Defecting to the dark side…

So after raving about how much I love my Fitbit Charge HR (and I still do) I have acquired an Apple Watch. This is a completely gorgeous piece of kit and I love it.

Yes I do use it mostly for the fitness components and I imagine we are a long way from using it to its fullest potential. Buying 1st generation may not always be a wise investment especially for something of this price but it is really rather scrummy.

What I haven’t done yet is pitch it up against the Fitbit Charge HR and see what differences there are but the one massive thing that Apple may have missed the boat on is the community support that you get with Fitbit. I do miss my “Workweek Hustle” and my “Weekend Warrior” challenges and the competitiveness it fosters. I am alone again in my daily mission to achieve goals with the Apple Watch. I also miss the graphics of heart rate when running although I have not bee able to run since I got the watch due to a severe calf strain.

I think that at some point I will wear both devices and see how they fare against each other but fornow I have put my Fitbit Charge HR to one side and am getting acquainted to my Apple Watch



Fitbit activity trackers

Ok so some of you may know that in March last year I bought myself a Fitbit One activity tracker. The idea was to use it to track how may steps I took each day and to encourage me to begin to increase my activity levels. I had been going to the gym for a few months but wanted to have something that allowed me to see statistics on what i was doing each day.

I love my Fitbit One. It is inconspicuous as I clip it to my bra strap. In my day job I am supposed to be bare from the elbow down so wrist wear is not practical much of the time. I don’t use it to monitor my sleep but I do use it for counting calories, steps and stairs climbed. I have linked it to My Fitness Pal and I record my dietary intake and these 2 things have really helped me to increase my fitness levels and lose some weight. I have not missed  a day of recording my steps walked since I bought my One (except 3 days where I forgot to charge it).

Fast forward to Christmas 2014 and Fitbit announce the release of the Fitbit Charge HR and Surge. Now I am an Apple geek and am very excited about the Apple watch but the Surge looked like a strong contender in upgrading my One. So what do I do, stick to my One, upgrade to Surge or wait for Apple watch?

Sadly, I am not good at waiting but I did manage to have a really good think about what I wanted from my activity tracker. I want a device that does not need to be charged every single day. I want to see how many steps I have taken and how many flights of stairs I have managed to walk up. I want to see what this looks like from a calories point of view and use it to manage my weight. I also run a couple of times a week and I wanted to be able to use it to record my runs and the stats from these.

This discounted the Apple watch pretty much straight away. My husband practically fell over when I told him I don’t want an Apple watch. Want and need are 2 separate things and I simply don’t need an expensive watch that has to be charged every night when I have a perfectly good iPhone 5S. Also, I have no doubt that 12 months after buying the Apple watch it will be superseded by the next version and within 2 or 3 years will be obsolete. This left the Fitbit Surge or staying with my One.

The Fitbit Surge looks like it may be quite big for my skinny little wrists and I am not supposed to have wrist wear on for my day job, so something this large would be impractical. What I like about the Surge is that it has GPS tracking for my runs. I then took a look at the Charge HR. Having heart rate monitoring interests me and was what attracted me to the Surge. This means no chest strap. So now the Charge HR is in the running as a contender for me to upgrade to.

Now I really really want the coloured straps (particularly tangerine or purple) and not the black one so I decided to wait until the coloured straps have been released before making my final decision, but then (as I so frequently do) I gave up waiting.

I finally decided on the Charge HR and the reasons for this are as follows. I am serious about my fitness but have apps on my iPhone that can do the work of some of the stuff the Surge does. I have Map my Fitness that has the GPS for my runs. It also gives me my splits etc so do I really need the Surge? My iPhone always comes on runs with me for my music so I can track my running routes using Map my Fitness. I have slim wrists and I think that the Surge will simply look to silly, The Charge HR will look better and is more acceptable for work. Charging is only around every 5 days and it gives me all the data I am after. So yesterday I became the proud owner of a new Fitbit Charge HR.

First impressions: I like a lot. I like that I can see all the stuff I have become used to over the past year with my One but now I have the added interest of seeing my heart rate. It has predefined heart rate zones based on 220 beat per min minus my age and for the moment I am not changing these. I like that my calorie burn increases in response to doing activity that increases my heart rate. I haven’t worked out yet if this will impact on my recording using other apps such as Map my Fitness. I wonder if I will end up recording something twice but I will see how things go. I am going to wear my One and my Charge HR together for a couple of weeks to compare steps but I don’t anticipate much difference. I do wave my arms around quite a bit when talking so it will be interesting to see if this makes a difference.

If I was a serious serious runner then I would be more likely to invest in a chest strap for proper heart rate monitoring but for me the Charge HR should be exactly what I need. I will let you all know how I get on over the next few weeks.


Mercury in retrograde

And boy don’t I know it. To say that June has been awful is an understatement. The only highlights have been my 2 girls birthdays; 1 at the beginning of June and the other at the end. The rest of this month can go do one quite frankly. Bring on July.

I hope the rest of you have had a good June. I managed to keep up with my running until this week. So far my personal best is 35:59, I hope to be able to knock another minute off that time but I am currently having a brief break from running as the physical symptoms of my stresses are very much present and I am in significant pain. This makes running very difficult so I am hoping a few days off will settle everything down.

Anyway that’s enough of that for now.



The running bug!

I have a confession. My name is Sam and I am addicted to running!!! There was a moment back there when I thought I would not be able to run as my hips and knees hurt so much but I stopped running for 6 weeks and just concentrated on walking and then 2 weeks ago I thought I would run for a couple of minutes to see how I went. 2 weeks later I have managed to run constantly for 33 minutes and have done my first 5K in 38:44 mins. 5 of them were at the beginning to warm up.

Now I have the running bug and I want to go out for a run all the time!

In 35 days I am doing Race for Life to raise money for Cancer Research. My aim is to run the whole distance. I would like to do it in 30 mins. Not sure if that is doable but I have a goal. 35 mins would be good 30 would be awesome.

If you would like to sponsor me please go here

Thank you


Music at the gym

I have joined one of the gyms locally in my effort to lose a bit more weight and generally get fit and tone up. When I was at school I loved running and really hope to be able to get back into some running but there is some work to be done first cos I am very out of condition.
So running on a treadmill can be quite tedious so I have my trusty iPod with my newly setup “gym songs” playlist and I thought I would share it with you. 44 songs in no particular order.

Take That – Affirmation
Pet Shop Boys – Always on my mind / in my house
Then Jericho -Big area
They Might Be Giants – Birdhouse in your soul
Soundgarden – Black hole sun
The Hoosiers – Cops and robbers
Pet Shop Boys – Domino dancing
Blue Oyster Cult – (Don’t fear) The reaper
Gorillaz – Feel good inc
Coldplay – God put a smile on your face
Def Leppard – Gods of war
The Hoosiers – Goodbye Mr A
Take That – Happy now
Pet Shop Boys – I want a dog
Pet Shop Boys – It’s alright
Take That – Kidz
Muse – Knights of Cydonia
Pet Shop Boys – Left to my own devices
The Killers – Mr Brightside
Electric Light Orchestra – Mr Blue Sky
Muse – Muscle museum
Muse – New born
Jay Z and Kanye West – Ni**as in Paris
Jay Z and Kanye West – No church in the wild
Muse – Panic station
Muse – Plug in baby
DB Boulevard – Point of view
Aphex Twin – Polynominal C
Take That – Pretty things
Pendulum – Propane nightmares
Mika – Relax, take it easy
The Hoosiers – Run rabbit run
The Beloved – Scarlet beautiful
Pendulum – Slam
The Killers – Somebody told me
Take That – SOS
The Beloved – The sun rising
The Hoosiers – The trick to life
Muse – Uprising
The Boo Radleys – Wake up boo
The Hoosiers – Worried about Ray
The Prodigy – 3 Kilos
Sneaker Pimps – 6 Underground
Rob Dougan – Clubbed to death

I am sure that this list will evolve over time but I quite enjoy my work outs at the moment listening to these. Are there any tracks I have missed?