Fitness trackers are some of the most practical must-have smart gadgets. Designed to help you keep track of your steps, your daily activity, your heart rate, and even your calorie intake, these little bands can be a great tool to help you change your lifestyle and live a healthier life.
For most people, when they hear "fitness tracker," the first one that comes to mind is Fitbit. While it's easily one of the most popular and well known brands, it isn't necessarily the best fitness gadget on the market.
Here are five other fitness tracker with even more to offer than Fitbit.
Garmin vivoactive HR ($199.99)
Garmin is easily one of the biggest names in fitness gadgets, offering some of the most comprehensive trackers in the industry. The vivoactive HR is probably the best overall fitness tracker for active individuals, offering step and heart rate tracking as well as accurate time and distance tracking for running, cycling or swimming.
It's not the sleekest fitness watch on the market, but it's one of the best when it comes to accurate GPS-based tracking. The heart rate tracking is pretty accurate, though it's not as good as the tracking that can be provided by a chest strap. That said, though, wrist-based optical heart rate monitoring is getting more and more accurate every year. If you're active and need to keep track of your peak heart rate during your activities, this is a great choice for you.
TomTom Touch ($129.99)
If you're using your fitness gadget to assist you in losing weight, then the TomTom Touch is an awesome choice. This sleek little wristband offers sleep and step monitoring in addition to keeping track of your heart rate 24 hours a day.
The one thing that sets it apart from other fitness trackers is the sensor on the watch itself, which is able to analyze your body's muscle and fat percentages. Similar to using a BMI calculator, it can give you an idea of how healthy of a weight you're at and also guess at your fat-to-muscle ratio. Using this information, you can decide whether you need to focus on cardio, strength training or a more balanced combination of the two.
The Touch itself is also water-resistant and has a battery that will last up to five days, so you don't have to delay your workout while you're waiting for it to charge.
Jawbone UP3 ($68.95)
When you're active, sleep is just as important as the number of steps you take every day. With this in mind, a lot of fitness gadgets have started incorporating sleep tracking into their hardware, but no one has done it quite like the Jawbone UP3. This tracker could almost double as a fashionable bracelet, and offers the most comprehensive sleep tracking on the market today, in addition to heart rate and step monitoring.
By keeping track of your heart rate as well as other variables like body temperature, respiration and even your galvanic skin response, the Jawbone UP3 is able to track your sleep patterns and can even discern the difference between light sleep, deep sleep and REM.
Garmin vivosmart HR+ ($149.99)
The Garmin vivosmart HR+is the second entry on this list from tech giant Garmin, but it's definitely worth a nod. While still a little bulky when compared to some of the other wearable tech on this list, it's a perfect purchase for someone who wants the accuracy of GPS tracking without having to haul around a bulky smartphone to track your path.
This gadget also offers step tracking, sleep monitoring and heart rate monitoring. You can keep track of all of this information and more on the mobile app. While it's not as good as the Vivoactive HR that we mentioned above, it's a fantastic starter fitness tracker with a price tag to match.
Polar A360 ($199.95)
With sharp lines and stainless steel accents, the Polar A360 is a great addition to this list. Not only is it not as bulky as some of the other fitness trackers we've mentioned, but it's also the perfect step-up for people who are used to using a basic step tracker. This handy little gadget offers activity tracking as well as step, calorie and workout monitoring. It tracks your sleep, too!
Unlike some of the other entries on this list, the A360 is actually waterproof (not water-resistant) up to 30 meters, so it's a great option if your cardio of choice includes hitting the pool. It's a little more expensive than other fitness trackers in the same class, but for what it offers, the extra padding on the price tag is totally worth it.
If you're looking for a new fitness tracker, or you're doing some research to help you purchase your first one, just know that Fitbit isn't your only option. There are plenty of fitness gadget options out there to meet all of your workout needs.