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Fitness Trackers, Explained

Physical activity is one of the most important contributors to living a longer and healthier life. Despite that, only 50% of American adults reach their exercise goals every week. And 30% say they don’t do any physical activity at all. With so many health benefits, why is it hard to be more active? Motivation.

Fitness trackers have become a popular way for people to stay motivated and track their activity for the day. Nowadays, there are many different types of trackers with different functionality. But they all share some things in common.

Tracking your health data
Fitness trackers come in all shapes and sizes, such as phones, apps, watches and clip-ons. Some may be geared toward specific activities like running or hiking while others are all-purpose. Many trackers can track data like calories, hours slept, weight, heart rate and distance. Do some research to find the one that has the features that fit your lifestyle and health goals.

Hitting your goals
Adults should do some kind of moderate activity for at least 30 minutes per day, five days a week. By breaking down your activity levels in a visual way, fitness trackers can give you motivation and accountability that you wouldn’t get otherwise.

Depending on the device, data like heart rate and distance may be tracked automatically. Other data, like calories and weight, will probably need to be entered manually. So it’s important to get familiar with your fitness tracker and get in the habit of updating it as necessary.

Set limits
While health data can be a useful motivator, it can contribute to exercise addictions. There’s nothing wrong with adding a bit of extra activity to hit your daily goals. But setting unrealistic goals, obsessively checking your fitness tracker and working out multiple times a day may be a sign that you’re pushing yourself too hard.

Get rewarded
If you’re looking for other ways to stay motivated, be sure to sign up for the Online Health Coach. Eligible Standard and Basic Option members can complete health and wellness goals and earn money for qualified medical expenses like copays and prescription glasses. You can even connect your fitness tracker to MyBlue so it automatically tracks your progress on your Online Health Coach goals.