Where Can I Buy The FitBit Ultra Wireless Activity Tracker?
You can buy the FitBit Ultra tracker from the FitBit Ultra website.
I’m in the UK and mine was shipped within one business day which was especially impressive as they offered free shipping.
Does The FitBit Ultra Wireless Tracker Work For Weight Loss?
It depends what you want it for.
Do you want to lose weight and become more active? If so, then it’s likely that it will work for you.
Ever since I bought one in mid June, I’ve been around 50% more active. Before acquiring the pedometer I would run regularly throughout the week but would do no additional exercise. Today, I will keep a keen eye on my FitBit dashboard to check how many steps I’ve taken over the course of the day.
If I’ve ran just under 10,000 steps then I’ll go out and walk for half an hour to try to reach the next level.
I can’t seem to rest until I’ve taken 10,000 steps.
Fitbit Active Score And Flower
The FitBit Ultra dashboard provides you with a daily activity score, as well as a flower that grows or wilts depending on how active you’ve been.
The flower displays on the screen of the FitBit itself and acts as a great incentive to continue working out.
For if you do not work out you will be responsible for the death of a virtual flower! How would you be able to sleep at night?
The Active Score is out of 1000, but it’s possible to surpass that if you’re really on fire. My best Active Score so far is 1020/1000. On that day I ran 12 miles and walked 3.
FitBit Ultra Battery Life And Base Station
According to the manufacturers the battery life of the FitBit is 5-7 days.
When I bought it I’d assumed that it would have to be charged via a power outlet. I was pleasantly surprised when I realised the base station charges via USB, which means I can plug it via the spare slot in my Apple Keyboard.
I haven’t had any problems so far with powering the FitBit. In fact the level indicator has yet to dip below half way and I maybe charge it for 2 hours a day.
The Fitbit Ultra Dashboard provides a battery level indicator for the gadget, so you can easily see how much juice is left in the mother. This is handy for reminding you to place the FitBit back in it’s dock.
FitBit Ultra Dashboard
Arguably the best feature of the FitBit is it’s dashboard.
From here you can see how many steps you’ve taken, miles you’ve travelled, floors you’ve climbed and calories you’ve burned over the course of the day.
The information is presented in such a way that it motivates me into wanting to go further each day! You can compare your performance to previous days or weeks by clicking on the little calendar at the top of the screen.
FitBit Ultra Badges And Achievements
It’s great fun collecting the activity badges that you receive once you’ve taken so many steps or climbed so many floors.
Here are the ones that I’ve amassed so far on my travels.
I will hit 20,000 steps sooner or later, trust me. One day last week I managed 19,500 steps. If I’d walked down to the shops and back I’d have easily hit the target.
The FitBit Ultra Integrates With The MyFitnessPal Food Journal Service
I sometimes use the food journal service MyFitnessPal to keep track of my daily caloric intake.
I was pleased to learn that the FitBit Ultra integrates seamlessly with the service.
To start the integration, go to the MyFitnessPal App in the Fitbit Gallery.
The setup process is simple and MyFitnessPal automatically detects your activities and also corrects the sometimes inaccurate calorie readings from the device.
FitBit Ultra Greeting
The Fitbit Ultra Pedometer is full of great little touches that make it well worth the retail price. You can turn any of the features on or off from the online Dashboard and can even set your own little personalised greeting that appears on the Fitbit Screen.
Since I’m easily amused I set my greeting to ‘TWAT’.
This had led to my FitBit encouraging me with such inspiring messages as ‘GO ON, TWAT’. ‘FASTER, TWAT!’.
Let’s face it, who am I to argue?
Are Pedometers Like The FitBit Good Value For Money If I Want To Get Fit Via Running Or Walking?
Definitely. If you think about how much money you’d spend on a gym membership over a year compared to the one-off purchase of a pedometer to measure your progress, then it’s tremendous value for money.
Pedometers encourage you to get outdoors more often instead of spending your free time in stuffy gyms. You can easily track how your fitness is improving by logging your steps taken each day and trying to improve upon it in the coming days.
The FitBit Ultra Tracker makes things even easier by connecting to the FitBit database and syncing your results automatically.
Ultimately it’s up to you whether you get true value for money. If you’re willing to turn your life around and to exercise more then the FitBit will encourage you to improve day on day.
Do Pedometers Work For Measuring Distances Covered In Walking And Running?
The FitBit Ultra can automatically detect when I’m running or walking and it automatically applies the correct stride length to my activity. When I first set the pedometer up I had to enter both my running and walking stride lengths to ensure I got the correct reading.
For anyone interested here are the details I entered. Bear in mind that I’m a 6′ 2″ man with a rather short stride (i.e. I’m a plodder).
The FitBit Ultra Is Quite Accurate For Running And Jogging
When I ran with the FitBit Ultra for the first time I found that it was wildly inaccurate.
This is because I did not calibrate it.
If you find that your results are way out as well, check my guide for calibrating your walking and running stride length for the FitBit below. It should help you out.
Once you’ve entered your correct stride lengths into your account settings, the device is typically accurate to within 0.05 miles over a 6 mile run and usually bang on the money.
It doesn’t have the same level accuracy as a GPS Watch, but what it does have is an excellent battery life and the capability to monitor your movements in places where there are no GPS signals available. This means that you’ll find more motivation throughout the day as the FitBit Ultra can track your activity levels whether you are indoors or outdoors.
You will feel rewarded at the end of a long hard day when you take the stairs instead of the elevator in work!
How To Calibrate The Fitbit Ultra If You Don’t Have A GPS Watch
This is easy!
Go to the Google Maps website and measure the distance from your house to your local store (or any other landmark nearby). Right click on your house and select ‘Directions From Here’ and then do the same on your target destination and select ‘Directions To Here’. Google Maps will automatically calculate the distance for you in miles.
Now that you know the distance, walk to your target and see how many steps it takes you to get there.
Let’s say that the distance you walked is 0.3 miles and you took 500 steps to get there. You work out your walking stride by converting miles to inches. Google will do this for you if you type in “0.3 miles in inches”
As you can see 0.3 miles is 19008 inches. Now divide 19008 inches by the 500 steps it took you to walk 0.3 miles. You can use Google as your calculator for this again.
That makes 38 inches. Since there are 12 inches in a foot, your walking stride is 3 foot and 2 inches. To find your running stride length, follow the exact same procedure only run!
Tip : For the best accuracy, select a longer distance to cover. Walking or running a mile will give you a very accurate indicator to your real stride length.
How Many Steps Does It Take To Make A Mile On A Pedometer?
It can vary based on my run.
At the minute my average is around 1,700 but it can go as high as 2,000 or as low as 1,500. This is because my foot strikes are reasonably inconsistent.
Fortunately my total number of steps even out over the course of a run. For a 5 mile jog I will take approximately 9000 steps in total.
Where To Wear A Running Pedometer?
Since I have no pockets in my running pants, I clip my FitBit Ultra onto the waistband whilst out jogging.
If I’m walking I’m happy just to keep it in my jeans pocket. This feels much better to me as I’m always scared of the pedometer coming loose when out running.
Fortunately the FitBit also comes with a wristband which you can secure around your wrist. I tend not to use it at the minute as I wear my GPS watch and some bracelets on my other arm whilst running.
What Made Me Buy A Running Pedometer.
Whilst I use my Garmin Forerunner sports watch to map my runs, I wanted a device that would also count how far I walked each day.
I decided on the FitBit Ultra as it has an excellent battery life and works indoors and can distinguish between running and walking. The problem with the Forerunner is that once it loses it’s sateillete connection (i.e. anytime you move indoors) it can’t count how far you’ve travelled.
The FitBit measures this without a problem and even counts the number of stairs you’ve climbed.
Before I bought the pedometer I’d simply go out for a run, come back and do nothing for the rest of the day. Now I’m motivated to continue exercising through the day, by taking the stairs instead of the elevator or walking to and from the shop when my family needs something. It all adds up and I feel like I’m getting fitter every day because of it.
Can You Really Lose Weight Using A Pedometer?
Yes, but you must also monitor your food intake. Pedometers do a decent job of measuring the amount of calories you burn by walking. By taking this value into consideration you can easily forecast how much weight you’ll lose over a certain time period.
Let’s say that you are a man who requires 2,500 calories to maintain his weight. If you move enough to burn 500 calories and ingest 2,500 calories on average over a week, then you can be assured that you’ll lose close to 1lb per week.
Taking the guesswork out of diets is crucial for improving your belief in your regime.
How Many Steps Should You Make With A Pedometer Per Day?
Whilst most health bodies quote 10,000 steps as the ideal minimum amount, you should really focus on determining your own value, especially if you haven’t exercised in quite some time.
If you’ve been sedentary all your life and struggle to do 1,000 steps per day, setting yourself a daily target of 3,000 or 5,000 is a definite improvement.
Setting your goals too high is a sure fire way of demotivating yourself and falling back into your old routine.
Conclusion – The FitBit Ultra Tracker Is The Best Pedometer For Running And Walking.
I am in love with my FitBit Ultra. It has made losing weight easier as it accurately quantifies the number of calories I’ve burned today without any guess work whatsoever.
If I know how many calories I’ve burned, then I’ll know how many more I can consume without risking weight gain.
The FitBit Ultra has finally put me in control of my fitness. Before I’d just assume that I was doing enough to maintain a health weight. Now there is no more guessing.