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How to Choose a Wearable

How to Choose a Wearable

Fitness trackers aren’t going to turn you into Chris Evans overnight, but they might just give you that motivation to get off your couch and kickstart your healthy lifestyle. There are tons of misconceptions surrounding what fitness trackers do, some think that they are no more than glorified pedometers whereas others think they are superwatches capable of tracking everything from walking to even specific sports like Tennis and Skiing. Part of this confusion stems from the huge variety of trackers in the market. So how do you choose the right tracker for you?


Are You a Highly Sedentary Individual?

If you are just absolutely sedentary, all you need is probably to start moving more, and keeping tabs on your diet more regularly. In this case, you most likely only need a basic tracker that counts your steps, calories burnt and probably hours slept. By quantifying how much you move (or not move), you have a goal to work towards to keep on increasing your daily calories burnt. A couple of thousand steps a day does a great deal to turn your activity status from sedentary to lightly active, which could easily take you out of the obese category whenever you hop on the weighing scale.

What's Your Budget?

Fitness trackers go all the way from $20 to $800, each with their own pros and cons. If you are limited by your budget to begin with, you might want to consider these entry-level trackers that are actually surprisingly good for their price.

What's Your Budget?

If you need to keep track of the time, or you don’t like to whip out your smartphone too often, chances are is that you will need a display on your fitness tracker. It could be a simple LED screen just telling you the time or steps travelled or it could be a comprehensive display that includes a stopwatch as well. Usually if you skip the display, the band will look more like an accessory so wearing your normal watch won’t look too strange, but if you use one with a display, it doesn’t seem quite fashionable to have 2 bulky objects on your wrist.

Does Heart-Rate Tracking Matter?

Most top-notch fitness trackers include heart-rate monitoring because it’s incredibly useful for performance oriented athletes. It keeps you in the training zone and gives you a better gauge of how many calories you burnt. There are trackers with optical heart rate monitors and ones that are EKG accurate. It’s best to use EKG accurate ones for sports and optical ones for more sedentary individuals who just want to keep track of their daily health and possibly sleep quality.

Credits: Wareable

Do You Need the Sleep-Tracking Power?

Most trackers can track your sleep now. But the algorithms differ greatly. Some simply keep track of the amount of time spent slumbering, some others have comprehensive metrics on how deep you slept, the number of times you woke up and the stages of REM sleep you were in. The more advanced ones are once again more expensive.

Does Aesthetics Matter a Lot?

If looking good is your top priority, the external appeal of the fitness tracker might be extrmely important to you. Fitness trackers vary a lot in terms of their design. You’ve got bulky and rugged ones pretty much built for the outdoor adventurer or the avid sports enthusiasts, the minimalist band for those Basics out there and the luxurious, sleek-looking fashion bands for the ladies as well. If how these bands look matter to you, these are a few you should consider.

Smartwatch or Fitness Tracker?

If you are solely looking to get fit, just getting a dedicated fitness tracker will do. However, if you want additional smart features like the ability to reply messages, pick up calls, check the weather and so on, you might want to consider a smartwatch. Usually, smartwatches are far more expensive and often less fitness-oriented. However, they are highly practical devices if you don’t like taking out your smartphone very often. Do note that if you choose to use a smartwatch, wearing a Rolex is nearly impossible to pull off, in terms of fashion. Who wears 2 watches?

How Much Juice?

Does it bother you to recharge your device every 2-3 days? If it does, you might want to check on the battery life of your fitness tracker. Most fitness trackers have a battery life of around 1 week or less than that, however, trackers like the LifeTrak R450 that run purely on a watch battery can give you a few month worth of battery life.

Water Resistance

Are you an avid swimmer? If you are, make sure you get a fitness tracker dedicated for swimmers to track your workouts. At the very least, make sure it is water-proof, not splash-proof only (these aren’t meant to be submerged in water).

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