With the evolution of highly portable gadgets such as fitness trackers, it has become extremely easy to monitor your daily activities for weight loss purposes, or perhaps maybe, for the sole purpose of leading a healthy lifestyle. Lately, these gadgets have been touted by health experts as the “next big thing” in the fitness realms, however, don’t rush to the store and grab the first wrist-tracker you come across just yet, as it all boils down to the specific model you settle for – similar to most fitness equipment and accessories. The bottom line, though, is that the latest generation fitness trackers come packed with a plethora of great, futuristic features that work comprehensively to keep you motivated and fit.
That in mind, it is worth noting that there is an infinite number of great fitness trackers on the market, and while most may not track everything you do, you are likely to find one that covers your direct needs and more importantly, at affordable prices. Before heading out, though, it would be advisable to consider some essential factors ranging from your direct fitness needs, down to the budget you have set aside for the cause. Therefore, before we go through the options you have, let’s dwell on some of the crucial aspects you need to scrutinize, before parting with your hard-earned bucks.
The Ultimate Fitness Tracker Buyer’s Guide:
If you are really serious about shedding off that excessive belly fat or keeping fit for the overall good of your health, ask yourself what exactly is worth tracking in your life by getting to the root cause of your health condition. Maybe you just want to stay enlightened on the calories burnt on a daily basis or perhaps, the distance covered when walking to and from the office. If this is the case, a basic fitness tracker will do just fine. Conversely, if you seek a sophisticated gadget with detailed tracking abilities such as heart-rate monitors, it would be in your best interest to check out the latest generation trackers.
Generally speaking, most people are usually serious about losing weight and in fact, even go the extra mile in incorporating “a health clause” in their New Year resolutions. However, the desire and motivation quickly dissipate as the year unravels and slowly, the zeal to jog an extra mile or even walk after work disappears completely – sounds familiar? If you lie under this category, fret not, because there are great fitness trackers out there designed to keep you motivated year round. There are gadgets have been simply designed for those that need that slight push every day, to get started on their quest for healthy living. In a nutshell, these “motivators” allow you to set daily targets which you must meet or else, face the wrath of the resilient alarm vibrations or conversely, award you badges if you meet them.
Finally, the battery life of a fitness tracker is something that most tend to overlook, but extremely important in the long-term. I’m usually not a fan of charging devices and those that concur can benefit from purchasing a tracker that lasts months without needing any recharge. What’s the point of having a gadget lying at home while out jogging, anyway? Now that you are aware of the features that make a good fitness tracking device let’s dive right in and have a look at the best gadgets currently trending, to help you join the fitness bandwagon in style.
The Best Fitness Trackers under All Budgets:
Our Pick for the Best Fitness Tracker Overall –The Garmin Vivoactive Fitness Tracker – $200:
Garmin is a reputable brand renowned for producing some of the most reliable fitness trackers in recent years and the Vivoactive, well, just goes to confirm this. It is basically a waterproof Smartwatch’ of some sorts, used for a number of great tracking applications including GPS! As if that’s not cool enough, the watch/tracker also allows you to control the music playlist on your phone – which technically means you don’t have to get it (your phone) out of your pocket, just to enjoy your favorite tunes while out jogging. Technology-wise, it is the futuristic watch that virtually does everything you want it to do. Here’s an in-depth look at the key features that make the Vivoactive such a great investment for those on a tight schedule, every day, all day long.
The Specs and Features:
Touchscreen Watch? – Yes, the Garmin pace-setting product comes packed with a sensitive and convenient touchscreen face that lets you pick specific activities you wish to embark on, such as swimming, golfing, running and even biking among others. Swiftly swipe your way from one task to the next in simplistic fashion and for the swimming enthusiasts, it is fully waterproof.
Personal Touch – most fitness trackers or wristbands come pre-customized, meaning what you see, is simply what you get. With the Garmin Vivoactive, though, you are encouraged to customize its comprehensive look and layout using Connect IQ, so as to personalize it to your preferences and routines. In short, you can place all essential apps on the main screen to keep you updated on tennis scores for instance, or perhaps logging where you’ve parked your car just in case you forgot after an intense workout session.
Essential Metrics – besides the great features above, it is a fitness tracker that is effective at doing what fitness trackers are meant to do – summing up essential metrics for health and fitness progression. With the Vivoactive, you get detailed displays of all the basics, including your calorie count, distance covered step counts and sleep quality.
Personal Motivation – those that need a source of inspiration every once in a while can certainly benefit from investing in the Vivoactive thanks to smart features that constantly remind you why exactly you should get busy and stop lazing around. The smart notifications, Google up fast to keep you abreast on helpful motivational quotes and tips to keep you going.
- Well, everybody wants to look good even while jogging and therefore, an aesthetically pleasing fitness tracker is a plus by all means. The Garmin is simply eye-candy for those that need to stay fit, in style. It comes in a wide array of colors to go with your outfit too! The snow white version of the Vivoactive, in particular, tickled my fancy.
- The fact that it is waterproof means that you can track all your swimming activities without having to worry about ruining the convenient touch screen face. Also, not all fitness trackers come with GPS features, but that said, this is not your regular fitness tracker.
Unfortunately, the Vivoactive doesn’t incorporate a built-in heart-rate monitoring device, as is the norm with some of the watches in its caliber. However, it entails just about everything else you would need in a superior fitness tracker. While at it, the battery life is also nothing to write home about; especially if you wish to use the GPS features for long periods.
When it is all said and done, the Vivoactive just proved why exactly it is the top dog in as far as fitness gadgets go. At just $200, it is quite a catch and if fitness really ranks high on your list of priorities, investing in the Garmin Vivoactive is certainly not a bad idea after all.
Our Pick for Best Fitness Tracker Under $150 – The Fitbit Charger HR:
If you have been closely keeping an eye on the latest fitness trackers on the market, the chances are that you have likely come across a product by FitBit. The dynamic manufacturer has grown over the years to become a leading fitness tech giant with tons of great trackers to prove its worth. In a nutshell, the Charger HR comes packing a comfortable 21 mm wide strap, with OLED display to project your daily progress. It is strikingly stylish and just in case you needed an accessory to go with your violet top; it comes in two unique colors including a dashing violet hue that’s bound to score you points anywhere. To get a better idea of what I’m talking about, let’s have a look at some of its key features and specs.
The Specs and Features:
OLED Display – the small, monochrome, OLED display featured on the charger HR is designed to effectively project all essential metrics such as calorie count, step count, and distance. To save the battery life, it will switch off when not in use, but you can easily activate it by simply tapping the screen twice or pressing the button on the side.
Sync to Mac or Windows PC – to get the most out of your workouts or daily exercise routines, FitBit incorporated a convenient Bluetooth 4.0 device that can be easily synced with your Smartphone, Windows or Mac PC. However, downloading the official FitBit app on your smartphone is more convenient,more so for those always on the move.
Extended Battery Life – while the first and second generation FitBit gadgets were great, they couldn’t be relied upon to keep you updated for long. With this, the manufacturer went back to the drawing board and worked on an efficient battery for the HR which can last a week when fully charged. It only takes 2 – 3 hours to fully juice it up, hence worry not if you are always in a rush to meet goals.
- Like stated earlier, it is a tremendously stylish gadget and its aesthetic features have to be the main reason behind its sudden popularity even with celebrities. The fact that it comes in two unique colors also makes it ideal for most personalities.
- Tired of callers always disrupting your jogging sessions? The HR solves this problem by allowing you to sync it with your phone, so as to notify you on who’s calling – complete with the caller ID. You now don’t have to keep getting your phone out of the pocket every time it rings.
If you are looking out for a sophisticated tracker with advanced features such as GPS or heart-rate monitoring, this is not the product to procure. However, it entails all the paramount basics required to lead a healthy and fit lifestyle which is the main idea anyway.
When it comes to performance, you can rely upon the HR to provide you with all you need, for significant progress in your quest for fitness. At just $ 149, you have no excuse at all to get out of shape.
1- The Best Fitness Tracker Under $100 – The Withings Go:
The French Company has a knack for crafting unique trackers, with an elegant, classic twist, which is rare in the futuristic-oriented field. For starters, it is basically a watch that comes with all paramount features entailed in fitness trackers and hence making it one for that matter. Like most basic gadgets, it will monitor your sleep quality, count your daily steps and display the distance you cover in a day – all this while maintaining a unique classic watch-vibe to keep your quest discreet if you so wish. Let’s have a look at some of the product’s key features.
The Specs and Features:
E-Ink Screen – the E-Ink is an authentic concept that the company came up with to extend the battery life, and hence, don’t have to stay off even for a single second. Moreover, the innovative concept also enhances its performance regardless of weather condition – hot or wet. If you click on the center of the display, the device will switch to a standard watch; click it again, you have a meter activity tracker monitoring your activities.
Automated –unlike most trackers where you have to click on something just to activate the tracking features, the Withings GO comes fully automated. This means that it will automatically recognize your activities and even switch to sleep analysis mode when you jump into bed. This is great, especially for those always on a busy schedule.
Extended Battery Life – those that hate charging devices can confide in the fact that this tracker’s battery can last up to a record 8 months without requiring any replacement. It uses an effective standard watch button cell which is known to be extremely durable.
- Sometimes, you just want your wrist to rest and not have anything strapped to it. If you concur, it is worth noting that the tracker can be worn in a number of ways including the wrist. Just detach the straps and place it in your pocket or simply tuck it on your waistline. This is quite beneficial more so for those on a discreet quest for fitness.
- Another great advantage is that it is water resistant up to 50 meters. Whether you are out caught up in the rain or perhaps working on a task that requires plenty of water, fret not, as it will remain effective regardless.
- Finally, the tracker allows you to set daily goals which, if met, will award a star on the middle icon. Usually, it will just display a stick person when the day starts and as you progress, so will the 88 bar segments on the E- Ink display. Did I also mention that it comes in five colors – blue, black, yellow, green and red?
Unfortunately, this is not the gadget to go for if you seek fancy displays or sophisticated features. It doesn’t incorporate features such as heart-rate monitoring or GPS. However, Withings products don’t come cheap and going by its affordable price, it is more than enough to get you started.
All said, this is an another quality product from a reputable brand. If you are a health enthusiast, you must be aware of just how great Withings products are and this is no different regardless of its somewhat cheaper price tag. It is a great place to start, especially for the discreet personalities that just want to stay fit without creating a fuss about it.
2- The Best Fitness Tracker Under $50 – The Fitbit Zip Wireless Activity Tracker:
Tired of all the wrist trackers on our list? Well, here’s one for you. It is one of the rare few trackers that don’t need to be worn on the wrist. The little square device can be clipped virtually anywhere – on your jeans, shirt and even sneakers! Like all fitness trackers, it is effective at tracking the basics ranging from your step count, to distance traveled and calories burnt while at it. Here are some reasons why you should consider checking out the Zip Wireless.
The Specs and Features:
Water Resistant – some workouts can get pretty intense, that the sweat excreted can affect the performance of a fitness tracker. The Fitbit Zip, however, comes in a waterproof casing to keep it working in optimal fashion regardless of sweat, weather or situation. Now, you can jog in the rain without having to worry about damaging your fitness companion.
Sync to Computer – a good fitness tracker is defined by how effective it is at providing essential health metrics and stats, for progression. With the Fitbit Zip, you can connect to your computer through a wireless platform, so you can have a look at what exactly you need to do, so as to improve or better yet, compete with friends online.
- The Zip is well-crafted and one outstanding feature it bears over the competition is a convenient screen that makes it easy to monitor progress. In a nutshell, it is a basic, user-friendly fitness tracker with all the basics you need to lead a healthy lifestyle.
- Generally speaking, most great fitness trackers on the market currently are wrist trackers. The Fitbit model opted to retain an old-fashioned look that’s not only convenient but unique as well. It is arguable one of the most user-friendly tracker, you can get your hands on.
The Zip wireless is not the tracker for those yearning a sophisticated gadget with fancy features to show for. However, it is good at doing what it is designed to do and that’s simply to ensure that you lead a healthy lifestyle.
All said, the Fitbit Zip is a great device that comes at an affordable price that’s actually a bargain. If you are just getting started on your quest, this is a good starting point that won’t burn holes in your pocket.
3- Our Pick for the Best Fitness Tracker Under $35 – The Jawbone Up Move:
Jawbone is a renowned activity tracker company that has been at it for a while now. During this period, it has managed to define its niche and amass immense popularity due to affordable gadgets such as the Up Move. Let’s have a look at its interesting features.
The Specs and Features:
Sync to Phone – the Smart Coach Up app is currently trending and with the Up Move, you can easily log in to have a look at your health profile. Through the app, you are also allowed to compete with friends or even obtain essential health information, at the click of a button.
Barcode Scanner – most fitness trackers in the Up Move’s price range are quite basic, with few features to show for. The Up move, however, entails an effective barcode scanner that allows it to log your daily calorie intake, besides giving essential health tips on better options.
- The Up Move deviates from the current wave of trending wrist devices to retain a casual clip appearance. With this, you can place it anywhere from the shirt, jeans, or even, shoes.
- It is available in four unique colors meaning you should easily find one that tickles your fancy. Expect the device to effectively monitor the calories you’ve burnt, steps taken, distance covered and sleep quality.
As good as it is, the Up Move lacks a screen to display your metrics in simplistic fashion like those above. However, this doesn’t mean it’s not effective in any way whatsoever.
In conclusion, this is the best cheapest fitness tracker you can own. It offers all the essentials and basics required to lead a lifestyle free of any issues.
Wrapping it Up:
Now that you have a rough idea of what to go for, it is paramount to keep in mind that the fitness trackers above, have been vigorously tested to make the cut. That said, you can expect to have a healthy time with the devices above.