Until recently, I’d never worn a fitness tracker. The most I had done was consult my iPhone 6’s built-in Health app from time to time to check on steps and distance I’ve walked. I tend to walk a ton every day, and I aim for 10,000 to 12,000 steps–but I’ve survived this long without a tracker because I know, at least in my home city of Toronto, what that distance is, and understand how far, and for how long, I have to walk to achieve roughly that number of steps.
Having said that, I kind of envied my mom, who has worn a fitness tracker since they came out, and who is always checking on her sleep patterns, calories burned, and more. Same with many of my friends–I was curious, I admit, to know what it would be like to have one. So I was pretty excited when Timex sent me the IronMan Move x 20 activity band to try out.
First impressions when I opened the box: Sleek! Its black face and hot-pink band look great. (It comes in plain black, too, and a variety of other colours.) The characters are easy to read–bright green on a black background. Like other fitness bands that don’t include GPS, it has many features: You can set your daily goal and it will vibrate to alert you when you’ve achieved it. And, of course, it’ll monitor your sleep patterns, count calories burned, distance walked or run, and steps taken. This Timex will store data for up to 30 days, too. And, it’s splash proof.
But where this one differs from most others (my mom’s brand included) is that it also gives me alerts (via a vibration) whenever I get a text or phonecall on my smartphone–and it runs text across its face to say who the call is from. If it’s a text, it also shows the first bunch of words. I LOVE THIS FEATURE. The reason is that, when I’m out cycling on my road bike, I don’t like to stop unless I have to use the bathroom or grab a snack. I keep my smartphone tucked into my cycling top’s back pocket, and feel it vibrate when I receive a text or phone call. Sometimes I manage to ignore it until my next break, but too often I feel compelled to check my phone right away–which means I have to unclip from my pedals, pull over to the side of the road, fish around in my back pocket for my phone, and put in my passcode to check it. (I rarely do this while still riding my bike; it feels unsafe. And there’s probably a law against it!!) Now, with this Timex IronMan Move x 20, I need only glance at my wrist to see if the call or text is urgent–no need to stop unnecessarily. Gotta keep moving!
Bonus: It’s super easy to set up; I downloaded the Timex Move x 20 app onto my iPhone, synced it, and I was off to the races–not literally, but as I get my steps in, this activity band may just motivate me to race against myself, on a daily basis.