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Old 05-15-2014, 10:27 AM   #21
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I have the fitbit Force. My wife got The Rash from hers, and so returned it, but I am fine (no allergic reaction to the nickel for me). I also have the Fitbit scale, and I really love both of them. One of the really cool aspects is the automatic syncing to The Cloud - I step on the scale, and since I weigh different than my wife, it automatically knows that it is me, and syncs everything so that I can keep track of it with literally no effort. I believe in the old adage "if you measure it, it will get better" - not always true, but quite often it is, at least in my experience. I do find that I am more apt to get my butt off the sofa if I get a text "almost there - only 1,450 steps to your goal!"

The social aspect is also a great motivator for me. Comparing my steps to others (or just sharing my goals) is a great way to help me be more active.
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Old 05-15-2014, 10:36 AM   #22
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I am curious, which model of Fitbit do you people have? There are at least 5 models on their website.
I use the Fitbit One, which I can highly recommend. I would also recommend studying the Amazon reviews of the models one is considering, for a more thorough discussion of pros and cons of each model.
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Old 05-15-2014, 10:49 AM   #23
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I recently resurrected my Fitbit Zip. Now I just need to resurrect my activity after an extremely sedentary Chiberian fall/winter/spring.
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Old 05-15-2014, 11:30 AM   #24
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If you have an iPhone 5S you don't really need a band to measure your steps. Just keep the phone in your pocket and use an app that reads the phone's M7 coprocessor that measures all this stuff.

I use Moves and it does a nice job. It even tracks where I went. There are other fine apps too.

I can't say I get motivated to excursive more from all this, but I do find it interesting to see how much walking I do from day to day. It varies a lot.

I apparently walk much more when I'm on vacation. One more reason to take more trips!
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Old 05-16-2014, 08:11 AM   #25
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Thanks to everyone who participated. These devices are fun, and I am surely impressed by some of the massive daily totals mentioned!

Ha
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Old 05-16-2014, 01:19 PM   #26
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I have the fitbit Force. My wife got The Rash from hers, and so returned it, but I am fine (no allergic reaction to the nickel for me).
If you read the long thread on the Fitbit discussion pages, many people have reported problems who don't have an allergy and many people who do have problems with nickel have no problem with the Fitbit Force. That is, I don't believe there is any conclusion whatsoever that the problem with the Force is due to nickel.

Here is a good thread on the Fitbit discussions about the skin irritation:

https://community.fitbit.com/t5/Forc...-arm/td-p/3661

I had a Fitbit Force and had no problems myself. However, I returned it for a couple of reasons. First, there have been reports of some people who had problems who did eventually develop a problem. I saw, for example, someone who didn't return her Force because it wasn't causing a problem and then it did cause a problem and she ended up with a scar on her arm even though she quit using it.

Secondly, while they will support the Force with updates that are easily applicable to all of their products, I seriously doubt that they are going to do much to upgrade a recalled product. It is basically a dead product now. In my case, I returned the Force, got my refund, and I've gone back to using my Fitbit One (which I already owned). DH is using a Fitbit Flex which is also nice.

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If you have an iPhone 5S you don't really need a band to measure your steps. Just keep the phone in your pocket and use an app that reads the phone's M7 coprocessor that measures all this stuff.
!
I do have an iPhone 5S and I do use also an apps that tracks steps with it. However, the thing is that I don't carry my iPhone 5S in my pocket 100% of the time and don't want to do so. So, the Fitbit works better. Also, the Fitbit does do things other than just measure steps (I use the calorie burn coupled with MyFitnessPal to tell Fitbit what I've eaten to determine my calorie deficit).
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Old 05-16-2014, 11:21 PM   #27
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Fitbit One.
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Old 05-17-2014, 01:10 AM   #28
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I've used the original Fitbit, the Flex, the Force, and am currently using the One. The Flex had good water resistance, but was annoying to recharge and did not track elevation changes. The Force had much less water resistance, but let me see my steps on the display (essential for motivation for me) and was easy to charge. I did not have any rash issues, but it would not reliably record steps if my wrist was not moving--and it credited me for steps that were actually arm movements while seated at the sewing machine.

The One is more durable than the original Fitbit and has a better grip for clipping to your clothing. It does not have the "buzz/reward" that the wrist models have when you reach your self-chosen step goal for the day.

A caveat with any of the Fitbit models: If you want 100% accuracy so the unit counts all of your steps, but not random movement, keep looking. It can take six or seven steps for the units to begin registering your activity. You can watch this using the phone application. If you take that sixth or seventh step, the step count will jump forward all at once, and then it will continue to register steps. If you stop at four or five steps, it will decide that was random movement, and not record the steps. (So if you are taking a couple of steps, then stopping, as you do in while cooking or standing at your desk, you won't see that activity register reliably.)

Also, the "flights of stairs" credit is flaky. It's fun, but prone to registering non-climbing changes in elevation. For instance, over a twenty-mile car ride with a thousand feet cumulative elevation changes, I might gain a couple of hundred steps, and from five to fifteen flights of stairs.

A National Institute of Health study on NEAT (Non-Exercise Activity Thermogenesis) highlights the value of moving throughout the day. The activity pie chart and bar graphs on the free Fitbit dashboard give me effective feedback on how successful I have been with that each day.

Non-exercise activity t... [Best Pract Res Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2002] - PubMed - NCBI
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Old 05-17-2014, 09:11 AM   #29
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...The Force....credited me for steps that were actually arm movements while seated at the sewing machine.

....
Also, the "flights of stairs" credit is flaky. It's fun, but prone to registering non-climbing changes in elevation. For instance, over a twenty-mile car ride with a thousand feet cumulative elevation changes, I might gain a couple of hundred steps, and from five to fifteen flights of stairs.
...
Now this is the activity monitor I have been looking for--"steps" for things like knitting and riding in cars? I'm their market!
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Old 05-17-2014, 12:06 PM   #30
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Originally Posted by Indigo Mule View Post
I've used the original Fitbit, the Flex, the Force, and am currently using the One. The Flex had good water resistance, but was annoying to recharge and did not track elevation changes. The Force had much less water resistance, but let me see my steps on the display (essential for motivation for me) and was easy to charge. I did not have any rash issues, but it would not reliably record steps if my wrist was not moving--and it credited me for steps that were actually arm movements while seated at the sewing machine.

The One is more durable than the original Fitbit and has a better grip for clipping to your clothing. It does not have the "buzz/reward" that the wrist models have when you reach your self-chosen step goal for the day.

A caveat with any of the Fitbit models: If you want 100% accuracy so the unit counts all of your steps, but not random movement, keep looking. It can take six or seven steps for the units to begin registering your activity. You can watch this using the phone application. If you take that sixth or seventh step, the step count will jump forward all at once, and then it will continue to register steps. If you stop at four or five steps, it will decide that was random movement, and not record the steps. (So if you are taking a couple of steps, then stopping, as you do in while cooking or standing at your desk, you won't see that activity register reliably.)

Also, the "flights of stairs" credit is flaky. It's fun, but prone to registering non-climbing changes in elevation. For instance, over a twenty-mile car ride with a thousand feet cumulative elevation changes, I might gain a couple of hundred steps, and from five to fifteen flights of stairs.

A National Institute of Health study on NEAT (Non-Exercise Activity Thermogenesis) highlights the value of moving throughout the day. The activity pie chart and bar graphs on the free Fitbit dashboard give me effective feedback on how successful I have been with that each day.

Non-exercise activity t... [Best Pract Res Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2002] - PubMed - NCBI
Interesting comments. With my one I have noticed that a few steps here and there will not register. However, I have frequently checked and I have never had floors credited unless I was actively walking. Last night I checked my device as I got into GF's car for her to drop me home. No floors or steps until she dropped me at home, and I walked in and up the stairs.

If I get 5 or 6 miles and 40-50 floors, I have not been a slug that day. Many a day I missed this amount of floors, although this week I got my skydiver badge. After my son gets comfortable in SF we'll see how many floors we can get when I visit him.

Ha
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Old 05-17-2014, 01:25 PM   #31
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This thread cost me money. Just got the fitbit one from Amazon for my wife and I. Always paid attention to finances might as well track our health a bit. So far 9,067 steps today and it is not quite noon.
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Old 05-17-2014, 01:33 PM   #32
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Interesting comments. With my one I have noticed that a few steps here and there will not register. However, I have frequently checked and I have never had floors credited unless I was actively walking. Last night I checked my device as I got into GF's car for her to drop me home. No floors or steps until she dropped me at home, and I walked in and up the stairs.

If I get 5 or 6 miles and 40-50 floors, I have not been a slug that day. Many a day I missed this amount of floors, although this week I got my skydiver badge. After my son gets comfortable in SF we'll see how many floors we can get when I visit him.

Ha
I get floors credited on the rare occasion when I am on the elliptical at the gym. I guess this is due to the up-and-down nature of this machine. I do not usually climb stairs at all due to mechanical issues with my knees, but my Fitbit One says I have climbed 265 flights of stairs in the past year or so since I bought it. I doubt I have actually climbed more than a dozen.

Also, it seems to record a surprisingly high number of steps when I am on a stationary bike or seated elliptical or other such cardio machine. I am skeptical.

Otherwise, it seems pretty accurate for just regular walking. Riding in a car doesn't seem to add steps or flights of stairs.

Edited to add: Personally I don't think it matters one way or the other. What matters, for me, is that the Fitbit is motivational. What it says, doesn't matter. What steps I add in response to what it says, matter.
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Old 05-17-2014, 02:09 PM   #33
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Otherwise, it seems pretty accurate for just regular walking. Riding in a car doesn't seem to add steps or flights of stairs.

Edited to add: Personally I don't think it matters one way or the other. What matters, for me, is that the Fitbit is motivational. What it says, doesn't matter. What steps I add in response to what it says, matter.

I agree with this last point in particular. Think some of you folks are over thinking it. If it fails to record you took 6 steps walking across the kitchen big deal. If it gives you 6 extra steps when your swinging in a swing who cares. The point is its reasonable accuracy level combined with the motivation to move more than you otherwise might have. YMMV, or maybe I should say YSMV, the S being steps.

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Old 05-19-2014, 06:49 PM   #34
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I got a fitbit at the end of December I had used a pedometer before, but had quit using one for a couple of years. I realized that was slacking off on walking a little so I got the fit bit. Wow, I had really slacked off! I am now back to getting 10,000 steps on most days. I do find a pedometer to be motivational.
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Old 05-21-2014, 01:33 AM   #35
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Here's what motivated me to get the Fitbit. A good friend recently suffered a significant stroke in the early morning hours. She was wearing the Fitbit One in sleep mode. She was found at 8:00 a.m and the Fitbit showed an awakening and major disturbance at 7:00 a.m. The neurologist was able to narrow down when the stroke occurred using the sleep mode diagram. While not conclusive, her doctors believe this is when the stroke occurred and responded accordingly. That day I went out and bought a Fitbit One just to see what happens while I'm sleeping, as funny as that sounds. The upside is that it's been a real motivator to keep me moving, and I average 13K a day. I've purchased 4 of them in one month, giving 3 away as gifts. Furthermore, my 18 year old niece lost her new Fitbit One up in the Seattle Space Needle after logging in only 3K steps, and with some (minor) and pleasant persistence via email, the folks at Fitbit agreed to send a replacement, so their customer service is superb. Here's a tip for the Fitbit One users. Use a label maker to stick a label on the back of the device that says: Please call xxx-xxx-xxxx.
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Old 05-21-2014, 02:05 AM   #36
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I had never heard of Fitbit until I read this thread just now.

Interesting, but I have a strong aversion to wearing or carrying jewelry or electronic devices. The less I carry around with me, the happier I am, so although my physical activity is unmeasured, my bicycle habit will have to do for now.
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Old 05-21-2014, 06:55 AM   #37
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Got my first 25,000 step badge yesterday, which equates to more than 11 miles. Weather is finally starting to get nice, and makes the walking more enjoyable. Though I am feeling a little sore today.

Now if anyone has any finance/retirement podcast recommendations for my walks.....
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Old 05-21-2014, 09:07 AM   #38
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Now if anyone has any finance/retirement podcast recommendations for my walks.....
EconTalk | Library of Economics and Liberty
https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/...lk/id135066958

It's not quite finance/retirement, but close. Russ Roberts has been doing Econtalk for years and has lots of very interesting topics and guests, though my DW and DW aren't always as interested as I am when I listen in the car...

Also close to finance/retirement - I keep Bob Brinker and Dave Ramsey on my iPhone for the occasional listen.

Most of the time I listen to tech/politics/history podcasts when I exercise...
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Old 05-23-2014, 07:53 AM   #39
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Now if anyone has any finance/retirement podcast recommendations for my walks.....
First of all, DH and I use FitBit Zips.

Podcasts... I like general news podcasts but from outside the US, to get a "macro" perspective which actually helps in figuring out the investing environment. BBC Business Daily and Archives are both good. I also follow news podcasts in German (Tagesschau.de) and French (France 24 has a lot of them). Planet Money and Freakonomics are fun and educational.
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Old 05-24-2014, 09:30 AM   #40
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In 2+ months I've averaged about 12200 steps. Generally I just set the readout to mileage and try to get 5 miles per day on my Vivofit mentioned here: Activity monitor fun

I run and walk and do gardening. The Vivofit helps me to get motivated on truly lazy days. If the mileage is really low I might not eat quite as much.
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