Jawbone UP: I thought I needed to walk, but I really needed to sleep! #VZWBUZZ

PRODUCTS, REVIEWS & CONTESTS | | May 29, 2013 at 11:42 am

So being a Verizon Insider does have its perks, and one of them happened to be taking the Jawbone UP for a testdrive. What is the UP? It is a bracelet which you wear that monitors your steps and sleep. Steps and sleep? That is really understating it. First off let me tell you why I care so much about this. I started Barre classes and hitting the gym. My daughter has been doing the BOKS Kids program (part of Reebok) at her school and wears a pedometer. I started to monitor my weight loss online (more on that later). I was frustrated by the lack of quality pedometers out there that would reset in a heartbeat.

Notice something of a pattern? All my reasons dealt with the exercise bit, not so much with the sleep bit. I have always been a workaholic and have (tried to) live life to the fullest with the adage:

I will sleep when I am dead!

Yeah, that kinda does not work so much at 40! When I started this blog 5 years ago I spent nights working and while I still do, I am not so ready to face the day. Recently looking at myself in pictures and I found myself finding not only my weight issue distasteful (read my saga on that) but also that my face looked tired and haggard. I looked old! I was surprised when I spoke to a friend who said she wakes up later than I but goes to bed earlier, and she chuckled that she needed her beauty sleep. Heard those words before but that day, as I stared at the bags under my eyes, the words sank in!

But I did nothing!

I got the Jawbone UP and immediately downloaded the app. Let the step counting begin. Although it has an alarm built in, I never used that feature. I also toyed with removing it when I slept. I did not need something to tell me I slept too little, that I knew already! What I didn’t know: I was only in deep sleep for a short time and I woke up several times during the night. No seriously this device knew that. The engineer in me marvels at the innovation of the UP but the dreamer in me thinks it is magic.

So I gave myself a pep talk to sleep. I was averaging 4 hours a night of sleep but managed to get a few 6 hours plus after I started monitoring my sleep. Granted that that was still not the ideal amount of sleep but considering my starting point, it was a good direction. While signs of aging still remained it was pretty clear after a few nights how much better my skin looked. Forget my skin, my kids are pretty excited not to have a cranky mom – sleep )or lack thereof) has a way of bringing the worst out in people.

Steps was something I thought I was taking, but apparently not enough. Part of me wished there was a display of the steps as I took them but part of me was grateful for not having another distraction. ┬áTo sync the UP was easy to insert directly into the iPhone and charging it was using the USB which is great because I have them for all charging devices in the house. Someone mentioned that it does not, unlike other pedometers, count driving as steps and I figure that might be true since I spend a lot of time playing “mom taxi” and don’t have steps to show for it.

It is supposed to be waterproof so I do the dishes in them. Paranoid me does not shower in it though and it is the only time I ever take it off. Putting it in day or sleep mode is just the tap of a button – easy peasy! Now to be fair this device does not only measure steps but gives you some pretty good stats on Active Time, Longest Idle etc, which allows you to take a closer look at your day and adjust for future planning. Also a great reminder of how long I am sitting instead of moving and a nudge to get moving.

Sadly this past weekend I decided to live life on the edge and used it at an indoor waterpark and lost it in the lazy river. I am not ready to mourn its loss and hope you are crossing fingers and thumbs that they find it.

Disclosure: I am a Verizon Wireless Lifestyle blogger!

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