office kitchen. I knew my Fitbit measured all sorts of things for me but did any of those things improve?
When I thought about it, not really.
Do I go to gym more often or take more steps every day?
Fitbit did not make any significant changes or improvements in my life at all. I was already going to gym regularly and I had all sorts of active outdoor activities before having a Fitbit. The calories I burned everyday did not go up since I bought it. Neither did the average number of steps I take every week.
Do I have one because I can have so much fun with all the badges I can earn for climbing floors or beating my friends by walking more?
Nope. I am not a very active person in social media anyways. I don’t use twitter or Instagram and I only have a Facebook account because some of my friends insist on using only Facebook to invite me to gatherings.
I have to admit though. Fitbit has done a great job in providing entertainment to its users by providing numerous challenges to complete and presenting various ways to share/compete with friends. I can see why a lot of people get addicted to Fitbit because of these features. It is just not why I have mine.
So, why do I have one and say I really need it? Here is why.
Before Fitbit, I was only guessing how active I was throughout a week. I don’t have to guess anymore with my Fitbit. It gives me the assurance that I am doing what I am supposed to do for staying healthy.
When I see calories I burn or steps I take every day go down, I know I am doing something wrong. It is almost like a smoke detector for me. It is not there to change anything; it is there to keep me on track.
If I see an increase in my resting heart rate, especially a couple days back – to – back, I know something is not right. Is it not getting enough sleep? Too much drinking? I guess that’s up to me to figure out. Without the Fitbit, though, I would never know.
If I am restless too often in my sleep, then, the Fitbit lets me know. I can then figure out why and fix it. I hate feeling sleepy way before I am supposed to, and Fitbit can let me know if I am sleeping well enough.
Even if I overdo something usually seen as healthy, Fitbit lets me know so I can adjust myself. When I visited San Francisco for the first time in my life, I walked to everywhere to see more of the city. Seeing that I took 50,000+ steps on my first day made me think maybe walking to everywhere is not a good idea. I thought I might end up not being able to walk to anywhere the rest of the trip because of feet pain.
All these features about tracking and measuring really helps me stay on track. But they are not the only reason why I like my Fitbit so much. There are also a couple things I categorize as “nice-to-haves”. One of them is the silent vibrating alarm.
I am usually very scared of oversleeping and ending up late to wherever I am supposed to go. So, I set up 5 or 6 different alarms, each set up 10 minutes apart from each other and torture my girlfriend for an hour every morning till I finally get out of the bed.
I still set up 5 or 6 alarms with Fitbit, nothing has changed there, but the Fitbit vibrates silently on my wrist without torturing my girlfriend.
Another nice-to-have for me is the call notifications. I usually keep my phone in silent with vibration on but I never feel those vibrations while walking, and end up missing calls. Thanks to the Fitbit, I miss less of those phone calls as it vibrates on my wrist instead of my pocket whenever somebody calls me.
Overall, this is why having a Fitbit didn’t change much in my life but I still love and need it. I know Fitbit can do a lot more than what I explained here. My friends use it for things like following an actual food plan or tracking their exercises. I guess I have a unique way of using mine.