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Old 05-29-15, 12:37 PM  
Daphne M
 
Join Date: Oct 2001
Location: Northern Virginia
My daughter (18 yo) and I got fitness trackers at the same time. She got a FitBit Flex and I got a Garmin VivoSmart, which is comparable to the FitBit Charge.

I love my VivoSmart and she wishes she'd gotten the VivoSmart because she likes that the data is more accessible and detailed than on her FitBit. I don't have to look at the data on my phone, it's all on the wristband when I tap it: # of steps, #of calories, the time, etc. The VivoSmart syncs easily with both iPhones and Androids and links up to the whole Garmin Connect site so that you can track progress daily, weekly, monthly, etc.

Random notes:
  • My VivoSmart displays my text messages and emails, which comes in handy when I'm in a meeting at work -- it allows me to unobtrusively check to see if a text needs my response. (In other words, is it one of my teenagers about to do something stupid.)
  • Like you, I do indoor cycling. I found out that I have to thread the VivoSmart through my shoelaces to get credit for that. I'm not sure how the FitBit works for that.
  • The FitBit is better for tracking sleep quality. The Garmin shows how much you tossed and turned but doesn't put a value on it to make it easy to compare from night to night.
  • The VivoSmart vibrates if you haven't been active in one hour and flashes "MOVE" at me. I mostly like this but sometimes feel like I'm being nagged.
  • I found the calorie count to be eye-opening. Turns out that I burn a lot fewer calories than I realized. This realization kept me on track when I was working on losing weight and really helped me fine-tune my nutrition.
Have fun choosing!
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Old 05-29-15, 01:21 PM  
Marie1120
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Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: SE Wisconsin
Quote:
Originally Posted by Daphne M View Post
My daughter (18 yo) and I got fitness trackers at the same time. She got a FitBit Flex and I got a Garmin VivoSmart, which is comparable to the FitBit Charge.

I love my VivoSmart and she wishes she'd gotten the VivoSmart because she likes that the data is more accessible and detailed than on her FitBit. I don't have to look at the data on my phone, it's all on the wristband when I tap it: # of steps, #of calories, the time, etc. The VivoSmart syncs easily with both iPhones and Androids and links up to the whole Garmin Connect site so that you can track progress daily, weekly, monthly, etc.

Random notes:
  • My VivoSmart displays my text messages and emails, which comes in handy when I'm in a meeting at work -- it allows me to unobtrusively check to see if a text needs my response. (In other words, is it one of my teenagers about to do something stupid.)
  • Like you, I do indoor cycling. I found out that I have to thread the VivoSmart through my shoelaces to get credit for that. I'm not sure how the FitBit works for that.
  • The FitBit is better for tracking sleep quality. The Garmin shows how much you tossed and turned but doesn't put a value on it to make it easy to compare from night to night.
  • The VivoSmart vibrates if you haven't been active in one hour and flashes "MOVE" at me. I mostly like this but sometimes feel like I'm being nagged.
  • I found the calorie count to be eye-opening. Turns out that I burn a lot fewer calories than I realized. This realization kept me on track when I was working on losing weight and really helped me fine-tune my nutrition.
Have fun choosing!
Thank you. I will check this one out too. I like the flashing "MOVE".
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"Those who remove mountains begin by carrying away small stones."
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Old 06-02-15, 06:42 AM  
Marie1120
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Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: SE Wisconsin
Another question prompted by the thread on the wrist "burns" with the Fitbit.

I am allergic to Nickel - not highly allergic but something to keep in mind. Has anyone with a Garmin (VivoFit or VivoSmart) had a reaction?

Or for anyone that had reactions from other Fitbit and now using the Charge HR (or Charge) and not having an issue?

Thanks.
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Marie
2010 goal - 300 workout sessions
304/300
2009 - 312/300

"Those who remove mountains begin by carrying away small stones."
- Chinese Proverb

"Getting up in the morning is a case of mind over mattress." Ziggy
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Old 06-02-15, 08:08 AM  
raeven
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
As somebody that is currently having reactions to the charge hr, I'd steer away from it if you are already prone to having Nickel reactions. I'm not allergic to anything (besides seasonal allergies) and I'm getting burn marks from it if I don't cover the charging port with tape. So far that's my only place I react to it. I do have other fitbits I can change too like the flex and the one if I ultimately don't feel like dealing with the charge hr anymore.

I did have the first vivofit when it first came out. I rather liked it because the display is always on and displays where you leave it at...like if you want steps to show all the time, or the clock, or whatever. You don't have to push a button to cycle through everything every time, a pet peeve of mine with other trackers. I loved never having to charge it. I loved that I could swim and shower with it. I did not like that I couldn't read it in the dark. Also, at the time, and I still see the same complaints from some people...that syncing it would be very hit or miss and very annoying. I'm not sure how much better that is now, but it was a huge reason I returned it. That and I wasn't impressed with the software much. I ultimately returned to fitbit because their software is great imo. The vivofit 2 has me very interested since they added a backlight to it, and added and audible alert to the non-movement function. Really wish fitbit would add this ability! From what I've seen, I don't believe the vivofit 2 ever needs charging either. Overall I found the vivofit to be a very nice device, and seems to have been made even better in version 2. I found it to be pretty accurate and I never had a reaction to it, or anything else for that matter.

Personally, I enjoy checking out the various trackers. So far, I've always returned to a fitbit and I have used one for a few years now, and have several versions of them. My hubby even just got me the fitbit aria scale of mothers day! If you want a fitbit but are just concerned about the reactions, then you could still always go for the flex, or the one, or even the zip. If you want it all on your wrist to see the stats there, I'd be very wary of the charge and would steer you elsewhere. I love my charge besides what it does to me..so it's still in a "we will see" state for me.
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Old 06-02-15, 08:19 AM  
raeven
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Quote:
Originally Posted by Marie1120 View Post
I want a wrist fitness tracker and looking for opinions. I think Fitbit and Garmin seem to have the best options but open to other recs.

Are you happy with your choice? Do you only go by steps or do you use other stats it gives you?

Requirements:
Easy to use
Interfaces with iPhone
As accurate as possible with activities I do - spin, strength training, treadmill, elliptical, and fitness DVDs (usually walking type cardio or weights)
I don't want to wear a heart rate chest strap

Thanks.
Just re-read the original post again. None of these trackers will accurately track all of these activities. You could enter the workout manually into the app, like time spent and it will give you are general calorie output. The only way to most accurately track those types of activities however is with a chest strap. The charge HR is great at recording your resting hr, and while just sitting around. But during actual workouts, it gets all wonky with anything besides walking. I use a polar h7 strap and use either the polar beat app, or lately the digifit app for my actual workouts besides walks outside. You may want to consider something like the Polar a300 watch. It's a bit bulky, but it tracks steps and gives you activity goals each day. It also has an audible beep and vibrates when you've been sitting too long. It does everything you want, but will give you more accurate calorie burn if you also use the hr strap with it. Just something to think about! Samething goes for the garmin trackers if used with the HR strap.
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Old 06-02-15, 09:10 AM  
ealakey
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
My experience with the Fitbit Charge HR, it's inaccurate tracking workouts that get your heart rate into the fat burning zone. It stopped syncing my activities a few weeks after I bought it, even after a forced restart and following the suggestions in the community forum. I'm now manually logging activities from a Wahoo Tickr chest strap HRM, which is very accurate, easy to use and much cheaper. I enjoy the Fitbit friend challenges, steps and checking sleep patterns, but I could have gotten those options with the Charge.

Good luck with your decision,
~Beth
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Old 06-02-15, 09:37 AM  
margaux
 
Join Date: Dec 2001
Location: Ohio
I have had the vivofit (original) since January of this year. I am allergic to nickel but have had no problems with vivofit. I wear it 24/7, except for showering.
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Old 06-02-15, 10:16 AM  
Kathy G
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Join Date: Nov 2001
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I am also very allergic to any kind of "base" metal and nickel. I can only wear sterling silver or gold jewelry. I haven't had any reaction with the original Garmin Vivofit (but it doesn't have any metal on the device or the band).
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Old 06-02-15, 01:53 PM  
Marie1120
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Quote:
Originally Posted by raeven View Post
Just re-read the original post again. None of these trackers will accurately track all of these activities. You could enter the workout manually into the app, like time spent and it will give you are general calorie output. The only way to most accurately track those types of activities however is with a chest strap. The charge HR is great at recording your resting hr, and while just sitting around. But during actual workouts, it gets all wonky with anything besides walking. I use a polar h7 strap and use either the polar beat app, or lately the digifit app for my actual workouts besides walks outside. You may want to consider something like the Polar a300 watch. It's a bit bulky, but it tracks steps and gives you activity goals each day. It also has an audible beep and vibrates when you've been sitting too long. It does everything you want, but will give you more accurate calorie burn if you also use the hr strap with it. Just something to think about! Samething goes for the garmin trackers if used with the HR strap.
That was wishful thinking especially if I want to keep it quick and easy. I might need to settle for tracking steps to at least have one trackable goal and the reminder on my wrist. The Vivosmart has an option for a HR monitor so that might be the best choice for daily ease but the option for more. Maybe Garmin has a consultant. I can't tell if the Vivosmart has any metal on the back. I am usually OK with stainless steel but I did break out from the Body Bugg after a while and I think that was stainless steel. There was a medication available that was found to treat nickel allergies. I took that for some time and it helped. It wasn't covered by insurance. I'm not sure if that would have any long term impact.
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Marie
2010 goal - 300 workout sessions
304/300
2009 - 312/300

"Those who remove mountains begin by carrying away small stones."
- Chinese Proverb

"Getting up in the morning is a case of mind over mattress." Ziggy
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Old 06-02-15, 01:54 PM  
Marie1120
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Join Date: Mar 2004
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bethlakey View Post
My experience with the Fitbit Charge HR, it's inaccurate tracking workouts that get your heart rate into the fat burning zone. It stopped syncing my activities a few weeks after I bought it, even after a forced restart and following the suggestions in the community forum. I'm now manually logging activities from a Wahoo Tickr chest strap HRM, which is very accurate, easy to use and much cheaper. I enjoy the Fitbit friend challenges, steps and checking sleep patterns, but I could have gotten those options with the Charge.

Good luck with your decision,
~Beth
Thank you for this info.
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Marie
2010 goal - 300 workout sessions
304/300
2009 - 312/300

"Those who remove mountains begin by carrying away small stones."
- Chinese Proverb

"Getting up in the morning is a case of mind over mattress." Ziggy
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