HRM or Fitbit???

I tried looking up the difference between them but I'm not finding them. What's the difference? Is there a preference? I've been told both are good for calorie counter....and I know how they count calories....but what's the difference? Do they work for a JM workout? Do they count those calories burned? Or just from walking/running/steps etc?


  • TeenTwinkleToes
    TeenTwinkleToes Posts: 119 Member
    Hmm am I posted in the wrong area?
  • FruityLoops
    FruityLoops Posts: 138 Member
    I'm interested to know also :-) Possibly better under the fitness and exercise board, not sure.
  • NavyMommy
    NavyMommy Posts: 102 Member
    A HRM is something you would wear only during a workout. I have a Polar FT4 that I love. It tells me how many calories I burn when working out by monitoring my heart rate, and being able to see my heart rate on my watch gives me a kick in the pants if I'm not working hard enough!!

    A FitBit is more of a pedometer. It measures your steps and by extrapolation your daily activity. You wear that 24/7 and it will give you an estimate of calories burned.

    Personally, in addition to my HRM I have a BodyMedia Fit Link that I wear on my arm 24/7. It's similar to a FitBit in that it gives you feedback on your calories burned all day, but it's work against the skin and measures things like skin temperature and perspiration (along with other things, I don't remember them all). I love mine! IIRC when I was comparing the BodyMedia and FitBit the BodyMedia was only a little more expensive, and once your free trial is up (I got 6 months) you have to pay $6.95 a month for the website.
  • MegWilbe
    MegWilbe Posts: 56 Member
    I would say if its one or the other get the HRM first then you can back it up with a Fitbit later
  • I love my fitbit. I find I move more on the days I use it. It seems a lot more accurate than just a pedometer and it also keeps track of how many flights of stairs you walk.
  • If your primary goal is to track calorie expenditure you may be happier with the fitbit.

    If your primary goal is improve your fitness level I would go with the HRM. The hrm will also report pretty accurate calorie burns for your workouts, it is not accurate or practical for everyday activities (cleaning, walking around the house ...)
  • denise032
    denise032 Posts: 108 Member
    I use a Polar FT4 for all my workouts (cardio, circuit training, JM videos). Works great, I highly recommend it.
  • cwolfman13
    cwolfman13 Posts: 41,876 Member
    Depends on your goals....a FitBit is basically a fancy pedometer that will track your calories throughout the day. A HRM is used during cardio exercise to set HR zone goals for that particular workout to avoid over/under training based on the workout goal for that also spits out a calorie burn but that's pretty much secondary to me and I don't pay much attention to it anymore. A HRM will only give you an accurate burn when you are doing some sort of aerobic will not be accurate to wear it around all day like a FitBit.
  • MaryinBflo
    MaryinBflo Posts: 437 Member
    I use both but I used a HRM for years before getting a fitbit and cant workout without one! the HRM tells you your HR (obviously) where the fitbit just calculates how many calories you are buring. the fitbit will calcualate pretty accuratelty ( I have tested it agains my HRM) for cardio exercises but not for weight lifting workouts. The fit bit is easier to wear too you barely know it's there so if you don't like the chest strap of a HRM it's a good choice.

    It's really personally preference. I like both tools but if I had nothing and had to pick just one I'd go with the fitbit first.
  • ChristyRunStarr
    ChristyRunStarr Posts: 1,600 Member
    I have both-a Polar FT4 (and a Garmin Forunner that I use sometimes instead) and a Fibit One.

    I use the Polar whenever I work out and use those calories burned for entering in here. I wear my Fitbit all day and night to get an ideea of steps and calories burned-being a receptionist, it helps me to move more while at work.

    I like them both but if I had to pick, I'd get the HRM first then later if you want, the Fitbit. Unless you're trying to move more and not trying to figure out calories burned, then get the Fitbit
  • alienrite
    alienrite Posts: 314 Member
    I find the Fitbit the best for adjusting my daily calorie goal based upon my activity level but it is more of a gadget then a tool. HRM is a tool which you can use for a variety of feedback on any cardio workouts. Overall, I never would have accomplished what I did without my HRM but it took a long time and quite a bit of reading and research on how to use it best. The Fitbit is an immediate feedback which is good (not great) and I enjoy using on a daily basis.
  • WaterBunnie
    WaterBunnie Posts: 1,370 Member
    Are you looking to increase your general activity or relying on workouts? I have both but would say the FitBit is what's made me do more.
  • MightyDomo
    MightyDomo Posts: 1,265 Member
    Just like the other person above ^^ I use an HRM and BodyMedia Fit LINK armband together, the armband doesn't always measure strength training as well as an HRM.

    So based off the fact that you want to use it for workouts and walking I would suggest a Fitness Monitor like the BodyMedia LINK as it has a pedometer and can measure your daily activity and give you a pretty good plan for eating and exercising. However if you are doing a lot of strength training and not just cardio then I would pair the armband with an HRM like I've done (certain Garmin models sync up with the LINK) or just get and HRM for measuring activity.
  • marylou1976
    marylou1976 Posts: 105 Member
    I brought a fitbit, used it for a month then sold it on ebay, It's a great little device, tells you how many steps you've taken, how many flights of stairs you've climbed and if you get the ultra also tells you how long you've slept for etc, once I got over the novelty of it I thought it was just a very expensive pedometer, you can pick up a pedometer for less then £10. Also it automaticaly syncs with MFP so on the days I was not exercising and doing my day to day chores it would give me 300 exercise cals (sometomes more) and I would eat them back.
    So IMHO a HRM would be a much better purchase
  • selenametts
    selenametts Posts: 42 Member
    i have both (fitbit one and Polar FT4). I use the HRM during planned exercise to record accurate calorie burns. it does well for cardio workouts, underestimates for kettlebells/weight lifting or strength training. the fit bit i wear all day, including during workouts to determine daily calorie burn through normal activity. i refer to the fit bits calorie burn on days of no exercise so i can eat more than my daily calorie goal on MFP (which is a too low 1200). helps me feel less guilty since it shows I actually do have a decent calorie deficit :) the fitbit would be great for walks. if you plan on more intense cardio the HRM would be an excellent addition to the fit bit since it measures the increase in your heart rate.
  • selenametts
    selenametts Posts: 42 Member
    oh and for jillian michaels workouts I'd say the HRM would give you a better idea of calorie burn if that's what you want to know. the fit bit will show an increase in activity at that time but again it won't pick up on the increased heart rate (which you will definitely have with her workouts) :)
  • tgibbons1935
    tgibbons1935 Posts: 85 Member
    I have a Polar FT7 and a BodyMedia Fit and use both of them every day. I wear the BodyMedia all day long and it tracks my calories burned, steps, etc. and I wear the chest strap for the FT7 when I am actually working out so I can monitor my heart rate. I think the Fitbit does the same thing as the BMF but I like the BMF better because of the reports and tracking that it does. Good luck to you.
  • BillRicks1
    BillRicks1 Posts: 473 Member
    Both my wife and myself have the FitBit One and use the Aria scale. Simple! Wear the FitBit, jump on the scale and it all syncs wirelessly with our laptops. Bonus - all that information also syncs with MFP as well.