Now my rehab is in full flow I have become addicted to fuel points. I got a Nike+ Fuelband at the start of my rehab to record my steps and energy output, or whatever fuel points really are.
When I was looking at getting an exercise bike, above, I was trying to find the best bike with the best monitors. I worked out that I was looking at spending over £600 to get a really decent bit of kit, or £1,300 if I wanted to muck around on Google maps.
What I have settled for is a massive hodge bodge of kit, which I think gets me the best of everything. I got a racing style exercise bike without any techie bits, and with a £300 discount, a Nike Fuelband+ (£129) which can be used all the time, the latest iPod Nano(£108) which is paired to a polar heart rate Wearlink+ Nike (£46) so that plays music and monitors my fitness. All in all about the same price I would have paid for a techie bike but my rational was; I could use the different parts in multiple ways, not just with the bike and obviously MORE SHINY TECH STUFF.
Here is the interesting bit. Without any knowledge of wtf fuel points really are, they are very addictive. Each day that passes I am striving to beat the previous day or get my best day of the week or my best day ever or soak my goal (this is when you beat your goal by over 50%, over 100% you ice it). It also sets you milestones of reaching 25,000 fuel points, 50K and so on. The Fuelband is a great motivational tool, as with most things it can be cheated but if you are buying one, why cheat? Yes you can share the results with your friends and get competitive, but cheating them as well as yourself is even worse.
Nike has opened its APIs to third-party developers to bring greater health connection to the platform, which can only improve the users’ knowledge and assessment of the impact of any workout. The potential seems pretty endless for this little puppy but at some point it would be nice they told the public what on earth a fuel point is and how it is calculated. It uses an accelerometer to take the measurements but the points are not directly comparable, you don’t get the same amount of points for waving your arm in the air as you do for walking, and the same with running. I can’t imagine this is a perfect measurement but the key is that it is an motivational tool.
So the main point is a Fuelband is awesome but if you don’t have the heart, don’t buy the band. You should want to challenge and inspire yourself with your workouts and day to day activities, and for this it is the best thing ever.