thoughts health Mindfulness via Gadgetry

Monday, Dec 25, 2017 — 414 words

December can be a tough month. The temperature drops to uncomfortable levels. The sun is ever receding until that glorious winter solstice arrives, heralding its return. Oh yeah, and my birthday happens too.

On the ticker that counts the number of revolutions around the sun, I’ve watched it increment yet again. I’ve witnessed quite a few of those now. Enough that it should qualify as frequent flyer miles.

I’m at the age where I’m mindful of that ticker… I want to personally observe a lot more of those orbital ticks. Hopefully I can double my mileage. That means that I also need to start being mindful of the ticker in my chest too.

As a software developer by trade, I tend to like empirical data and tracking said data. I also tend to spend most of my days sitting in an office chair. Not the best thing for your health. So I decided to get one of these wearable fitness trackers you hear so much about.

There are a lot to choose from, and most of them have the functions I care most about. Heartbeat monitor, step counting, sleep tracker, hourly reminder to get off my ass. After looking at the options, it came down to two contenders: Apple and Fitbit.

I chose the Fitbit Alta HR (black, of course).

Fitbit Alta HR

While I doubt I’ll be the guy obsessing over “getting my 10,000 steps in!” I should now be able to better monitor my health (by some abstract metrics).

Why Fitbit instead of Apple Watch?

Those who know me might be surprised by my choice. They’d likely assume I’d just default to the Apple product. It’s understandable. I have an iPhone, a couple of iPads, and I’m writing this post on my MacBook Pro.

I’m not a blind fanboy, however. There are several reasons I chose my Fitbit. OK, three main reasons: Its battery lasts up to 7 days (a very big deal), it’s about a third of the cost, and it looks elegant compared to the other clunky wearables (Apple included).

That’s not necessarily an indictment of the Apple Watch. I think that they may have over extended themselves, adding too much functionality to the device. I’m not interested in having a fledgling computer strapped on my wrist. (That’s just personal preference, of course.)

We’ll see how it goes. Hopefully my new Fitbit will help me be more mindful of my activity level (or lack thereof).