Google Fit is Google’s answer to Apple Health. Both of these apps are designed to help monitor your physical exercise and improve your health. I bet there are a lot of you out there that didn’t even know it existed. I actually had the app already on my phone and did not even realize it. After I discovered it, I decided to give it a test run.
There are a lot of fitness apps out there and while I don’t think Google Fit is the best, it is definitely something worth looking into and something worth looking into. Google Fit recently had a huge update partnering with the American Heart Association to provide a more unique and tailored approach to fitness tracking. I am going to break down exactly how to use Google Fit and whether you should.
Google Fit has a very simple and easy to understand interface without a depth of over complicated menus and options. When you first install Google Fit, all you will need to input are your height and weight which will help determine the amount of calories your body burns naturally throughout the day.
The main menu contains the two most important trackers which are move minutes and heart points. Below these two measurements you will see your steps, calories burned, and miles traversed so far that day. At the top of the screen will be your picture with two circles going around it with the blue arrow represents your move minutes and the two green arrows representing heart points. The arrows circle around your picture denoting your progress so far.
The last two menu items at the bottom are heart rate which can only be monitored through a wearable tracking device such as a smart watch and your current weight that you can manually input whenever you make changes.
A Navigation bar at the very bottom will let you switch between the home screen as described above and your journal or profile. I will cover the journal and profile below.
Let’s dive into what move minutes are and how they work. Move minutes are basically the low-stress routine physical activities you complete over the course of the day. Move minutes track every movement such as walking, biking, or household chores. Google Fit counts each minute with 30 or more steps as a Move Minute.
There are a variety of unique activities that can be counted as Move Minutes but activities outside of walking and biking such as kettle bell, golfing, or soccer will need to be inputted manually through the plus icon on the main screen. Strength training and weight training also fall under this category which I think is of course the cornerstone to men self-care.
You are free to set your own Move Minute goal in the profile section of the app. The American Heart Association recommends at 150 minutes of moderate exercise per week which averages out to be around 22 minutes per day. It is up to you what goal you will set but of course push it to the limit.
Heart Points make up the other half of Google Fit. While Move Minutes cover basic routine activities, Heart Points involve more strenuous exercise that gets your heart pumping, hence the name. These can be the same activities as with your Move Minutes just performed more strenuously.
For every minute of moderate activity, you earn one Heart Point, and you earn two points for every minute of vigorous activity. The points are calculated this way so that you can more balance the time of your workout. The harder you work then the faster you can reach your goal.
Just like Move Minutes, you can set your own Heart Points goal in the profile section. The American Heart Association recommends 75 minutes of vigorous exercise per week which is around 150 Heart Points.
Keep a Journal
The last feature I will mention is the Journal which can be accessed by the bottom navigation bar. Here is where you will track any of your activities that are outside the realm of walking or biking. You can also record your blood pressure, add a record of your current weight, or track your current workout.
Keeping a journal of your records can help reinforce positive activities as well give you a clear view on what’s working for you and what’s not. I think it is a great and handy feature that can really make a difference in how you view your exercise routine.
Getting Better All The Time
Google Fit seems to be reaching a turning point after being relatively static since its inception in 2014. The addition of Move Minutes and Heart Points brings a unique addition to what was originally a pretty basic fitness app. Reviews have been lukewarm for a while now, but I think that will start to change as people adapt to its new functions.
As time goes on, more and more apps are being added to Google Fit’s connectivity feature. You can link it to other fitness apps such as the Renpho Bluetooh Body Fat Scale app which I highly recommend. As you monitor your weight daily, the results can be instantly carried over into Google Fit. You can find a complete list of the compatible apps here.
Google continually fine-tunes and improves their products over time, and I think now is a great time to jump in and help test out and provide feedback on Google Fit. I see it slowly becoming something great.
There are a lot of fitness apps out there, and I think you should find the one that works for you. Whether Google Fit works for you depends on a variety of factors and exactly what you are looking for in your exercise routine. It isn’t the most sophisticated but its ability to link into a variety of other apps makes it miles ahead of competitors.
Also, if you are the kind of person who enjoys the Google suite of products then you owe it to yourself to try it out and at least provide constructive feedback to Google in order to make its quality up there with other top-tier Google products.
Google Fit is no matter what a very easy and simplistic tool to use with its core concepts of Move Minutes and Heart Points very easy to understand and flexible enough to adapt to a multitude of lifestyles. If this is the one thing that motivates you to get moving then why not give it a try. You deserve it.