I received a gift on my birthday that would ultimately change the way I exercise. After using the Polar FT7 watch for nearly two months, I have fallen in love with this nifty fitness gadget. I recommend any athlete, gym rat, or newbies to the fitness world to go out and buy one as soon as you can. Here is why:

The Polar FT7 is a smart watch that tracks the many aspects of your daily workouts. Not only does it tell you how long your have been working out, but it also tells you how many calories you have burnt and the time you spent strictly fat burning and enhancing your fitness.

This watch accomplishes this feat by wirelessly connecting to a heart rate monitor that you wear in conjunction with the watch. The monitor is attached to a strap that fits around right under your chest. Do not worry, you will forget the strap is even there when you begin your workout. Once connected, the watch is able to correctly estimate your heart rate throughout the workout.

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Photo by Quan Siler

When you first receive your Polar watch, you must enter your height, weight and age into the watch so your caloric readings will be more accurate.

One of the most useful aspects of this gadget is when you disconnect the heart rate monitor, the Polar watch turns into a regular, digital watch. Because it comes in fun colors and does not appear to be a fitness toy, you can wear this watch all day.

The watch is also sweat and waterproof, which means you can swim and still track your heart rate and calories.

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What I really I love about this product is its ability to automatically track your workouts for months. It is pretty simple to calculate how many calories your burnt today, this entire week or this entire month.

The Polar FT7 has truly changed the way I work out. For example, instead of focusing on how long I’ve been on the treadmill, I pay more attention to where my heart rate is. I know the higher my heart rate is, the more calories I will burn per minute of exercise. This is also helping to increase my aerobic fitness level by sustaining longer time with an elevated heart rate.

I got my watch as gift, but you can purchase the Polar FT7 on Amazon.com for $79.99 or on Polar.com for $119.95. The heart rate monitor and strap are included.

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