Don’t expect a magic wand
It’s vital to approach your new fitness gadget with the right mindset. Just because you’ve strapped a tracker to your wrist doesn’t mean you’re going to get fit. What you’ve got is a tool, and if used correctly, it can be a brilliant aid for motivation.
But it’s not a replacement for your own desire to succeed. Just like the rowing machine, set of free weights or yoga mat you bought, if you don’t interact with it, it won’t help. If you accept from the outset that the hard work and habit changing is still down to you, you’ll have more success.
Forget the calorie count
Fitness tracker calorie counts are inaccurate. Most of them base your readings only on a few vital stats like age, gender, height and weight. This means the results you get aren’t representative of what’s actually being burnt in your body.
Pairing your device with a heart rate monitor, or choosing a tracker with a bpm sensor built in, can help to improve results but you need to approach the numbers with caution. Avoid using your fitness band to calculate how many calories you should consume each day, and certainly don’t add treats to your diet based on the idea you’ve burned more than the average calorie quoter for your gender.
Set your own daily goals
Most fitness trackers come with preset step goals. Your current lifestyle might mean you can hit these targets with ease. But we all know doing what you’ve alway done isn’t going to bring about the change you’re looking for. Use the tracker for a week and see how you compare and then change the targets to be more demanding.
At the same time make a list of the times during your day when you realistically have the opportunity to add in more steps. This will help you understand where you might need to make bigger changes for greater impact