When I first got my Fitbit Charge HR, I thought it was true love. It gave me a little buzz of encouragement for hitting my step goal. It reassuringly told me I was sleeping more than I thought I had been. I had a neat app that proudly displayed all my stats in a smug, I-hit-my-goal green. But after 6 months of solid use, I called it quits. It wasn’t the rewarding relationship I thought it was – it was an unhealthy one.
Now, I have to admit, I did tell a few lies to my clients about why I stopped using my Fitbit. At first, whenever anyone asked about its absence I’d say it was charging and they’d sympathetically shake their heads at all the steps I would “miss” that day. Then I just said it was broken. Partly I didn’t want to discourage my clients from using what was, for them, a really motivating tool.
But I also felt slightly ashamed that I was a part of the statistic that had “failed” at Fitbit: this study of 800 people found that just 10% were still using their Fitbit after 12 months.
But I had my reasons for ending it; it was negatively impacting my mental and physical health.
- I was getting really hung up on hitting all my stats. If I met my step goal on every day except one, even if I only missed it by 100 or so steps (which, in terms of my health and fitness was inappreciable) it meant that there would be one bar that wasn’t green and it really bothered me. I felt guilty and like I’d let myself down.
- The sleep tracking was totally off. It would tell me I was asleep when I knew that I wasn’t. Like if I got up to go to the bathroom in the middle of the night, it just didn’t seem to register I’d been awake. It also wouldn’t pick up on me being asleep for about two hours after I’d gone to bed.
- I would find myself walking less or not exercising if I didn’t have my Fitbit on. I felt like if it wasn’t going towards my stats, what was the point?
- It was ugly and bulky and uncomfortable. It was especially uncomfortable when sleeping, and the bulkiness made it hard to get my arm through the sleeves of some of my smaller jackets. And did I mention it was ugly? I mean, it was just an eyesore.
- The calorie count was way off. I knew it was off, but I’d treat it as an excuse to overeat. I knew there was no way I had burned 3000 calories but I still found myself overeating and thinking it was okay because I was “under budget.”
If you love your Fitbit, power to you. I’m happy it’s working for you. I don’t miss my Fitbit and I don’t think I’ll ever go back to using it.
If you’ve been through a Fitbit-quit like me, or you’re still a devotee – I’d love to hear from you in the comment section! What made you stop using it? What do you love about it?