Heart rate trackers are popping up everywhere with serious athletes and weekend warriors alike. Should you wear one, too? Yes, and here’s why.

Heart rate trackers make it harder to delude yourself
One reason weight loss can be challenging is many of us overestimate the number of calories burned with exercise and underestimate calories consumed with meals. We assume lots of sweat and heavy breathing means we burned a ton of calories. Of course, it follows that we think we can enjoy more ice cream or pasta as a reward. Not so fast! We aren’t always burning as many calories as we think we are. Wearing a heart rate tracker eliminates the guess (or wish) work and gives you more accurate numbers. You’ll have a better idea of how many calories you’ve actually burned, and can use that information to plan meals and activities for more successful weight loss.

Adjust as needed
You will gain strength and stamina as you continue working out. Go you! What you may not realize is that you will probably also burn fewer calories. As the body learns to work perform the task with less effort, calorie counts will fall. Wearing a heart rate tracker can help you see where you need to step up your game. Ideas include adding more intensity, time or including intervals.

Know when you go too far
Just like heart rate trackers can tell when you are doing too little, they can tell when you’re doing too much. Overdoing exercise can do more harm than good so it is wise to keep an eye on heart rate. Stay within the appropriate range for your age, gender and fitness level.

Chart your progress
Heart rate trackers make it easier to monitor heart rate recovery after exercise. As you build cardiovascular strength and endurance, you’ll recover more quickly. That’s something to feel proud about and can be very motivating especially on the days the scale just won’t seem to move.

Some wise person once said, knowledge is power. That’s especially true when it comes to health and weight management. When you wear a heart rate tracker you put the power of knowledge to use for your good health. Know how hard you are working out, how many calories you use and understand the impact of exercise on your heart rate. With a heart rate tracker, you’ll trade delusion for more accurate numbers that add up to better success.