One of the hardest aspects of reaching fitness goals is holding oneself accountable. While getting healthier and losing weight are normally primary goals of fitness, it is often that the person engaging in this challenge is the only one interested in this result.
Without motivation — be if from others or ourselves — it can be easy to push aside goals.
Fitness tracking applications help users create healthy habits. Fifty percent of people starting an exercise program will drop out within the first 6 months, unless they have something motivating them, according to research.
Using technology to help create and keep fitness habits has become invaluable to its users. Here’s how:
Fitness Tracker Health Benefits
By helping users focus on creating a more positive fitness routine, fitness trackers have beneficially impacted several areas of health. Benefits of tracking technology include:
Trackers Help Users Lose Weight
Fitness trackers help users lose weight, plain and simple. One of the main reasons individuals invest in fitness trackers is to lose excess pounds, and most fitness apps and trackers were created specifically to motivate people to move.
Some trackers come with sensors that can monitor distance, steps, time active, and calories burned, allowing the user to regulate their food intake accordingly.
They Improve Heart Function
Along with helping users lose weight, fitness apps may help improve overall heart function and share valuable data with your physician. Utilizing a heart rate monitoring sensor, a tracker is able to collect data over a time period, detecting abnormal heart issues like sleep apnea and atrial de-fibrillation.
They Improve Sleeping Habits
Fitness trackers help analyze the quality sleep a user gets. Since the measure of quality quality sleep is often a measure of health, getting the proper amount is vital. Individuals with sleep deprivation face a host of physical and psychological issues like overeating, a bad immune response, or mood swings.
Fitness trackers like FitBit and Apple Watch track sleep time and quality of sleep, and they can help identify any problems associated with a night of rest — or a lack thereof.
Healthcare professionals are also reporting positive outcomes from using fitness trackers and applications. This technology can help both the professional as well as the patient manage and prevent specific conditions.
“On average it takes more than 2 months (or 66 days) for a new habit or routine to become automatic.”
How Fitness Apps Help Create Routines
Studies have shown that routines are valuable. Having a consistent routine helps reduce stress levels, improve mental health, improve sleep, and generate an overall better sense of well-being for a person. Fitness trackers help users build a habit or start a routine by:
Offering Friendly Competition
Fitness trackers provide a strong sense of healthy competition within the user as well as on a social level. Integrated technology allows users to connect through social media platforms with other motivated users.
This type of technology allows users to connect to their friends or co-workers to share their goals and progress. Getting healthy is easier to work towards when you are surrounded by individuals who have similar goals.
Fitness tracking technology can help boost a user’s motivation, keeping users engaged and devoted to their fitness goals and overall health. Fitness trackers allow a routine workout to feel more like a competitive game rather than a chore. Data is stored and tracked over time to show progress in endurance and health over time.
Fitness trackers provide accountability for their users with personalized reminders designed to help keep fitness goals in the forefront of their minds.
It’s hard to brush off when you are constantly reminded of its importance. By changing the pattern of thought with fitness trackers, a routine or habit is more likely to become ingrained in your mind.
Fitness Trackers Are Habit Forming
For years it was thought that it only took 21 days to make a routine or habit stick, but researchers at the University College London have debunked this.
Their study examined 96 individuals and their habits over a 12-week period. Each person in the study was asked to choose a new habit to integrate into their life for 12 weeks and report each day whether they completed the habit and if they felt the behavior was automatic.
Some of their habits were simple goals, like: “Drink eight glasses of water today. ” Others were more difficult like: “Run 30 minutes before dinner.” At the end of the 12 weeks, researchers looked at the data to determine how long it took each person to feel if the behavior had become automatic.
The study found that on average it took more than 2 months (or 66 days) for a new habit or routine to become automatic.
While fitness trackers serve a primary purpose to help users reach their fitness goals, they have a valuable place in creating habitual actions. Whether it takes you 21 days or 12 weeks, a fitness tracker is invaluable tool to have when it comes to habit forming and cultivating routines.