The following post is sponsored by FitFluential LLC on behalf of Under Armour.
I love the idea of tracking my workouts and taking note of where my performance levels are at. In fact, I think the the concept is genius and totally underrated.
I found that out after using a performance monitor for three separate and completely different types of workouts yesterday.
Before you think I’m a crazy fitness fiend, know I’m not. I am just a fitness enthusiast and a professional dancer who sometimes has workouts incorporated into practices. Pair that with the occasional fitness review and there you have my insanely high activity days.
I try my best to keep track of my workouts and effort levels. I’m not always one hundred percent on top of it, but I usually have a ball park sense of how hard I worked, and – in turn – if I can indulge in that extra cookie or two for dessert without it totally defeating the purpose.
I am not usually a calorie counter, but I found it very comforting to know my stats at the end of my extremely active day yesterday.
Included in my package was the performance monitor module, chest strap, and instructions to download the free mobile app. Not part of this campaign is the Armour39 display watch I am absolutely swooning over!
• Mobile App: FREE
App is compatible with iPhone 4S, 5, 5C, 5S, iPod touch (5th generation), iPad 4, and iPad mini.
This tracks your heart rate, calories, intensity, and WILLpower stats.
• Performance Monitor Module + Chest Strap: $99.99
The sweatproof (not waterproof) stay-put chest strap stores your information and syncs it with the Armour39 app or watch in real time.
• Display Watch: $199.99 (<- want!)
An alternative display to the mobile app that lets you take the same technology on the go.
So… how is this performance monitor different from all of the others?
The Armour 39 system is designed for any type of athlete and any sport. The setup is easy and takes just about fifteen minutes, including a ten minute fitness assessment to get the most accurate read on your workouts.
WILLPower. Simply put, the system awards you and your level of booty kickin’ on your workout a number (0.0 to 10.0).
Knowing I had an active day ahead of me, I took advantage of it to really test this tracking system out.
First, I put the module in the chest strap, fitted it to my body, and downloaded the mobile app.
If I had access to a treadmill I would have also completed the ten minute assessment test to get the most accurate readings. I still plan on doing it, but created my profile in the mean time.
Second, I put the heart rate monitor to the test with a quick at-home cardio kickboxing session. The workout is supposed to include fifteen more minutes of arm and core work, but I decided to cut it early knowing I had a lot to save my body for later that night.
Here are my stats from workout #1: Cardio Kickboxing
Unlike most monitors that average heart rate data, this one captures every moment and heart beat of your workout. I liked that. I also appreciated being able to see exactly when I was working the hardest.
I took the strap off for a few hours and put it back on right when I arrived at our practice facility. We had been warned that a workout would take place during practice and I was curious to see exactly how difficult it would be.
I started tracking our workout from the moment we started warming up. From there we did a series of suicide sprints, Indian runs (where you form a single line and rotate sprinting from back to front), lunges, planks, jump squats, arm, and core exercises. It wasn’t exactly easy.
Here are my stats for workout #2: Boot Camp (Practice)
I wasn’t sure if the system was going to work throughout the entire thing, since I wasn’t going to be holding my phone or have it near me. Luckily, the Bluetooth connection has my back and records workout data even when I’m out of range.
During all of that “empty time” on the heart rate and intensity screen shots, we were sprinting. Had I have been in range, I’m sure those charts would look a lot more lively.
Regardless, I was pretty impressed with the WILLpower level of 7.36 for the 1 hour 18 minute workout.
Just when I wanted to tucker out, we had a dance practice to get through! I have always been curious to see how many calories we burn cleaning, setting, and running dances during practices. After I let my teammates in on what I was doing, a lot of them were just as excited to see the results.
Because of the included workout, this specific practice only lasted an hour and a half compared to the normal three to four hour rehearsals.
Here are my stats for workout #3: Dance Practice
I was happy to see that I was in range for 95% of it. That one little segment that went uncharted must have been when I walked over to the bathroom.
Finally, the results were in! Close to 600 calories, a WILLpower level of 6.53 and an impressive heart rate max out at 181. Looking at the intensity chart (right screen shot), I can tell exactly when I had to run our dances the hardest too. It’s a neat thing to see!
I don’t always like fancy gadgets attached to me during my workouts, but when I do I see a lot of Armour39 in my future.
I have to admit, though, that I am not always a fan of chest straps for heart rate monitors. In the past, I have had trouble with consistent readings due to my petite body frame. Even at the tightest adjustment, the one I had been using still moves around on me, which tends to lose my heart rate measurements for some of the workout time.
Although this one seems thicker, I liked that the chest strap came with an extender that allows more tightening and loosening ranges.
Unlike a lot of performance monitors out there, I also liked how this one lets me see my effort levels and fitness stats at any given time during the workout. Half way through, I can pop in and see exactly what my WILLpower or calorie burn is at.
Overall, the system is very easy to understand and operate. I am interested to see how well the watch tracks the workout compared to the mobile app.
I like the Bluetooth capabilities of the mobile app, but think I would prefer to track the results on my watch and save my phone battery. But, for what it’s worth, it didn’t even seem to drain my battery that much either.
An overall win for this performance monitor!