You may remember, a few weeks ago, I told you (in this blogpost) that I was very excited to have been picked as one of the Mumsnet testers of the Fitbug Orb, a fintess tracker and well-being motivator. Well, I put it on my wrist as soon as I'd set it up (a process I told you about in my initial blogpost) and it's been on there ever since, apart from when I'm in the shower ! It can also be worn around your neck, in your pocket or attached to your clothing.
I already had a pedometer but I only used to put it around my neck when I was heading out for a long walk with the kids. It was really motivating to see in real time how many kilometres we'd covered and how many calories we'd burned - something that the Fitbug Orb doesn't offer because it doesn't actually offer any information in real time. You have to synch it with your ipad for the data to be viewable via the app or on your laptop on the Fitbug account. What the Fitbug DOES do, though, is monitor your activity 24/7 without you even thinking about it. I don't drive so I knew I walked a fair bit but I've been amazed to learn how much distance I cover each day - since going back to work at the start of the week, 17,858 steps/12km on Monday, 18,470 steps/12km on Tuesday, 13,655 steps/9km on Wednesday and 18,266 steps/12km on Thursday. And there's me thinking I never do any sport !
I used to love getting a gold star at school and I'm equally secretly pleased to get a pink dot on my activity calendar every day to show I've met my targets !
You can also manually add extra non-step activity. I had a quick scroll through and couldn't help but smile when I saw that they had "cooking or food preparation" on there - I would never have considered that to be sporty activity before (probably because I tend to munch on bits as I'm chopping !).
Food-tracking is very simple too. You can't do it via the app, you need to log on to your Fitbug account - I actually find that I do everything via my laptop, just leaving the ipad app running in the background so the data can be synched from the ipad (automatically or by pushing a button on the FitBug Orb). I tend to log my calories before eating, as this will sometimes put me off eating a dessert or a snack if I see how many calories are in them ! I've also just linked up my MyFitnessPal account so data should be cross-transferable between the two.
The one thing that has been a big fat failure is the sleep tracking. I try every night and just can't get it to record any data at all. You're supposed to push the button three times and it will flash to show it's working - mine just stays on green for ages or goes red. I think the problem is that it needs to "talk" to the ipad which is left downstairs to charge overnight and it can't synch from that far away. The problem is, if I go downstairs next to the ipad to synch and put it into sleep mode, I'll then need to walk back upstairs to the bedroom and walking 50 steps or more will turn off the sleep mode. I haven't found a solution so far so I've given up on sleep tracking, which is a bit disappointing.
When I have an idle moment, I like scrolling through the health and lifestyle articles on the Fitbug website.
There are lots of delicious-sounding recipes that I can't wait to try out too - Spicy Lamb Burgers with Tzatziki and Pita, Summer Pudding and Portuguese Seafood Rice all sound very tasty.
I was looking for a motivational tool to help me get back on track with my weightloss and it certainly delivers - I love having a sneaky peek to see how many steps I've taken and, if the numbers aren't as high as I hope, I'll head off for a run around outside with the kids or just do the vacuuming to up my totals and get a pink dot ! I think buying a dongle would solve my sleep-tracking issue but to be honest, the calories and activity trackers (as well as goals) are what's most important to me.
star rating : 4/5
RRP : £49.95
for more information : www.fitbug.com
Disclosure : I am a member of the Mumsnet Bloggers Network Research Panel, a group of parent bloggers who have volunteered to review products, services, events and brands for Mumsnet. I have not paid for the product or to attend an event. I have editorial control and retain full editorial integrity
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