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THE FITBIT BLOG

4 Healthy Holiday Food Substitutes

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pumpkin pie copy

I’m so encouraged. Rather than viewing the holidays as a time of unbridled indulgence, then post-indulgence guilt, most people (and hopefully this includes you) are starting to rein it in.

Here at Foodtrainers, rather than clients going MIA until January, they are signing up for our Foodstalking program where we have daily email check-ins. And let’s be clear—I’m not here to insist that you avoid your favorite treats. Rather, I’m suggesting you stick to just those.

So if you’re in the healthy holiday camp, here are my “glutton free guidelines.” read more

Keeping Fit During the Busy Season

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Walking up stairs

Between holiday preparations like shopping and cookie-baking, family time, and bad weather, there are so many excuses not to work out this season. In fact, December is the least active month of the year for Fitbit users! Unfortunately, this is also a time of year when we tend to overindulge in the sweets and eggnog. After all, we’re all going to get healthy next month, right? Wrong: if you’ve ever successfully completed a New Year’s resolution before, studies have shown that you’re in the minority.

We know you’re busy, but here at Fitbit we’re all about creating a lifestyle that works for you even when taking 2% of your day to get fit sounds like too much. So today we’re focusing on fitting in fitness wherever you can.

  1. Short & sweet is better than none: So maybe you don’t have time to go on a 5-mile walk. Or a 1-mile walk. Or… you get the picture. But even if all you can do is get up and take a lap around the block — or even the house — make the commitment to at least do that every day. You can always increase your workout length if time allows, and as long as you don’t let your exercise time diminish to zero you can go to bed each night knowing that you did something.
  2. Take the stairs: If you’ve been reading our blog for a while, you know that by taking the stairs you’re upping your efficiency by burning about 5x more calories. And while it can be tempting to hop into an elevator or step onto the escalator, you need to get up to the next floor one way or another. So why not count it toward that day’s workout?
  3. Exercise during phone calls: One benefit to cordless phones? You can pace while getting work done! Turn phone time into fit time by walking around or stretching while talking.
  4. Think quality, not quantity: One way to maximize your workouts all year long is to be as efficient as possible with the time you have. If you can manage a run instead of a walk, go for it. Or if you can handle a 15-minute high-intensity workout, try that instead of the same old workout routine you’re used to. Search online for “15-minute workout” or even “4-minute workout” and you’ll come up with plenty of options that can work for you.
  5. Be prepared to eat healthy: Fast food is popular for a variety of reasons, but you can find the same quick and easy meals in your own home if you plan ahead. Be sure to keep your fridge stocked with healthy foods that are easy to turn into a meal, and don’t underestimate the power of a slow cooker.
  6. Turn everyday tasks into mini-workouts: Even when you’re busy there are certain things that you get done each day that involve standing around, like brushing your teeth or doing the dishes. Take these moments to fit in some exercise by doing squats, balancing on one foot, or pressing onto your toes for a calf workout. If you really want to step it up, try doing some of these lunge variations while walking around the house!

How are you keeping fit this season? Let us know in the comments!

 

6 Science-Backed Ways to Stop Overeating During the Holidays

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Useful Science is a nonprofit run by 65 grad students and professionals. The author of this post is Greg Traversy from the University of Ottawa. The most recent Useful Science post was about improving your life. Email them at hello@usefulscience.org.

Are there factors outside of our body – in the environment, for example – that influence how much we eat at a given meal? The short answer is yes, and they can make us eat more regardless of our feelings of hunger. Here is a list, with the science to back it up, of environmental factors that can cause us to eat more than we normally would.

And for each bit of science, we’ve provided a tip to help you counteract the science and avoid the overeating temptation especially during the upcoming holidays. So let’s go…

 

A variety of flavors makes us eat more read more

These Artists Turned Fitbit Data into a Connected Canvas

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IAMI image blog

The artistic duo LigoranoReese have been collaborating as a team on amazing projects since the mid 1980s. But Nora Ligorano and Marshall Reese’s latest exhibit is a phenomenal, interactive self-portrait derived from Fitbit and psychological data.

To say we were intrigued by the exhibit is an understatement—so we caught up with the artists to learn exactly how the idea came about and all the intricate work that went into each portrait. Read on for the full interview.

And if you’re local to the San Francisco Bay area, you can see I•AM•I in person at the Catharine Clark Gallery until January 3, 2015. Here’s how to find out more about the exhibit.

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Rocco Dispirito: Training, Holiday Eating & Staying Active with Fitbit

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rocco 1

We’re super excited to have award winning chef and best-selling author, Rocco Dispirito, on board as our latest Fitbit ambassador. You surely know Rocco from shows such as Extreme Weight Loss, The Biggest Loser and Restaurant Divided…and have read one of his many highly acclaimed cookbooks.

Rocco has made it his life’s work to prove that healthy and delicious are not mutually exclusive. To that end, he created an innovative fresh food delivery service sought after by celebrities, fans and foodies alike. read more

5 Hottest Food Trends for 2015

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Grapefruit

I’m conflicted on the topic of food trends. On one hand I live, breathe and sometimes dream nutrition (pathetic I know). I love to scope out what’s new or innovative, even on the fringe.

On the other hand, I roll my eyes over kale’s overexposure as the “it” vegetable. It’s almost Kardashian-like. Enough, right? If I am forced to pick sides—new or same-old—I’m going with the latest and the greatest.

And so, I bring you five hot food trends coming up in 2015. read more

Fitbit Success Stories: Bryce P.

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bryce success story

Growing up, I was a multi-sport athlete in excellent shape. Over the last 10 years, I really let my fitness get away from me. Life happened. I allowed myself to slip using my busy life at work and home as an excuse for my poor to non-existent fitness. On December 26th, 2013 I stepped on the scale. I didn’t really weigh myself regularly so in my mind, I was still athletic and in shape. The number astounded me: 277 pounds.

At that moment, I drew a line in the sand and began my mission to get back into shape and reclaim my health. read more

The 2014 Fitbit Holiday Gift Guide

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2014FitbitGiftGuide Blog

Click on image to expand

It’s December. And you know what that means: it’s holiday gift guide time, y’all! With all the products in the Fitbit family, you may be thinking, “What Fitbit product is best for the active peeps in my life?”

Fear not—we’re here to help. Enter the 2014 Fitbit Gift Guide, designed specifically to map your path to the perfect holiday Fitbit gift. So click on the image above for the full-size version and have at it.

You can purchase your Fitbit products right here, including the brand new Fitbit Charge. And don’t forget, we have a limited-time-only selection of new Fitbit apparel—get it before it’s gone!

Answer These 5 Questions to Avoid Thanksgiving Weight Gain

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turkey

Plenty of statistics can tell you what the average person will eat on Thanksgiving or the average amount of weight people gain. But from my many nutrition sessions over the years, I do know a few things about the average person who packs on the pounds over the holidays.

This average person says things like, “Holidays only come once a year,” or “Everything in moderation,” and then proceeds to eat everything not so moderately. And sometimes these average people conveniently miss appointments this time of year.

But you’re better than average right? You’re not going to partake in the pie-a-thon just because others do, right? You’re going to finish your holiday meal on Thursday with no need to “unbutton” or take an immediate nap. And if you’ve been a gainer in past years, have no fear— your Foodtrainer is here. Answer these five questions to “plan it thin.” And make sure to stick to your scale schedule with your Fitbit Aria. read more

Fitbit Inspiration: Jennifer C.

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Tough Mudder image

Running isn’t a hobby it’s a career, and on February 27, 2014 my career got a little more interesting. That was the day I got invited to join a work group to complete Tough Mudder.

In the beginning, I was thrilled telling myself that it’s just like some of the other obstacle races I had run, only longer. At the time, I was averaging 10K steps per day, using my Fitbit Zip to calculate each move I made.

With only seven months to train, I knew I had my work cut out for me. My primary goal was just getting up to a 12-mile run, about three times longer than my usual distance. Each week I added 1K steps to my run until I hit my 12-mile goal, I then decided to make it a little more challenging.

My weekends began to fill with 10-mile trail walks on Saturdays and 12-mile trail runs on Sundays. At this point, two months before Tough Mudder, I felt I was trained and ready to go. But then I started browsing the race website and quickly realized: I was not ready.

My Zip pushed me to get gradually increase my steps/distance, betting my time and training.

Needless to say, I increased my workout intensity lifting weights, swinging kettlebells, kickboxing, and completing various core workouts to increase my upper body and core strength as quickly as possible. The ultimate goal was preparing for a Tough Mudder obstacle called Everest—a quarter pipe climb covered in mud and grease. With just one month to train for this terrifying climb,  the one tool that I used the most was my Zip.

I found the highest hill near my house and ran all-out wind sprints. I started with just a few feet, but gradually increased to sprinting the entire hill and back several times. My Zip pushed me to get gradually increase my steps/distance, betting my time and training.

On the morning of race day, I was nervous and excited. At 9am we were on the road and by 10am, at the starting line to the Tough Mudder in Montgomery City, MO. In the back of my pants was a zipper pouch where I had my most reliable tool, my Fitbit, in two plastic bags hoping that it would survive along with me on our 12-mile obstacle race.

With my husband by my side, we completed one obstacle after another—even one where I had to carry him 500 feet!

We jumped in the arctic enema (think tank full of ice water) diving underwater, shaking as I moved through the ice bath to the opposite side.

The final obstacle—a muddy sprint through a barrage of hanging, electrically charged wires—stood between me and the finish line. With a couple shocks to my frame, I crossed the finish line, hoping my Zip was still in one piece.

Through all the mud, water, and obstacles both me and my trusty Zip and survived. It tracked all 12 miles, validating one of the most physically challenging days of my life.

It’s amazing what a person can accomplish by overcoming your fears with the tools and team to help achieve your goals.