A Month on the Wrist: Runtastic Orbit Fitness Band from a New Fitness Enthusiast

I used to be a couch potato — devouring plates and plates of food, living a sedentary lifestyle, and then devouring plates and plates of food.

Something hit me.

If I continued this way, I might just have a couple of years down the road.

I don’t want that. I’m still seeking for that one great love and just a couple of years won’t be enough.

I had to change something.

I began cutting my food intake. Subconsciously, due to some sort of depression. I lost a few kilos.

Then, a friend told me about running. How it gives her peace of mind. I didn’t believe at first. I was iffy. I believed it’s too much work. I didn’t want to do it.

At first.

Then, I started. Slow walks. Brisk walks. Jogging. Running.

Move on (3)

I fell in love with the UP Academic Oval.

Then, I thought I needed a buddy. Something that would help me track my progress. That’s when I got hold of the Runtastic Orbit.

Runtastic Orbit

The Runtastic Orbit is a 24/7 friend for me, a fitness wearable that tracks my activities, fitness, and sleep round-the-clock. It does not rest just to keep me informed of my progress (or decline, during holiday breaks).

Runtastic Orbit (1)

The Runtastic Me app, which works best with the Runtastic Orbit, has been around for quite some time now. Actually, a lot of fitness buffs have been using it long before the Orbit has arrived. Now, they are a pair that complement each other well.

Inside the Orbit’s box, you get the wearable, two wristbands (one black, one color), a belt clip, a USB charging cable, and products instructions and information. The device works best paired with a smartphone, which isn’t included in the box, that has the Runtastic App.

Runtastic Orbit (2) Runtastic Orbit (3) Runtastic Orbit (4) Runtastic Orbit (5)

The Orbit device is a long plastic wedge approximately 2 inches in length that comes with an accelerometer, vibration motor, and a unique ambient light sensor. It has a single button that is easily accessible whether you use the wristband or clip. When you press the button, it rotates various information including the time, number of steps, calories burned, and active minutes. A long press on this button will switch it from being on Awake Mode to Sleep Mode, which then tracks your sleep length and quality.

I haven’t tried the Runtastic Me app before but even on first try, it was intuitive. It is best used with the Runtastic Orbit as it instantaneously sends information to the smartphone via Bluetooth. The Runtastic Me app is available on Android and iOS. It is compatible with Android 4.3 or better and with the iPhone 4S or newer.

Runtastic Me App (3) Runtastic Me App (1) Runtastic Me App (2)

I found the Runtastic Orbit to be an almost accurate step tracker. It appears that they’ve gone above and beyond to ensure its accuracy as a pedometer. However, there is a bit of a blip since it seems to be recording the motion of my arms, even if I’m not really walking but my arm is moving, it would be recording it as steps.

A notable feature of the Runtastic Orbit is that it is waterproof. I have tested it many times, using it while taking a bath or taking a quick dip in the pool or beach, and it’s still working fine so far.

Another strength of the Orbit is how it works well in the Runtastic ecosystem. With the Runtastic Me app on the phone, it is a easy way to track activities, fitness, and sleep.

Battery life is pretty good for a user like me. On observation, it lasted around 3 to 5 days on a single full charge. Charging it usually just takes a couple of hours.

A shortcoming though of the Runtastic Orbit is its capability to track sleep accurately. As I’ve mentioned before, it only starts tracking sleep once you long pressed the single button on the device. Even if you know that you haven’t instantly fell asleep, it will record it as you sleeping. Then, when you wake in the morning, you need to long press it again for it to switch back to Awake Mode. Otherwise, even if you are already awake, it will continue tracking it as sleep. It would have been better if it also tracked other information such heart rate to determine whether you are sleeping or not.

Overall, the Runtastic Orbit is a fitness wearable I’d recommend for fitness enthusiasts who want to see a quantitative proof of their progress. Even newbies like me find it easy to use… and cool to wear.

How about you, what’s your fitness buddy?






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