review: charge HR

IMG_2282For months I’ve been trying to decide whether or not I should buy a Polar HR monitor. Around the time I was going to cave and get one, Fitbit announced they were going to (eventually) release a Fitbit HR monitor. I waited and waited for months! And finally this January they released the Charge HR monitor.. Which I bought on the spot. (Oops, I’m obsessive.) And I have to say.. I love it!

My friend who does have a polar watch and I have compared calories burnt in yoga class. Her polar claims she has burned 200 ish calories while mine hovers around 150. It is possible our bodies are that different, but I’m also willing to accept the Fitbit is slightly less accurate since it is a peripheral monitor. That’s okay with me though — I love the step tracking, stair flights counting, and daily calories burnt features of fitbit. One new thing about the Fitbit Charge HR is that it uses your HR to track your sleep. That has been amazingly accurate for me so far — it even catches me when I accidentally take naps on the couch. (Oops!)

I did have one incident where the Charge HR just up and died on me — without even a low battery warning! The battery is supposed to last 5-8 days, depending on how many activities you track — and about 3 days in to a charge I tracked 2+ hours of activity, and it died sometime that night. Since then, though, the battery hasn’t gone down nearly as rapidly — I’m thinking it was just a fluke of the new battery.

All in all, I’m super pleased with the new Fitbit Charge HR — if you’ve been considering getting one, I would definitely recommend it!

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favorite fitness apps

runkeeper-iconRunKeeper — this is one of the more detailed running apps I’ve encountered. It provides a lot of detail on your runs that are GPS tracked, including splits and change in elevation. I also use it to keep track of the Tone It Up running challenges (i.e., 100 miles to run between Jan 1st and Feb 14th) and it shows progress in that challenge. If you run on a treadmill often, it’s also easy to log those miles as well.

icon175x175C25K Free — this app is the only way I am now able to run! I started this Jan of 2014 having never run a mile before. I’ve run 2 5ks with this app! And, what I really like about it, is if you fall off the running wagon, it’s really easy to find a spot within the program that is within your limits, and then it will help you work your way back up from there.

465e2f6d959c59476417beebff102866_icon_127x127GymPact — I was super skeptical of this app at first, but after using it for several weeks.. It works! Basically, you agree to work out a certain number of days a week (or eat a certain number of vegetables in a week). By checking in to your gym, or wearing your phone on an arm band, getting 10,000+ steps on a fitbit, or running with RunKeeper or another partner app for 30+ mins, you have “worked out” that day. You agree to pay a certain penalty for missing a day. And then everyone who meets their goal splits the penalty money collected. On average, I’ve earned about $1.00 to $1.50 a week. Which is very insignificant, I know — but the point is to avoid the penalty (and it’s worked, it’s motivated me very well!).

Gorgeous_Apps_FitbitFitbit — Obviously you need a Fitbit to fully enjoy this app (sorry!) but it is one of my favorites by far. As everyone knows I’m sure, it tracks your steps, but also stairs, calories burned in a day, and now (with my new Charge HR) my heart rate. If you’re dieting you can also set a weight loss goal, and fitbit will custom calculate how many calories you can eat based on how many you’ve burned with your day’s activity. It’s super handy! Especially because you can log your meals in their app as well.

icon175x175Tone It Up — you’ll only love this app if you love Tone It Up. You can access their blog updates, EVERY workout, and recipes here. BUT the thing I love most is if you follow their workout schedules, you can go to the “Sweat” tab at the bottom, and it lists all the workouts you’re supposed to do for the day. INCLUDING the videos which you can watch in the app AND printables which give detailed instructions, so you can just take your phone with you to the gym! It’s definitely been a game changer for me & helped me stick to Tone It Up.

 

Click any of the links or icons above to view these apps in the iTunes App Store.

Have you tried any of these apps? What are your favorites?

review: whistle

IMG_2259What the heck is a Whistle, you may ask? It’s like a Fitbit… for your dog. Since I love my Fitbit, I had heard musings about it on the internet this whole last year. But for Christmas, my boyfriend and I received one for our dog.

I have to say, it’s pretty cute.

It does have its perks though. It has medication reminders! That is my favorite feature I believe. I am terrible about when it’s time to give flea medicine every month, but this has been very helpful. I’ve also noticed that sometimes it even motivates me to be more active, which can be really handy. If Maverick has had a super lazy day, I’ll usually get off my butt and walk him..

When we first got the Whistle, my boyfriend and I were very excited to see what all Maverick did while we were at school. Our dog is pretty energetic and loves chasing squirrels. Our first day back to school we thought the thing was BROKEN because it registered ZERO activity once we left. Turned out our seemingly energetic, spunky dog turns into a huge lazy bum the second we walk out the door. Which is not only funny but helpful, so we know to play with him more when we get home so he doesn’t get too bored with life!

Would I buy one for myself? Probably not. They are on the pricier side. Is it super fun? Yes! Surprisingly so!

Should you get one? Do you treat your dog like a first born child? If the answer to the latter question is yes, then I think you would love one too. (Okay, so maybe I have a little bit of a dog problem…)

Do you have a Whistle? Do you love it?