There are so many tools out there we can utilize to make fitness a truly integral part of our lives. One of these tools is the apps on our smart phones and various fitness gadgets. We are launching a new series called THESTRIVETOFIT App & Gadget review where we discuss mobile applications and gadgets related to fitness.
Our third episode features Sleep Cycle, an app that tracks your sleep based on your phones movements (place on bed) and also functions as a gentle alarm. This app tracks the depth and quality of your sleep based on your movement during sleep. It’s not a perfect science, but basically the phone assumes you’re in deep sleep if you move around less/stay still vs. light sleep or awake if you’re constantly tossing and turning.
Disclaimer: I have no idea how accurate this app is, especially since I have a cat who will jump in and out of my bed throughout the night. However, one thing I have noticed is that I always have a much easier time waking up with this app’s alarm. The alarm is set with a 30 minute window during which the app determines your lightest sleep state. It then gently vibrates and plays soft music to wake you up.
As for the number of hours in bed, it is determined by (as far as I can tell) the alarm that you set on the phone and your time “in bed” ends once you turn off the alarm. There has been several days when I simply turned off the alarm and went back to bed so again, this measure isn’t the best available measure– but for those who are strict with themselves in terms of waking up the first time an alarm goes off, it should be a relatively good measure of how long you have been “resting.”
Finally, the app also syncs with Apple Health app which consolidates all health-related data taken from various apps on your iPhone.