Fitness Trackers Have the Potential to Make us Crazy

Peter Drucker, the famous management consultant is credited with saying, “what gets measured gets managed.” Over the past several years device manufacturers like Fitbit and Garmin have created fitness tracking devices that enable wearers to measure — and ultimately manage — their health. But might some of us unwittingly use fitness data to mismanage our minds and our bodies?

Earlier this year, on Amazon Prime Day, I picked up a Garmin Forerunner 235 for a smoking good price. I had read Gerow’s review of the watch, and tired of carrying my iPhone to record jogs around the neighborhood, I treated myself to a new piece of wearable tech. It’s a fantastic watch and I get a ton of use out of it.

As I began using the watch’s features and accompanying smartphone app, I noticed that some disturbing thoughts started creeping into my head. For starters, the Garmin Connect app allows users to track their body weight over time. I began entering my body weight anytime I stepped on the bathroom scale, and the app helpfully let me know if my weight increased or decreased since the last entry.

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