If you’re looking for motivation to get up off the couch, step away from your desk or start a new exercise program, you may want a source of encouragement. Yes, you could hire a fitness coach to get you going, but who wants to pay a lot of money for all that nagging?
Instead you could save your precious funds and use wearable tech to help you set fitness goals and stick to them. The Jawbone UP is a fitness band to help you keep track of your movement as well as your sleep. By wearing UP you can monitor how much exercise you get during the day and how restful your sleep is at night.
What is UP?
UP is a flexible fitness band you wear on your wrist that syncs with an app on your iPhone/iPad/iPod Touch or Android device to track your activity and your sleep. Wear the UP 24/7 to monitor your movement and see your results on the app for your phone. The app suggests goals for you and lets you set your own goals for fitness and sleep. You can see how your actual activity matches both your goals and UP’s recommended 10,000 steps a day and 7-9 hours of sleep.
This video shows you how UP works:
The UP band plugs into the headphone jack of your phone to sync with the app. Syncing takes just a few seconds, even if you haven’t plugged the band in for a few days.
After your UP is synced, the app will show you graphs and give you loads of information so you can see how you’re doing. The UP doesn’t have a screen so you may find yourself plugging the band into your phone repeatedly throughout the day to monitor your activity level.
One downside of syncing is that you have to remove a cap to reveal the plug. Be sure not to misplace the cap or your plug will be permanently exposed.
Because UP physically connects to your phone (instead of using Bluetooth) and doesn’t have a screen to power, its battery life is extraordinarily long: 10 days. In my tests the 10 day life span of the battery turned out to be very accurate.
One very helpful feature is that when you sync the UP the app tells you how much battery life is left, both in percentage and in days/hours.
If you’re a fan of data you’ll be impressed with all of the charts and information that the UP app provides. View your active time, calories burned, distance walked and number of steps.
You can see:
- Active time
- Longest active time
- Longest idle time
- Total burn
- Active burn
- Resting burn
You can view your information over days, weeks and months as well as identify trends over time. You can adjust the information shown in the graphs if there is a particular aspect of your fitness and/or sleep you want to track.
A fascinating feature of the UP is the analysis it provides of your sleep. This feature is optional and must be initiated and ended manually. You can set sleep goals, similar to your fitness goals, to see if you’re achieving the optimal amount of rest.
To track your sleep, press the end of the band until you feel a click and the indicator light turns blue. Then doze off. When you wake in the morning, press the end of the band again and look for the green indicator light.
The next time you sync your band with your phone, the app will show you information about your sleep. You can find out:
- How long it took you to fall asleep
- How long you slept
- How many times you work during the night
- How many hours of sound vs. light sleep you had
If you want to join others in achieving fitness goals, you can connect with them using the UP app. You can have the app search Twitter, Facebook and your contacts to see if any of your buddies are also using the UP app. Use joint goals and competitions to give you incentives to move.
You can also share your activity with others using the UP app if you connect your social media accounts.
You can monitor your calorie consumption using the UP app. Enter what you eat, by looking up food in the app’s database or by scanning bar codes. You can also sync the app to the My Fitness Pal app.
➩ See, My Fitness Pal Review
You can link your UP account to other apps beyond My Fitness Pal, including RunKeeper and IFTTT, to take your fitness to the next level.
You can also use the UP Coffee app to log your caffeine intake and see its impact on your sleep.
To give you added motivation, the app shows you cards with boosts such as fitness tips, added tracking information and inspirational ideas. You can save your favorites to refer back to them later.
The app also celebrates important milestones, such as you achieving your goals, reaching your millionth step and consistently getting enough sleep. You can also set an idle alarm so the band will vibrate if you’re resting for too long.
You can record your moods to see whether they may be affected by the factors UP tracks: movement and sleep. Getting exercise and sleep may do wonders for your mood.
The UP is available in seven colors and three sizes, currently on sale at Amazon for $99.55, marked down from $129.99, and from local Verizon stores.
You can download the free app for:
The app is available in many languages, including: English, Spanish, French, Dutch, German, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Portuguese (Brazilian), Russian, Simplified Chinese, and Traditional Chinese.
Note that you do have to have either an iPhone/iPad/iPod Touch or Android device to use the UP fitness band.
If you’re looking for a way to get incentive to exercise and monitor your fitness and/or sleep, check out the UP. Those who enjoy reviewing data will get plenty with the UP app and perhaps get insights into their moods.
Have you been looking for a fitness tracker to help you get motivated to move? Do you like the idea of monitoring your activity with an app? Would you use the UP to monitor your sleep cycles? Let us know your thoughts in the Comments section below!