As any of my regular readers will know, I have been struggling with my weight lately. I joined Weight Watchers and while I love the program, my husband was laid off and we couldn’t sustain the monthly fees, so I had to let it go. Luckily, BodyMedia offered me a BodyMedia FIT armband to review, and it has proven to be a very valuable tool in my journey to weight loss and fitness.
BodyMedia FIT is an on-body monitoring system that consists of the BodyMedia FIT Armband monitor, online Activity Manager, an optional Display and free downloadable apps for mobile device users. BodyMedia FIT Armbands automatically track the calories burned during your daily activities — from pumping iron to using an iron — and monitor the quality of your sleep, an important factor in weight loss. The information tracked can easily be managed with BodyMedia’s online Activity Manager. Add in the easy-to-use food log and you have the right information to improve your weight loss.
When I first put the Core armband on, it was more out of curiosity than desire. I didn’t understand how it could help me lose weight and feel motivated, but then I went online and registered so that I could track my progress. The registration required a credit card, but it does come with the first three months free, so no charges will be applied to the card right away. In the registration, I was asked my age, height and weight and I could enter my waist measurement. It asked how many calories I eat a day, and offered a calculator to help figure that out, and it asked what my goal weight is and how much activity I plan to do each day. It then calculated the date that I would reach my goal with the criteria I entered.
Below I will show you how the program works, and you will see all of my successes and failures for the week. I plan to continue this each week, so take a look at how I did this week…
I set my goal at a 2lb loss each week, and I jumped back and forth between moderately active and extremely active. Yes, you can change your goals whenever you want…love that! While I want to get stronger and healthier too, I set my goal as weight loss.
Each day I can look at my summary of calories burned and consumed, the calorie deficit (my goal is for that to be 1000 each day), my physical activity and sleep. Below is the past 7 days summary. As you can see, I didn’t lose my 2 lbs, but I did lose something…and I also lost 1.5 inches off of my waist already!
Each day I log my meals on the BodyMedia site. There are a few ways to do this: you can just type in the food in the search bar and see if your item shows up in the results (it often does), you can create a food yourself by entering the nutritional values, or you can create a recipe. The program tracks your calorie consumption for each meal and for the day. I was pleased to see that I eat fewer calories than I thought I did, although I’m sure that entering my diet into the program is motivational to limit what I eat.
Then I looked at the type of food that I am eating. I wasn’t happy with what I learned. My diet consists primarily of fat and carbs. That shouldn’t be a surprise considering the drastic weight gain I’ve experienced, but it was a real eye opener for me, and I will absolutely do better from here on out. I love that this program tells me things like this!
While wearing the armband, my activity levels are tracked. It uses mets to determine if I am being active and if it is moderate activity or vigourous activity. I can also use this exercise calculator to determine how many calories are burned with each type of exercise.
The physical activity chart tracks the type of activity and how long I did each one. My target each day is 30 minutes of moderate activity and 15 minutes of vigorous activity. I wimped out on Saturday and did nothing, which brought my averages way down, but I was proud of my level of activity otherwise. I was walking or running every evening and often throwing in another walk each morning.
Another really cool feature with this armband is how it tracks sleep. It tells you how long you were laying down and how long you were actually sleeping. I was quite surprised about a few nights and how little I actually slept (I blame the snoring husband), but other nights were not too bad. This is a great tool for knowing when to make yourself get to bed!
This program also records all of my personal bests, so that I can compete with myself and try to beat them. I am a competitive person, so I love this feature.
The armband is light and thin and I hardly notice it anymore. I am wearing it most of the time, and the BodyMedia program tells me how long I have had it on each day. I love looking at the program to see how I did each day, and I find it very motivating to look at my goals each day. The LINK armband is bluetooth enabled, and I think it would be even more motivating because you could look at your smartphone for your progress while you were exercising, and know whether or not you should keep going.
Check back next Sunday to see my progress with weight loss!