My husband sent me a medical journal article (yep he reads these things, claims it is part of his education). I would love to be able to link it for all of you but you have to have a subscription.
Anyway the article talked about how fitness trackers are preventing weight loss, at times causing weight increase, and this is especially true for minorities.
As I read the article I realized there were some big mistakes in the way people are using fitness trackers and there are the same mistakes that are made by people trying to exercise to lose weight. So here is why I think your fitness tracker may be making you fat and what you can do about it.
You look at the number of calories you burned during the day and decide you can have a bowl of ice cream, or some chips. You do this everyday!
Use your calories to fuel your workouts. Eat real, whole foods when you are hungry. Find healthier ways to get a treat and eat that treat a few times a week.
You see you got your 10,000 steps in on your morning run and you sit the rest of the day.
Regular movement throughout the day will help keep your body burning fuel. Aim for 250 – 500 steps every hour, even if you already hit your 10,000 step goal. Consider raising your step goal on days you run to 15,000 steps to encourage this movement as meeting a goal encourages me to get moving.
Your forget the weights as steps are the only thing that matters. Walking is a great form of exercise. But adding a free weight lifting routine will help with long term fat burning!
Lift weights. Do a free weight routine 3 times a week for 20 minutes.
So how should we use our fitness trackers? I think we should use it to encourage more movement. To look at the fact that I sat for 2 hours straight yesterday and recognize that is not a healthy choice and I need to focus moving more often. To see that I average walking 11,000 steps a day and challenge myself to up that to 12,000 next week. To use it to make goals and meet goals.
And then make healthy food choices.
I think if we do that our fitness trackers will help us lose weight as they are designed.