Health Tech: FitBit Gives the Gift of Data

Health Tech: FitBit Gives the Gift of Data


I first met my FitBit when our office manager gave each of us one to wear. The device came in a colorful package with directions on how to start an online account, which, upon sign-in, produced a rainbow of graphs, weekly rankings, and goals.


At first I was a little bit afraid of all of those graphs and numbers. Did I really want to know how many steps I took in one day? What if the numbers were lower than I thought? The device also tracked sleep. I was worried.


Yet, as time went by, the FitBit won me over. A hardy little device, it survived accidental dips into water, as well as day upon day of riding along on my belt. Though occasionally I thought my sleep and exercise rates were terrible, FitBit helped me stay on track. 

Overall the FitBit was fun, it allowed us to keep track of our steps, and it made the reality of a day’s work more clear. Some of my peers averaged well over 10,000 steps a day, which stacks up to 5 miles. On the FitBit’s screen, a small flower began to sprout if enough steps were taken.

The data made sense, and it was quite a revelation. When I came home and felt like I’d just run a race, well, it wasn’t too far from the truth! On one extremely busy day, I racked up a half-marathon worth of miles.


For a patient or peer who can take the truth, I’d recommend a FitBit in a heartbeat. It provides information that you can act upon. I may not recommend it for someone like my grandpa, however, who is convinced that he walks three miles a day, when in reality, he may be walking only one. Not everything has to be tracked in order for it to be a source of health.  If data can offer motivation, it’s priceless.

 Though FitBit is by now a classic pedometer, a few other types of pedometers have sprung up around the FitBit’s success that can offer the same metrics. Nike+ gives a great option if you’re a runner. You can buy them online or at sports outlets, and they’re also easy to find on sites like eBay. 

I hope this blog takes you on a great journey through the world of health. Do you know anyone who uses a FitBit or Nike+ ? What are your thoughts?