FitBit Flex (Product Review)
*Disclaimer* - I purchased this item and have received no compensation for this review.
For the technical specs - visit to the FitBit website.
I'm going to do this a bit different than my normal product reviews with a basic list of pros and cons. I have been using the FitBit for 5 or 6 weeks now, I really wanted to get a sense of what it does and doesn't do before I wrote this.
- It is EASY to use. I have the FitBit flex, which basically looks like those rubber bracelets everyone wears. So fashionable. I am currently wearing a black band, but I have a few replacement bands in various colors on order.
- The actual tracking device is teeny tiny. It easily slides into the super sweet "bracelet"
- The FitBit Flex is WATERPROOF. I have never taken it off for showering or when I went to the hot springs in Glenwood. Not super sure on use while swimming as I don't do that :D
- I like that I don't really have to DO anything for it work. There is an iPhone app and you can either set it to sync manually or all day long. I have mine set to sync all day, which drains the battery a bit more, but updates many times a day. Below are views from the website on the computer and the app.
- The FitBit works Garmin Connect. That means that it I am not "duplicating" anything with the use of this app. In the event I actually do some running outside - where the "Track exercise" tab is a time/calorie burn will appear. The FitBit steps will be offset by the calories burned by running (If I burned 3000 for the day from steps, it would subtract the Garmin calories from that number to not duplicate calorie burn).
- The FitBit also syncs directly with My Fitness Pal (food tracking app). I only enter the food I eat into My Fitness Pal and then FitBit tells me my calories consumed and the amount of calories I have left, based on the goals that I program in. Initially, to lose the 10 pounds I've gained in the last 6 months, I put in the most difficult - 1000 calorie deficit. I have since adjusted to 500 calorie deficit and it doesn't make me feel like crying.
- The FitBit also tracks sleep patterns, which I actually find pretty interesting. Apparently I actually fall asleep pretty quickly, and other than a small amount of tossing and turning, I sleep pretty well. (So why am I so tired getting an average of 7.5-8 hours a night)?
- I really like the "friend" aspect of FitBit. You friend people either via email or Facebook and you can compete for number of steps. (All other information is usually private, i.e. - weight and weight loss goals). I currently am in "competition" with Dave Mari and L. L is a machine and I likely will never beat her. I couldn't even catch her the week I ran a marathon and she only ran a half. It is a big motivator to keep moving.
- The battery charges pretty fast. I have never let it go below "medium" charge, but like most electronics, the charger plugs into a USB and I have it in my car and every other day I am able to fully charge on my morning commute.
- You can change all of your goals as often as you want. (Number of steps, miles, etc.)
- You can use the FitBit for alarms, although I have not used that function.
Not So Great
- The battery life kinda sucks. It is supposed to last 5 days, although I don't think mine has ever gotten close to that. Part of that is probably because I have mine set on all day sync.
- IT IS ADDICTING. For real, I am obsessed with this stupid thing.
- Price - a bit steep at $99... You can probably get one used, as I bet most people that invest in one give up after a while.
- Be aware that this is NOT 100% accurate. I should not even have to say that, but lets be real. There is no GPS in this device and I have yet to have the mileage come within 5-10% of what I am running. I feel that might be a good thing, as it is underestimating my movement.
- Steps - I find that they are probably under, if anything. Especially on the treadmill. Again, same, better to underestimate I think.
- As far as calories "remaining" - the number does not match what My Fitness Pal says. Not sure which is more "accurate" - just know they aren't the same.
- Just like any other product, the FitBit can be a useful tool for either weight loss or just getting your butt off the couch. BUT YOU ACTUALLY HAVE TO USE IT....
- Related: Although I personally have not lost any weight while using it, L has lost 6 pounds (as of last weekend) since we got these the first week in August. In all fairness, I am not really using as a weight loss tool, and on days I overindulge, I do not log all my calories.
- I really do like the FitBit... if it can help keep me in check, I will keep using it.
With that said - if you want to friend me, find me on Facebook :)