Friday, June 05, 2015

[Review] Fitbit Charge HR

I had a lot of stuff to blog about but never did.  Procrastinating.  Today decided to blog about Fitbit Charge HR.  I don't recall as a kid that I have sleeping problem but I know for a fact that during school days, mum would come into my room and have the most high pitch voice you could imagine, telling us to wake up.  I'm experiencing childhood trauma, it's like I'm in this black hole loop.  Exaggerate!  But you get my point.  I didn't care about how many hours I would sleep in a day but I never have noon naps.  As I grew older, not sleeping becomes a habit (gamer's problem, you just can't get your hands off the keyboard or mouse), soon it became a problem.  I barely get enough sleep these days, I would blame it on age.  *chuckled.

So while I was trying to find a fix for this problem of mine, I went to see a doctor to seek medical help.  I was given sleeping pills but I stop taking em after few tries cause I didn't like how it made me feel in the mornings and just sleep whenever I could.  Brain too active maybe?  Neways, to cut story short, and Internet being your best friend, I went and research about gadgets/apps that could get me to track my sleeping patterns.  That's how I first came about Fitbit.  I know it was founded in 2007 but I wasn't sure when came to know about it.  I was sad cause Fitbit wasn't available in Malaysia then.  It was then known for tracking your steps, like a pedometer.  Correct me if I'm wrong, I'm recalling by memory, and it's somewhat vague at this moment.  Now you might think that you could just use that traditional pedometer that you hold and press as you walk.  That thing tires the thumb.  Few years later, I came to use this phone app called SleepBot.  It was good at first, but once they updated it, I got irritated with the updates and removed it.

I think Fitbit came up with the Fitbit Tracker first then other products, but I wanted the Fitbit Flex.  Couldn't get it in Malaysia and I wasn't that desperate.  Wing it on the sleeping hours.  I usually get 3-5 hours when I'm lucky or I don't get to sleep at all.  It's that horrible.  I would workout at night just to tire myself to sleep.  I'm a horrible reader, I could read and fall asleep and wake up few mintues or an hour later.  OMG why am I giving you a history of my experience with sleep tracker?  Anyways,  lets get to the current story shall we?

I was ecstatic when Fitbit announced about Charge HR last October.  It was only released this year March if I'm not mistaken.  I know for a fact am getting it if it's available in Malaysia.  Smart bands were starting to get famous but in my head, I still think Fitbit is the best choice.  I did my research.  There were other brands that were eye candy to me.  Yes, I went to all the trouble making a comparison chart of the available activity tracker around the world.  No, I'm not crazy, gosh am so geeky, I like tech stuff (purposely emphasize on like instead of love).  Surprisingly, Expansys was the only trusted site that had a pre-order for it, I mean the Charge HR.  I could ask friends overseas to purchase this for me but I rather not trouble people.  So I did, made an order with Expansys last November.  Anxiety much?  It was my first time ordering from Expansys.

Just in case you are receiving package from FedEx and wanted to self collect, this is the courier agent assigned.  Located near Cosmopoint.  Freight Mark Express at Lorong Kuala Neutron, Jalan Pintas Ujana.  If you know the shortcut going to Hospital Likas, passing DBKK Workshop.

Time goes by and Fitbit announced early the year that they selling some at a limited quantity.  Cry much?  I waited and waited till it was March, the actual release date.  The wait was horrible!  I was anxious every freaking time.  I only was receiving my order in April through Expansys's Hong Kong warehouse.  I estimated the cost and it went over budget by RM80++ due to shipment and GST.  I went through all the trouble to call the courier company to ask when they were gonna send it.  In the end, I went to the courier company to collect it personally.  Lols.

 Okay, the extra charges aren't so bad.  But if you combine total cost, it's more expensive :(


 You'll have the watch and cables and the USB

 Front and back view of the watch.  No that wasn't my current heart rate, that was the sticker hihi

The Charge HR comes in Black, Blue, Orange and Purple.  Initially I wanted the Purple but I thought why not just get black so I can match it with any dress lol.  I don't know what I was thinking.  If Fitbit ever have it in Pink or Lime Green, I'll purchase it in a heartbeat.

It's that high when you get a present. that same feeling.  Or that's just me? 

Do download the app via Google Play (android user here).  You could also go to the website to check your progress.

What you can do with this activity tracker.

Today's records.

There's also daily/weekly challenges that lets you earn badge.  Aren't we the achievement whore?  *raises hand, guilty of this act.

Can add friends for these challenges too but I only have 3 friends that owns a fitbit.  Hey! I just remembered another friend using it.  Must add!

Sleeping pattern for today.  I got a good 7 hours sleep, I just have to make myself depressed enough to shut down, less restless.  I kid I kid.

Sleeping pattern for yesterday.  This is how it looks like most of the time.  I move a lot when I sleep, I must be having some kinda nightmare.

I went and tried doing runs with it (imagine me with 1 watch, Garmin Fenix 2 on my left and Fitbit Charge HR on my right), my sleeping pattern is horrible.  You must be wondering how does this gadget records your sleep?  You just wear it on either your left or right wrist near the bone and go to sleep, it auto records, how cool is that?  I realize I sleep better when I'm tired, after a workout or going through depression.  As long as my mind shuts down, it's good.  In a way to put it.  I probably need to adjust my bed?  And uh oh! I sleep way better when it's cool, turns on aircond.

According to the instructions, it is not recommended to wear it during showers and it's advisable to clean it after a workout.  Keep it dry they say.  I'm aware that the strap will probably gives me allergy but for testing purposes, I went on wearing it when showering and working out.  It was fine for few weeks till my wrist started to itch like crazy.  Hehe.

It took me awhile to realize that applying Betadine for these kinda allergies was a bad idea.  This particular calamine lotion smells funky.  Betadine helps but makes your skin felt scaly.  Calamine lotion I think another brand is better.  I also tried aloe vera gel, but the rash came back.  My final method of treatment was apple cider vinegar.  This works wonders and my wrist looks almost back to normal.

The rash was so bad that I wrap my wrist with bandage after applying Betadine like a suicide victim.

I love this tracker so much that I didn't wanna take it off.  But I hate the fact that I'm allergic to it.  Sobs.

 Almost back to normal.  Initially it was red.  It's like an allergic reaction to silver. 

Another problem I faced is not being able to upload it via Bluetooth cause it tends to clash with garmin connect.  What you can do, if this happens is to uninstall and reinstall the app (I didn't do this) or connect your Charge HR to the power cable, press the button for 10-12 seconds and you are good to go.  It uploads faster somehow after that.

So, if you're looking for it, Superbuy also sells it for RM599.  Get it overseas if you could, way cheaper, within RM500 range.

If you wanna read more about Fitbit Charge HR, check out DC Rainmaker or go to Fitbit website for the product lines.  I actually went through some activity trackers comparison from Fitbit, Jawbone, Withings, TomToms, Garmin, Misfit, Nike, Polar and many more.  But it all boils down to which fits you the most and what you want it to do.  In my case, I wanted to track my heart rate and sleeping hours and that's about it.  Chest straps is way too troublesome especially wearing it under the sports bra.

So yeah, that's about it.  Still happy that I got it.  If anyone got any question, feel free to comment.  I hope I covered enough of it.  Till next post :)

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