Thursday, February 18, 2016

Apple watch me! Watch me!

This year I got an Apple watch, and thus began the comparison against my beloved FitBitch...

I don't know anyone else with one yet, so the interaction with friends bit is unfulfilled and will have to wait. 

The cool factor for me is being able to measure my own heart rate, and see what is normal for me.  Currently my range is anywhere from 46 bpm while sleeping up to 120 bmp while running around which is pretty cool!

Similarly to the FitBitch, floors climbed seemed to not work as I would expect... which softened the blow I had initially given the Fitbit over the same matter... until I recently read that the altimeter portion is contained within the paired iPhone and not the watch.  Given how many things they had to cram into the watch I understand why it isn't in there, but it left me feeling like it was inaccurate.

The charge time on the watch is about a day and a bit, which makes it relatively ineffective for capturing sleep habits and heart rate. I've found that if I do wear it overnight, I end up charging it during an awkward time the next day and subsequently forgetting to put it back on, or not wearing it when I'm actually doing something.  Not that big of a deal unless you're getting credit for your workouts somewhere else.

I had thought that the watch was going to help eliminate lugging around as much tech during workouts, however due to the altimeter and gps functionality residing in the iPhone it actually increases the amount of gear you've got.  Of course it gives you the added functionality of heart rate monitoring, which at the moment you would have to strap on a heart rate monitor to get any other way... so it's not that bad, and at least is more comfortable than trying to keep a heartrate monitor in place.

Overall they've done a good job, but it still has a ways to go in terms of being more than a glorified heartrate monitor for me. 

Yes it brings some of the functionality of my phone conveniently out of my pocket, but I wasn't someone who was really that bothered by taking my phone out of my pocket to do things in the first place.  For me, that's like people who complain about webpages being too long... and that everything should fit on the screen. Quite frankly I'd rather scroll than have to click through 10 different pages of screen sized content if it doesn't really make any sense to split it up in the first place. Scrolling is not that difficult. Get over it.


Late last year I got a FitBit, affectionately referred to as a FitBitch by my friends...

Initially I was excited about my fitbit, because I figured it was going to change my life!

Correction: Nooooo, it will not change your life.  You still have to do that for yourself.

It does provide some valuable feedback though, and I found it makes me more aware of what I'm doing (or not doing) and how much I'm eating and snacking.  In that regard, it has improved my health/wellness to some extent.

I like the sleep tracking feature, but it falls into the category of personal interest at the moment. I haven't really figured out a way to act on the info it's providing other than to note that I should probably start going to bed earlier.

I am disappointed in the number of floors climbed, it seems to be way off pretty consistently.  I'm also disappointed in the distance reported from the sense that there's no training or calibration step.  It would be easy enough when you get your fitbitch to link it up with your phone, turn on gps, and walk a given distance and use that info to calibrate how long your normal walking strides are... this info could also be updated any time you log a walk or run by matching up the time stamps.

Community is where the fitbitch makes up for its previous pitfalls though, it wasn't until I had added my brother and his wife that I rediscovered my competitive nature and logged a ridonkulous number of steps in a single weekend.

Also battery life of the Fitbit Charge rocks, although the icon that displays after the app has synced with the device doesn't seem to have any bearing whatsoever on actual battery levels.  I do find though that since it stays charged longer, I'm more likely to be wearing it and keeping better track of things.

Although it comes and goes in waves, I think I'm more consistently logging exercise hours which ultimately is what's going to balance out my junk food intake so all in all? I love it and I can't wait to see further improvements.

Thursday, February 11, 2016

Oh California :p

As I pack for our camping trip this weekend I can't help but laugh at the  range of clothing I'm bringing... from my bathing suit through my toque and down vest... 

Surprise! Spring has sprung!!!!

At some point in the last... oooh say a day over three weeks ago, I'd posted something about it being winter... and ten seconds later spring is bursting at the seams like a small child unable to contain their enthusiasm.

I don't think I ever posted it, but I took a picture when I was living in Cupertino of *all* the trees on the block next to our office in full bloom at the same time. I had  an introspective post, along the lines of fully understanding the term "sickly sweet" on a deeper level than I had thought possible.

But I think I've topped that level, as these latest blossoms have a scent reminiscent of the ones in Cupertino... only it sticks to the back of your throat, and is one part pretty and one part pretty disgusting :p

To top it all off I'm hacking like a 70 year old smoker who started at the age of 12. 

Thanks Spring, welcome back... No we didn't have time to miss you here in California. Some things haven't even stopped blooming so we can prune them!