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The right kind of fitness app or tracker can help you to stay motivated and accountable, particularly if you have GOALS that you want to achieve.



So what’s the difference with all this techie stuff?


Well, there are basically 3 types of tracking devices:

  • a smartwatch (e.g. Apple watch)
  • fitness tracker device (e.g. Fitbit / Garmin)
  • a fitness tracker app that you use on your smartphone (e.g. My Fitness Pal).



A fitness tracker is a band with sensors that relay data to your smartphone. It uses sensors to track your orientation, movement, and rotation. The device collects data and converts it into steps, calories, sleep quality and general activities you perform throughout the day. Some trackers have a sensor called ‘altimeter’ which measures your altitude, thereby tracking the number of flights of stairs you’ve climbed. A fitness tracker can easily figure whether you are running or spinning.  The alarm in the tracker reminds you about a range of things such as completing the number of steps, drinking enough water, standing, walking, sleeping at the right time and much more. Fitness trackers tend to be cheaper and smaller than smartwatches.


The smartwatch has a screen that is essentially an extension of your smartphone. It usually has all the same fitness tracking abilities that a fitness tracker has, along with other features such as music playing capability, ability to check texts, emails and even social media. Smartwatches tend to be larger and more expensive than the more simpler fitness trackers.

Over the last few years, however, the two devices have converged. Fitness trackers became more complicated, adopting screens and even the ability to show smartphone notifications, while smartwatches really leaned into the fitness side of things.


the most popular device for fitness tracking today, the Apple Watch is actually a smartwatch.
A fitness app turns your smartphone into a fitness tracker. The latest generation of smartphones has sophisticated accelerometer chips that work in the background. They are sensing movement all day and that data can be accessed by FITNESS APPS and converted into all-day step counts, exercise tracking and sleep tracking. However, they tend not to be quite as accurate as a fitness tracker/smartwatch and are bulkier to carry around.


So why do I want to track my fitness?


1. Get Accountable

Your fitness tracker/app will remind you every day to get in that physical activity and you therefore become accountable. If you get busy or simply forget, a reminder from your tracker will get you back on track. It can help you push a little harder when you are walking too!


2. Motivation

Another one of the advantages of fitness trackers is the visual progress. Your tracker can show you how many calories you’ve burned, how many steps you’ve taken, and how long you’ve been active. They can also remind you when you aren’t getting that activity.


3. Set Your Goals

Setting fitness goals is the best way to achieve those goals. With a fitness tracker, you can determine your daily progress as you work towards those goals. If you’re training for an endurance walk you can set a time limit and train to walk within that time. If you’re trying to lose weight, your tracker can show you that progress, too. Seeing your progress gives you the daily motivation to keep working to achieve these goals. That way, you’re moving forward with every walk.


4. Eating Healthy

Fitness trackers and apps don’t just track your workouts. They can also log your food and water intake. Remember, nutrition is just as important as working out when trying to achieve an active lifestyle. You can also see how your workouts and calorie intake align. That way, you know you’re losing weight or getting the daily calories you need to slay the day!


5. Track Your Sleep

According to the Mayo Clinic, adults need seven to nine hours of sleep. Getting those z’s can impact your metabolism, energy levels, mood, and cravings. One of the benefits of fitness trackers is data regarding your sleep. That way, you can make healthier choices to improve your sleep over time.


6. Monitors Heart Rate

Your tracker can also measure your pulse and heart rate. That way, you can also measure the intensity of your workout—and make sure you’re not overdoing it or that you are working hard for what you want to achieve.



For our ANNIVERSARY CHALLENGE this year, you will need to be able to log both STEPS and MILES to achieve your goals.

If you have an iPhone you can use the Apple Health app which will automatically record your step count. You can download the Google Fit app for Android phones to record step counts.

For tracking mileage, most of us use the Strava App and we have an NWW club on Strava which you can join to see each other’s activity. You can use this app on your fitness tracker, smartwatch or smartphone.


Tracy Reeve

Lead Instructor and Business Owner


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