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How To Use Your FitBit To Train Smarter

Use your fitbit to train smarter so that you can spend more time doing the things you love.

You’ve had your Fitbit for a while. You like it, but if you had to be really honest. You’re kind of bored with it.

It logs your steps but you do nothing with that information. It doesn’t motivate you as much, other than a little nudge to move every now and again. The excitement of reaching your daily step goals has, well, kind of worn off. Really, you want to use it to its full potential.

Maybe you have newly purchased a Fitbit and you are excited about it, it’s kicking your butt into gear. But you don’t really feel like you are using it to its full potential?

Then this post is for you.

I’m going to show you ways that you can use your Fitbit to train smarter and more effectively to reach your goals so that you can spend more time doing the things you love.

So let’s get started.

Use your fitbit to train smarter

How To Use Your Fitbit To Train Smarter, So You Can Spend More Time Doing The Things You Love

1. Use Your Heart Rate Zones Properly

So that you can leave without thinking twice about your workout. Never (ever) question your workout again. Train with a purpose, okay? Good.

I’m not going to go into depth because I’ve covered it before. But there are usually two types of training I go by when it comes to cardio; HIIT and LISS.

Let’s be clear about something. Both are good for fat loss and cardiovascular benefits. 

I decide on which type of training based a number of things:

  • My mood (and no I am not going to apologise for that)
  • How stressed I am
  • Whether or not I have the mental capacity and focus for a HIIT workout
  • How much time I have
  • What I want to listen to (podcast vs. pumping music)

Now if you choose to do a LISS workout you need to:

  • Train for 30 minutes +
  • In the first heart rate zone (roughly 50% – 60% of max heart rate “MHR”)

Should you choose to do a HIIT workout, in order for a highly effectively HIIT workout , you should:

  • Switch between a peak in the top heart rate zone 85% MHR + and a low record 40% – 50% which is below an identified zone on the FitBit.
  • This usually shouldn’t go on for longer than (roughly) 20 minutes. You shouldn’t physically be able to go on if you have done it right.

Lastly, the one in the middle. Farley Training. If I have 20 – 30 minutes and no interest in HIIT for the day. I sit in the middle training zone (70% – 80% of MHR) varying the incline or speed slightly to avoid settling into a pace.

You’ll notice I have not mentioned weights training. This is not because I don’t believe in the type of training. It is because I don’t use my FitBit as a reliable HR source whilst doing a weights training session. This is because when the vessels are constricted the accuracy of the Fitbit (and any other device on the wrist) is significantly less accurate.

2. Track Your Resting Heart Rate

This is an excellent indicator of two things:

  • Improved cardiac fitness. The lower the heart rate the stronger the heart is, as it can pump more blood around the body in one pump and therefore does not need to pump as much.
  • Indicator of stress throughout the day. Many suffer from stress (including me). If you are working out in the evenings, looking at your resting HR throughout the day can be a way to help you determine what type of workout you might choose to do for that time.

3. Challenges

Seriously under-rated tool. Especially if you have had your FitBit for a while and have become a little bored with it.

I have only just started back on challenging some friends as a write this post.

If your friends are lame and don’t own a FitBit then you can opt for an “adventure”. Especially during the work week if you don’t have time for a real adventure. I particularly love the Yosemite loops and I even put some of the Yosemite courses on the treadmill and elliptical if I want to keep my eyes off the TV and tune into a podcast.

4. Weekly Goals

You can now set how many days of workouts you want to get in. It’s a great way to get you to plan out the week by helping you schedule your training, so you don’t miss a day and train in the best way possible.

Note: this is not “moving every day”, this is a set number of days for intentional exercise.

Train intentionally and with a purpose.

5. Move Everyday

Sedentary behaviour can lead to a higher risk of mortality than obesity. Obviously the combination of the two is worse. However, I recently read that for every extra hour of sitting you increase your risk by 11%. Even if you are an active person.

So, point being, never underestimate the power of just moving. Intentional exercise is great for many reasons but on your rest days you can still move and that is called active recovery.

I truly recommend that you use your Fitbit to just move every single day.

I’d love to know in the comments below, what do you use your Fitbit for the most? What do you love about it?


Train smarter so you can spend more time doing activities and adventures that you love. For services, get help even faster by emailing Kate.

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