Garmin's Vivosmart HR is the latest, greatest fitness tracker

Heart rate monitors are all the rage these days, and with good reason. A couple of years ago, when I was fairly "hefty" and not at all feeling good about my lot in life, I decided to do something about it. I bought a Fitbit tracker and set about trying to reach a goal of 10,000 steps a day. It quickly became something like a video game for me; could I read 10,000 every single day? How about 20,000? Could I reach a million steps taken in a single year?

I am not exaggerating when I say the Fitbit changed my life. I ultimately lost 35 pounds. I got back in the gym. I started eating healthy foods again. And it all started because of this silly wristband thing that I wore every day.

If you're in that same boat, and you're looking to get healthy, there's no better place to start than with a simple fitness tracker. Garmin has a new variation of its Vivosmart HR tracker out now, and it does some pretty nifty stuff. It tracks steps taken, of course, but it also adds in a really cool feature: it has a built-in heart rate monitor that works in conjunction with a barometric altimeter to better track the activities you do at higher altitudes.

The Vivosmart HR runs for five days on a single charge. Another cool feature? It'll softly vibrate if it senses that you've been sitting down for too long. It happens; we all get caught up in work, and before you know it, you've been sitting at your desk for five straight hours. The Vivosmart will remind you to get up every once in awhile, and that's good for your health.

There are tons of fitness trackers out there. Fitbit has a brand new line of great ones. The Apple Watch is a fitness tracker, but it's not a great one. Your iPhone is a fitness tracker, too, though it's desperately wanting in many areas. But if you're looking for something that's dedicated, while also giving you great feedback on all the hiking or climbing you do, the Vivosmart HR might be the best choice of them all.

The Vivosmart retails for $150 and is available now.

What do you think?