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THE FITBIT BLOG

What’s in a Portion Size?

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Do you pay attention to portion size when calculating calories?

Week 2 of the Fitbit Healthy Habits challenge is about to come to an end! Today’s challenge is: Take note of portion sizes. If you need help finishing this challenge, we’re here for you.

If you’re paying attention to what you eat – or better yet, logging your food – you’re probably familiar with nutrition labels. They tell you how many calories and sugars and vitamins are in packaged foods, and you can look up nutrition info for your unpackaged foods like eggs or vegetables. But while you may or may not know that a morning bowl of cereal can be 130 calories, did you know that those 130 calories come from only 3/4ths of a cup of cereal?

So today’s challenge is actually pretty simple. You don’t need to pull out your measuring cups and start measuring out every meal, but do take a look at the nutrition facts of the foods you eat and make a rough guess at how many servings you’re having. Having a better understanding of what you’re consuming won’t necessarily make you healthier, but with that knowledge you can make better informed decisions and be more aware of your diet.

If you do want to become better about sticking to a serving size, there are ways to estimate it by looking at your food as well. One serving of meat, for example, is about the same size as a deck of cards, while a serving of fruit is roughly equivalent to the size of a baseball. And the last joint in your thumb is about the size of a teaspoon.

What do you pay attention to when choosing the foods you eat? Let us know in the comments.

Quinoa for Breakfast

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Today’s blog post comes from FitStar, part of the Fitbit family. FitStar Personal Trainer and FitStar Yoga are two top-ranked apps that offer personalized video-based exercises. You can find more FitStar recipes on the FitStar blog.

Recipe for Breakfast Quinoa

Quinoa is an incredibly versatile grain that packs a ton of protein and all of your amino acids for the day. It contains twice as much fiber as many other grains while also supplying a wide range of vitamins. Make a big batch at the beginning of the week and incorprotate it into breakfasts, lunches and dinners for days to come.

Ingredients 

1/2 cup organic quinoa, rinsed
1/2 cup water
1/2 cup milk (or vegan milk alternative)
1/4 tsp cinnamon
1/8 tsp ground ginger (optional)
1 tablespoon of granola or roasted nuts of your choice
1/2 cup slices fresh strawberries
Honey to taste

Insturctions

1. Bring water to a boil. Add quinoa reduce to simmer.

2. After 7-10 minutes add milk, cinnamon and ginger. Continue to simmer for another 12-15 minutes, stirring regularly.

3. Once quinoa is cooked, add additional milk to your taste preference as you would with oatmeal.

4. Sprinkle with granola, honey and strawberries.

5. Enjoy!

What is your favorite way to make quinoa for breakfast? Share in the comments below!

Extreme User Story: How many steps does it take to get to the Kona IRONMAN?

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We’re constantly amazed by what Fitbit users can accomplish with their trackers. In our Extreme User series, we’ll be highlighting people who went above and beyond their usual goals to accomplish something great. You can read our last extreme user story here

Nicole finishes her first Ironman

Hi, I’m Nicole S. A wife, mother and IRONMAN. I spent months training for the IRONMAN World Championships at Kona this past October, my very first Ironman event. I raced in honor of my late father and was the official IRONMAN athlete of the Melanoma Research Foundation, taking on some seriously huge fundraising commitments to combat this seriously deadly cancer.

I’ve now resurfaced, recovered from the most excruciating physical challenge I’ve ever put myself through, thanked everyone and their mom (thanks mom!) for their support emotionally and financially, and have just now sat down to scroll through my Fitbit archives for a literal walk down memory lane.

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Fitbit Healthy Habits: Week 2

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Creating a healthy lifestyle is always worth it, but never easy. It can be tempting to try and tackle every every unhealthy thing in your life all at once. But studies have shown that our willpower is finite, so trying to change too many of your habits at once will at the very least make you exhausted, and at most cause you to burn out on staying healthy earlier. So we’d like to challenge each and every reader with bite-sized daily tips in the Fitbit #HealthyHabits challenge!

Healthy Habits Week 2: Nutrition

Week 1 is already over in the Fitbit Healthy Habits challenge! If you’re a little behind, don’t sweat it: you can view last week’s challenges here. You can do these challenges in any order you like, or as often as you like: just save or print out the checklist and follow along at your own pace.

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App Update: Use Facebook to Find Fitbit Friends

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Use Facebook Friend Finder on Fitbit

 

Now finding your friends on Fitbit is even easier! With the latest Fitbit app update, you can see which of your Facebook friends use Fitbit and add them to your Fitbit friend list right through the app.

Find your friends on Fitbit with Facebook Friend FinderMore friends means more motivation – compete with coworkers on the leaderboard, get your family moving with a Fitbit Challenge, and cheer on your BFFs when they reach their step goals. You can even see and share badges with your friends in the app. It’s no wonder Fitbit users with friends take 27% more steps!

Accessing your Facebook list is fast and easy. To get started, simply tap the ‘Friends’ tab in the Fitbit app and press the “+” in the top right corner. Then choose ‘Connect Facebook’ to view your Facebook contacts and add new friends. You can still add friends through your smartphone contact list or by email as well.

Make sure your app has the latest updates to get started today!

Keep Calm and Just Breathe

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How to practice equal breathing to reduce stress

For many of us, stress is a daily part of life. While we sometimes can’t cut out the source of the stress, we can work on controlling it and calming ourselves down. And one of the simplest ways to do so is also something you’re doing right now: breathing.

Breathing exercises have been credited with all kinds of health benefits, from changing blood pressure to influencing asthma. While the full benefits haven’t been studied at length in a clinical setting, breathing exercises have been practiced for centuries. And today’s Health Habits challenge is to try out one of the simplest forms: equal breathing.

Getting started is so simple you can try it right now as you read this article, or try it later as you try to fall asleep or are on your commute. Start by taking a slow, deep breath, and slowly count to four as you do. When your lungs are full, breathe out just as slowly, also while counting to four. The aim is to take slow, measured breaths where you’re breathing in for the same length of time as you’re breathing out.

If four seconds seems too long (or too short!), you can adjust the time to whatever you’re comfortable with.

So tell us: did you try equal breathing while reading the article? How did it make you feel?

Celebrity Trainer Harley Pasternak: 5 High-Sugar Foods to Avoid

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Harley Pasternak's 5 Foods High in Sugar

We’ve written before about avoiding sugar in your diet. But sometimes sugar can be found in the most unlikely of places. That’s why we asked celebrity trainer Harley Pasternak to share his top five list of foods surprisingly high in sugar:

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Bike Tracking Now Available on Fitbit Surge!

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Track your bike rides with Fitbit Surge

You asked for it, and we’re excited to announce that you can now track your outdoor bike rides with Fitbit Surge – the #1 Amazon best seller in running GPS units! If you’re looking to better understand your bike rides, the GPS tracking, PurePulse heart rate technology and advanced sensors in Surge now allow you to view your distance, duration, heart rate, average speed, and calories burned in real time, right on your wrist. As with other activities you track with Surge, your rides will also automatically sync back to your account so you can view your route, speed and a summary of your stats on your dashboard.

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Find Your Zen With These 7 Meditation Tips

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7 Tips for Meditation

We’ve just kicked off our Fitbit Healthy Habits series, and we’re excited for what the month will bring! To help out everyone hoping to get started with today’s challenge, meditate for 10 minutes, here are some tips to help you conquer day one.

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Find habits that stick with Fitbit Healthy Habits

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Create healthy habits this month

Creating a healthy lifestyle is always worth it, but never easy. Those first few months of getting up early to hit the gym or having to talk yourself up to putting your running shoes on can be a battle of willpower you don’t always win. But after awhile, what was once something you had to force yourself to do becomes second-nature. That’s when you know it has finally become a habit.

When it comes to developing a healthy lifestyle, it can be tempting to try and try and tackle every every unhealthy thing in your life all at once. But studies have shown that our willpower is finite, so trying to change too many of your habits at once will at the very least make you exhausted, and at most cause you to burn out on staying healthy earlier. So we’d like to challenge each and every reader with the Fitbit Healthy Habits challenge!

read more