activity tracker originalIt’s the start of a new year when the holiday remnants of too much food and drink (and not as much activity) bring on guilt and that deep knowing that something has to change. Enter the new year’s resolution. “I need to eat better, quit smoking, drink less… and exercise more.”

None of it sounds like fun but when something has to be done, most of us will ponder that last option – exercise – because it doesn’t require sacrifice. At least not in the ‘giving up on things that I love’ sort of way.

It’s much easier to add in a little more movement than it is to curb weekday wine consumption or give up sugar. And the more we move, the more freedom we have around sips and nibbles … right? Well by now you’ve likely caught wind of the activity tracker craze and have at least one friend who is extolling the virtues of one device or another that measures steps and stairs and sleep and mood.

Activity trackers have inundated the fitness market as tools to keep you moving, motivated, and accountable. And they do change how you think about movement. I’m sure I’m not the only wearer who would admit to odd behaviour change in the name of logging extra steps. Since I got my first fitness tracker I’ve been known to crank out 10 p.m. stair-climbs, hallway runs and jumping jacks if I’m about to hit my steps goal for the day. And I have found myself choosing the stairs or taking a longer route just to see my numbers climb. That’s never a bad thing.

As a bit of a fitness geek I decided to look into a few of the markets top-rated fitness trackers, test them against my day-day-day activity and give you the low-down – Michelle-style – on what I like (and dislike) about each, and why. There are literally dozens of trackers to choose from but for the sake of simplicity, I will be sharing my views on three of the most popular on the market:

Jawbone UP

Nike Fuelband+

FitBit Force

I’ve been wearing all three (and yes, that has been a bit awkward and fashion-flawed) and I’m keen to tell you what I’ve discovered. In my next post I’ll share my side-by-side comparison of all of them and then tell you my straight-shooting thoughts on highs, lows and everything in between.

In the meantime, are you a fitness tracker geek? If you are, I’d love to hear from you. Which do you use, what do you like (or not like) about it and how has your tracker helped you move more?

Thanks for you time. I’m a few steps off my goal for the day so I think I’ll go take Lilly for a walk.

Lilly Winter