Those of you who have followed my blog for a while are well aware that I suffer from insomnia. Probably from squeezing so much awesome into all this plus sized cuteness, right? In fact, I’m so awesome that I have to resort to prescription drugs to catch my z’s – but that’s another habit I hope to kick in 2013. I think it’s reasonable to expect that once I start consistently shaking my moneymaker I’ll be a lot more tired at night…don’t you?
I’m using one of the coolest tools around to help me hit my 2013 goal of making exercise a consistent habit: the Fitbit Ultra tracker. If you’re not up to speed with this little badass bit of technological goodness, click here to read about my first experience with it. One of the features of the Fitbit Ultra activity tracker is that it monitors your sleep. I kid you not.
The technological geniuses over at Fitbit have several activity tracking devices to choose from. Some offer more features than others, some are at a lower price point than others. I have the Fitbit Ultra, which I recently purchased, but don’t see on their website, so I’ll have to ask them about that. Stay tuned!! I encourage you to check out their website for complete info on all the devices they have to offer.
The sleep tracking feature has been really interesting for me to play with – and I would imagine it could be very enlightening to some folks who might unknowingly suffer from sleep apnea and have no idea. It tracks how many times the user wakes up during the night. I average around 11 times. I have no idea if that’s normal, especially since I take medication to help me sleep, but I plan on sharing that information with my doctor the next time I see him just to make sure.
Likewise, I can imagine that the sleep tracking feature could be very enlightening for anyone who sleep walks and has no idea. Like Hot Mess Hubby. Seriously…he thought he was stumbling into the bathroom one night and peed on a ficus in our bedroom instead. Try explaining that to the carpet cleaning guy.
To track my sleep, I just slip the Fitbit Ultra into a little slot on the wrist band that came with it. (Normally during the day I keep Fitbit clipped to my bra.) When I lurch out of bed the next morning, I log in to my Fitbit online account and enter the time I went to bed and the time I got out of bed. Simple. Here’s what Fitbit had to say about last night’s sleep:
As you can see, it took me an hour and 11 minutes to fall asleep. This is actually pretty accurate. I was reading in bed last night. Fitbit sensed that I was flipping pages on my Kindle (or petting Caesar the crabby tabby when he head-butts said Kindle). Once I fell asleep, I awoke 8 times.
I don’t track my sleep every night. Why? I’m not sure why I should. I guess I don’t understand the benefits of daily sleep tracking. Maybe I’ll throw that in the email I send them about the Ultra. I do find it useful, though, and I’ll definitely publish follow-up posts if I hear back from Fitbit – and when I discuss the 11 average wake-ups with my doctor.
Fitbit provides this answer on their website to the question “Why should I track my sleep?”
“Fitbit’s sleep tracking is based on research conducted by sleep labs. Following body movement during sleep provides a measurement of the quality of rest. Tossing and turning in one’s sleep, which can be detected by Fitbit Trackers, is indicative of restlessness.”
As I motor through 2013 on my way to a healthier, more active lifestyle I hope to ween myself off all sleep medications…and maybe I can put a dent in those wake-ups – although, according to Fitbit, I’m a fairly efficient sleeper. Obviously, they’re not taking 130 pound half-wit dogs into account.
See, Dyson doesn’t like to be reminded that there are other dogs in the world. I left the tv on in the living room and got the bejesus scared out of me when he started barking like there was a serial killer on the front porch. Maybe Fitbit can come up with a dog collar that wirelessly connects to my Ultra tracker and shouts “No!” if I’m sleeping peacefully and he opens his doggy yap.
Hey, I can dream.
Have you been motivated to grab a Fitbit tracker because of this blog? I’d love to hear what you have to say about your own experience. Share your experience here!