As more people start their wellness journey, the use of fitness trackers to assist weight loss goals has gained popularity. Fitness trackers are often wearable technology that keeps track of your body stats and activity level, such as walking or running. They operate by using sensors to constantly monitor your movements in various directions.
These devices generally track and store data about the acceleration, duration, frequency, intensity, and patterns of your movement. Usually, the more sensors a tracker has, the more data it can collect. Some trackers have advanced sensors that can evaluate pulse and heart rate through your skin.
Fitness trackers are a great instrument for your health when combined with a clear goal to shoot for. Tracking physical activity can motivate individuals and recalibrate their mindset, enabling them to make changes that promote weight loss and heart health. Integrating this technology into your fitness routine can become an incentive to being more active, whether it’s a dedicated walking or gym time or simply taking the stairs instead of an elevator. Below we share some ways you can use fitness trackers to assist weight loss goals.
So How Can You Use Fitness Trackers To Assist Weight Loss Progress?
Choose the Correct Device to Suit Your Goals
There are several factors to consider when choosing the right tracking device to assist your fitness goals. For example, some people may like to track activity levels at certain times of the day— such as an early morning run. Others may wish to constantly track their activity through out the day— exercise breaks to counter sitting all day at the office. In the case of the latter, you may want to choose a device that will match your outfits and looks.
For those who do not like to wear a gadget throughout the day, and you may track physical activity using your phone. Alternatively, you can also wear clip-on activity trackers, which are more discreet.
Typically, fitness trackers can cost anywhere between $15 to $400 or more. So before purchasing any model, it’s important to do your research. Compare different brands and select a good device within your budget. Higher-priced brands often have advanced sensors with more functions and greater accuracy.
Customize Your Device Settings
While some activity trackers work fresh out of the box, for others you may have to set up an account to get started. Your account is where all your data are collected over time. For more accurate estimates of activity and calories, remember to input your age, sex, height, and weight into your tracker when setting it up. These data influences the computations that trackers make in order to better estimate of the number of calories you burn.
Some people may benefit from a basic fitness tracker designed to count steps and active minutes, while others may prefer a more detailed tracker with additional features. Many of these devices allow you customize the features being tracked. If your fitness tracker offers a degree of customization, consider skipping the aspects you don’t plan to monitor for a more streamlined experience.
Also, most devices are worn on the dominant hand/arm, and this may exaggerate activity and calories burned. As a common rule, wear the device on your non-dominant arm or wrist, to get the full value of your tracker.
Consider What You Will Track
Not all data is created equal, so while fitness trackers offer valuable information, ignore certain types of data that won’t add meaningful insight to your progress.Tracking the wrong things can torpedo your efforts. Extra data that adds little to no significance to your overall goals can be distracting.
Determine what you will like to track and how you wish to track your progress. For instance, are you seeking activity-specific data, want to count steps, or perhaps monitor heart rate? Certain devices also let you track activities and steps separately. You can turn on this feature if you have it and establish goals for daily steps and preferred activities. If you are using a wearable device to monitor steps and physical activity, be sure to differentiate between the two, in terms of what is regarded as a step and specific activity.
To use your tracker in a more significant way, focus on data relevant to your goals— such as losing a certain amount of weight. It will also help you make sense of the information by comparing previous activities to evaluate progress. For instance, if you walked 10,000 steps today, you can compare that number with your average to track your progress.
How to Use Fitness Trackers to Assist Weight Loss: Set Goals
Now that you have determined what to track, it is important to set goals for yourself to accomplish. Creating a personal goal is easy, but it’s harder to customize step count goals when you don’t know how many steps you take per day on average. Set goals based on your current fitness level and work your way up.
They can be daily or weekly goals, that will help motivate you to become more active. For example, you can set 5,000 steps a day and aim to add 1000 extra steps each week. It is a great feeling to know you are capable of achieving anything you set your mind to. Over time, you will know your baseline activity level, and find it easier to accomplish new goals you set.
How to Use Fitness Trackers to Assist Weight Loss: Pair with Healthy Lifestyle
Using trackers alone aren’t the best way to help you attain your weight-loss goals because they’re a passive approach to monitoring. Most monitoring devices have margins for error— ranging from bathroom scales, diet trackers, or wearable fitness trackers.
Although trackers show you the estimated number of calories burned, they don’t show how many calories you’ve eaten. If you see that the scale isn’t budging be sure to monitor your activity as well as your daily food intake to shed off the extra pounds. Combining exercise, mindful eating, and calorie counting with these trackers is a better way of achieving weight-loss success.