In recent years, people have become increasingly interested in monitoring and better understanding their health, and will likely be increasingly so in future. And with the launch of the Apple Watch, and its basic activity tracking functionalities, Apple seems to have propelled the wearable device industry forward once again, just like it did with iPod and iPhone, in the music player industry and mobile phone industry. However, with the myriad of advertising in this area, it’s easy to lose focus on what’s truly important, and eventually lead you to wonder why you should even be considering getting a fitness tracker in the first place. Here are three ideas you can consider before getting a fitness tracker to determine whether getting one would be worth your money.
Are you as active as you thought?
With constant tracking, and detailed activity history and summaries presented nicely in graphics in mobile and web applications, it helps individuals get a better understanding of their activity and fitness levels on a daily basis. Also, it enables individuals to monitor the changes over a period of time, and be able to see how much they have improved when doing different workout regimes. With such detailed information presented, it will be clear whether the user has been meeting the targeted goals set by himself. With activity histories for users to base their judgments about their fitness upon, it effectively avoids the problems of unreliable memory and wishful-thinking that can distort an individual’s perception of his activity. Perhaps, with fitness trackers, it’ll be more motivating for individuals to switch from taking the bus to walking to nearby places.
Changing unhealthy eating patterns
Moving towards a healthy lifestyle does not only involve exercising, but it also involves making the right food choices and eating healthily. To see greater results from fitness exercises, proper food intake, with more leafy greens and less fried food is required. While dieting may seem to be a fast and easy method to adopt, the effects do not last and will eventually backfire once the dieting regime stops. With fitness trackers, the notion of healthy living is gradually inculcated in the individual’s mind, especially when he jots down the types of foods that he has eaten, and gradual steps can be taken to reduce unhealthy eating habits and switch to eating healthier foods on a regular basis.
Empowerment of the quantified self
Moreover, with fitness trackers, it would be possible for the individual to feel more empowered and to take charge of his own fitness and wellness levels. In better understanding his own well-being, physically and mentally, it would enable him to manage his stress, sleep and activity patterns on a more proactive basis, and be able to lead a more invigorating life. Also, by knowing and understanding important vital indices, such as heart rate, it would be possible to spot developing health problems at an earlier stage.
With tech giants like Apple backing the wearable device industry, there is little doubt that this trend is here to stay. Soon, a climate and culture that encourages exercising more and eating more healthy foods and snacks is likely surface, and people will be more concerned about their health and the way they live as the average life expectancy increases.
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Fine, S. (2015). Digital Health Devices Are Transforming How We View Health.TuftScope, 13.
Lockhart, J. W., Pulickal, T., & Weiss, G. M. (2012, September). Applications of mobile activity recognition. In Proceedings of the 2012 ACM Conference on Ubiquitous Computing (pp. 1054-1058). ACM.
Mekky, S. Wearable Computing and the Hype of Tracking Personal Activity.
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