Technology,  Weight Loss

Getting Active with a Fitbit Flex

Disclosure: I was not financially compensated for this post. I received a sample of the product for review purposes. The opinions are my own, based on my personal experience with the product.

In the past few years, I’ve struggled with exercise. It’s not that I don’t want to exercise, but that I have trouble staying motivated. I didn’t have an exercise partner and found it hard to keep going with it. I have chronic pain so I can’t do anything too strenuous. My doctor recommended I go for walks and I’m totally ok with that!

I’ve been hearing lots of buzz over the past year or so about this device called a Fitbit. It tracks your steps, distance and calories burned and it seems like it was all my Facebook friends were talking about! Many of them had success with it and lost large amounts of weight. It piqued my curiousity and I wondered if I could use a device like this to help me reach my weight loss goals and finally get in shape.

When Microsoft Canada contacted me at the end of May and asked if I’d be interested in trying out a Fitbit Flex, I jumped at the opportunity. I gained some weight with the stress of renovating, selling our house and moving across the country and knew I needed a change. The Fitbit Flex was a welcome addition to my life and exactly what I needed to motivate me to get more active. I now have a fitness partner in this handy little device!

Fitbit Flex

What is a Fitbit Flex?

A Fitbit Flex is your new best friend. It’s with you all the time. When you’re awake during the day, it tracks your steps, distance, how many minutes you were active during the day and calories burned. When you’re sleeping at night, it tracks your sleep quality and can even wake you up silently in the morning. You’ll be able to create personal goals and see how you are measuring up. You’ll always know if the exercise you are doing is enough and if you need to be doing more. It helps to keep me accountable since I know my Fitbit is always watching!

fitbit3

The Fitbit Flex is worn around your wrist of your non-dominant hand. For me, I wear mine on my left wrist since I’m right-handed. It comes with two sizes of wristbands (large and small). Try them both out to see which one is most comfortable. Also, when you lose weight a smaller wristband may be needed so it’s good that they give you two.

Fitbit Flex

It also comes with a tracker, charging cable, Wireless USB dongle, Fitbit.com membership and access to the free mobile apps for iPhone, Android and Windows.

Important Features

Like I mentioned, my Fitbit Flex is my fitness partner and new best friend. I was shocked to see how much it actually does! Here’s a list of the main features of the Fitbit Flex.

1. Tracks your day. The Fitbit Flex is always working. It tracks your steps, distance, calories burned and how many minutes you are active. You can look at the lights on the wristband to quickly check progress. One light means you’ve done 20% of your daily goal. The starting goal is automatically set for 10,000 steps a day. You can change the amount in the Fitbit dashboard making it more or less depending on your personal goals. I find setting a personal goal helpful and if you have reached a plateau in your weight loss, up your steps to get over that hump!

stacie steps

2. Tracks your night. Discover how many hours you slept, how many times you woke up, how often you were restless as well as use the silent vibrating alarm if you wish! I think this feature is incredibly neat! I learned that I sleep about 6 hours on average and rarely wake up during the night. I am restless a few times, but for the most part my sleep quality is good. You’ll need to remember to turn on sleep tracking before you doze off though. Just tap the Flex window for 1 to 2 seconds and wait for it to vibrate and blink two lights to let you know that you are in sleep mode. Alternatively, you can use the mobile app to log sleep. I normally use the app on my phone to turn on sleep mode since my phone is right on my night table. Then in the morning when I wake up, I open up the Fitbit app and tell the app I’m now awake.

sleep fit bit

3. Water resistant. Wear our Fitbit Flex in the shower or out in the rain. It’s durable and can handle whatever life throws at you! I’ve worn mine out in the rain and it was fine. However, I take mine off to shower though even though I could keep it on. I know some people who never take their Fitbit off.

4. Sync your Stats in Real-Time. I love this feature! I always know how I’m stacking up against my goal. I normally check via my iPhone to see how my day is going. You can sync on your computer using the Wireless USB Dongle and checking your Fitbit dashboard online. For me, the iPhone app is the easiest way to see how I’m doing.

5. Connect and Compete with Friends and Family. If friends and family also have a Fitbit, you can add them as a friend and then share your successes with them. You can see how you measure up to them and have a friendly competition to motivate each other.

Why I Like the Fitbit Flex

The Fitbit Flex has changed my life for the better. It’s made me accountable and shows me that I am improving! That alone has motivated me to keep moving.

Each week I’m emailed my Weekly Progress Report. I can check out my total steps for the week, distance, calories burned, most and least active day and more. I was blown away to see my totals. I never thought it was possible that I could walk that far in just a week especially with my physical challenges! It showed me that I still am capable of going the distance and boosted my confidence.

stacie active

I know I’ve barely scratched the surface with my Fitbit Flex. For such a small device, it does so much. Using the app or the online dashboard, I can create a food log, develop a food plan, track my weight, record my thoughts in a journal, and even keep logs of my heart rate, blood pressure and glucose. I also like that I can keep track of my water consumed since I struggle with making sure I’m drinking enough during the day.

During the move to Ontario, I had a crazy amount of activity! It was definitely much more than what I was used to as I was running around the house, cleaning, packing, etc. I noticed some weight loss when we arrived in Ontario and moved into our new place. I thought to myself that I need to keep going until I reach my goal.

The Fitbit Flex has helped me with getting active; something I’ve struggled with for years. I can stick to a diet, but exercise is a whole other ball game. I like that each step I take counts towards my goal. Even when I spend the day indoors cleaning the house or working on the renovations, I’m still working towards my end goal. My goals may be smaller than others and that’s ok. I do what I can do based on my physical limitation and I’m pretty proud of myself for walking” that far in one week! If you would have told me that I would need to walk that far in a week, I would have said no way could I do that. Now I see that I can and have. The feeling of accomplishment is like no other. I can do this and I will.

Where to Buy

You can buy the Fitbit Flex Wireless Activity and Sleep Wristband in either black or slate at the Microsoft Canada store for $99.95.

What is your favourite feature of the Fitbit Flex?

Stacie Vaughan

Stacie is the mom of two girls and lives in Ontario, Canada. She enjoys cooking/baking, photography, reading, DIY and is fueled by lots of coffee!

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