Activity Trackers And Me

OK, let me just start by saying I have a bit of a shopping addiction. I have in under control (mostly) but I’m kind of an impulse purchase type of girl. If it’s new and it’s trendy, I’m probably paying attention. You may have seen my post the other day about wearable vibrators … I’m not embarrassed to tell you I pre-ordered mine. I mean, how could I resist?

I’m lucky enough to have disposable income and no hefty financial responsibilities other than myself and my mortgage, so I play it a little fast and loose sometimes. Which is why when the Fitbit Flex was announced in 2012, I pre-ordered one of those bad boys too. I was trying to get healthier and did my research on the different wrist trackers out there – I really wanted one that was compatible with MyFitnessPal and I liked the idea of a bracelet. And even though I think some of the other options were more stylish, I went with the Flex because it met all of my needs.

Only problem was that by the time it arrived, I had shattered my ankle and had major surgery. I was on crutches for three months and in physical therapy for months after that. I wasn’t so much concerned with tracking my steps as I was being able to make them at all.

Fast forward a few months and I finally got excited about my activity tracker again. And by then, the Flex was popular enough that a lot of my friends had gotten one as well. It was a great way to track which days we were really moving enough and personally, I found the sleep tracker really eye opening as well.

They’re not for everyone, I get it. And just because I own one doesn’t mean I’m getting my 10,000 steps a day like I know I should. But it does help keep me accountable. And small changes and improvements are better than no changes at all. As I type this, mine is laying dead and sad in the bathroom – I have been slacking lately and need to throw it back in the charger. Baby steps.

Anyway, I really like it except for the fact that it’s not the fashion statement I would typically choose to make. I ordered the bright pink replacement band, and that helps some. But I’m not ready to shell out the hundreds of dollars for the designer Fitbit bracelets that are just hitting the market and I just wish it looked better sometimes.

And then I saw this pop up in my news feed on Facebook today: Cuff Activity Tracker

I was weak guys. I clicked. And it was kind of awesome. Admittedly, the basic cuff band looks similar to my Flex, but what I’m really excited about are the other bracelet options. Which actually look like – wait for it – BRACELETS. Not just a rubber wrist band, but stylish arm candy.

cuff2

photo via The Verge

Now that’s not really enough to sucker me into trying this out and comparing it my Flex. I don’t need two trackers. BUT, the element that really caught my attention is the emergency alert feature. Basically, you press a button on the bracelet, and it sends out an SOS.

From the Cuff site:

The Cuff app will alert the people you designate as your “first responders” when you need help. You can program one person or your entire Facebook network as your “first responders.” Cuff will send your SOS to the people you choose, and it will not stop until someone responds. Your designated people will receive your location, live audio, and other relevant information to get you (or your loved one) the help you need.

This appeals to me as a woman. Which I know is exactly what they were going for – just call me the ultimate consumer. I have probably watched one too many episodes of Criminal Minds, but I do think about what I would do in the whole “trapped in the trunk of a car without my phone” scenario. You know, after I peed myself.

For single women out at the bars or walking to their cars alone at night, it’s not a bad idea, even if it was designed as a marketing hook. As someone who carries a taser because I’ve been followed/threatened once or twice, I’m probably a little more aware of these things. But I have to say, it has me considering a test run. If it can hold up to the functionality of my Fitbit while offering more stylish options and a “get out of trunk free” card, I might be switching teams.

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