Fitbit: Making Every Step Count


TechTalk sizedWhen my son Eric bought me a Fitbit Flex for Christmas, I don’t think he could have anticipated the monster he was unleashing in his mom. I think he just recognized the geek in me and figured that I’d love trying out this cool gadget.

In reality, my Fitbit Flex is sort of revolutionizing my physical life.

What makes this different than the simple step-counting pedometers we’ve all worn in the past? For me, it’s the phone’s connection to my smartphone, a Galaxy Note 3, that makes the difference.

Daily steps taken with Fitbit, displayed on the Android App

Daily steps taken with Fitbit, displayed on the Android App

First, let’s look at the Fitbit as it comes out of the box. The recipe is very simple: two different sized wrist bands (one small and one large), rubber and flexible with a snapping closure. Into the proper sized band, you place a small, rechargeable flex tracker that counts your motion. If you’re a fashion person, you can actually buy a variety of wrist bands and swap out the colors. So far, I’ve stuck with basic black, and while it took me a while to get used to wearing the band, I now feel sort of naked without it.

Sleep tracking graph on Fitbit Android AppI’m currently only scratching the surface of Fitbit’s potential by using it solely to track my steps and my sleep patterns. While I’ve configured the Fitbit app to work with the My Fitness Pal app to track my caloric intake, I haven’t really been using it to track calories consistently. Were I doing so, Fitbit would calculate my calories taken in and expended and would give me a relatively detailed look at how I can effectively meet my weight loss goals.

But as I said, I’m taking baby steps here. My primary goals for the month of January have been to track my sleep patterns (Fitbit tells me my times “awake” and “restless” per night) and to make sure that I’m taking at least 10,000 steps per day. For me, working in a sedentary job, this is a challenge. And unlike less accurate pedometers I’ve worn in the past, Fitbit seems to be pretty darn accurate when it comes to counting steps. I did notice on recent bike rides that it inaccurately counted some steps, but when it comes to walking either on the street or on a treadmill, the tracker seems quite accurate. Another major plus for the product is its excellent battery life.

Perhaps for me, a busy 50-year-old wife and mom, the best thing about wearing my Fitbit is the visual reminder it gives me each day to better care for the gift of my physical body. Young moms who are chasing kiddos all day may be surprised to see the number of steps you take! But for us “desk jockeys”, glancing down and seeing that it’s noon and you’ve only taken 2,500 steps can be the kick in the pants you need to get you out the door for a walk.

I hope to be back next month with an update on the calorie tracking features of Fitbit. In the mean time, if you’ve this or another device I’d love to hear what you think!

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Copyright 2014 Lisa M. Hendey


About Author

Lisa M. Hendey is the founder and editor of and the bestselling author of the Chime Travelers children's fiction series, The Grace of Yes, The Handbook for Catholic Moms and A Book of Saints for Catholic Moms. As a board member and frequent host on KNXT Catholic Television, Lisa has produced and hosted multiple programs and has appeared on EWTN and CatholicTV. Hendey hosted “Catholic Moments” on Radio Maria and is the technology contributor for EWTN’s SonRise Morning Show. Lisa's articles have appeared in Catholic Digest, National Catholic Register, and Our Sunday Visitor. Hendey travels internationally giving workshops on faith, family, and Catholic technology and communications topics. She was selected as an Elizabeth Egan Journalism Fellow, attended the Vatican Bloggers Meeting, the “Bishops and Bloggers” meeting and has written internationally on the work of Catholic Relief Services and Unbound. Hendey lives with her family in the Archdiocese of Los Angeles. Visit Lisa at for information on her speaking schedule or to invite her to visit your group, parish or organization.


  1. Sounds like a wonderful tool!! Too bad there’s not $100 in our budget for one….. Thanks for sharing this type of information, though!

  2. Way to go on the steps, Lisa! That is awesome!! I treated myself to a Fitbit One after I ran my first 5K last summer. I really like it! I was amazed at how few steps I take as a SAHM; I really have to put forth an effort, as it doesn’t happen naturally. But I climb A LOT of stairs each day, which is cool, well past the “goal.” Now that I have a smartphone, I will have to look into the app, too! Fitbit is a great tool for sure!

  3. Sounds pretty cool! I do weight watchers usually every January until spring break and it is great with tracking the amount of food you eat and whether it’s healthy or not. I do it all on my phone. How does the Fit Band know about your sleeping and if you’re restless? That would be interesting. Thanks for your review!

    • It senses motion, so while you could be laying very still and still be awake, it’s not 100% accurate, but very close. I am playing with watching how my pre-bedtime habits like eating, drinking and exercise impact upon my sleep. It’s interesting.

  4. I was given the FitBit (not the wristband) for Christmas. I sit at a computer for most of the day, seeing how few steps I take has made me get up to deliver the message in person to the office across the hall instead of emailing. I will have to try the sleep function next. Thanks for sharing, I feel as if I have found a true sister in Christ!

      • Did the CM fitbit group ever happen?? I just got one recently – I’m in a local group but would love to connect with our CM buds! p.s. it has not revolutionized my steps – I’ve decided I’m not easily motivated to exercise.

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