Anyone who has tried to lose a significant amount of weight or embarked on a fitness plan knows that you’re on a journey. There really is no final destination where you just stop working out or just stop eating healthy, and that’s because it’s far too easy to undo all of your hard work if you trade in your runners for a box of donuts.
When you find yourself about to falter, the best way to stay on the straight and narrow and keep heading toward your fitness goals are by using fitness tools. Devices like smart watches will monitor your activity and steps, and smart scales like the Withings Body Cardio Wi-Fi scale will fill in the gap and let you know exactly whether you’re losing fat, muscle, or just steadily losing weight.
If you’ve ever felt like your bathroom scale is your best friend, only to want to toss it out the window the next week, I think you’ll love the Withings Body Cardio Wi-Fi Smart Scale. I was really surprised at all of the data you can get while using it, and everything is synced straight to the Nokia/Withings app on your phone.
Here’s a look at the Withings Body Cardio scale, what it can do, and how it works.
Appearance and features of the Withings Body Cardio
The Withings Body Cardio is a light, slim scale. It measures at just one inch thick, so it’s easy to slide under a cabinet or beside your counter.
It has a shiny, mirror like appearance and the area you step on the scale is clearly outlined with lines showing you where to put your feet.
In addition to tracking your weight, the Withings Body Cardio will:
- Monitor your body fat, muscle mass, water percentage, and bone mass
- Takes your daily heart rate
- Shows you the weather for that day
- Shows you your step count
- Sends all data to the Nokia/Withings app so you can analyze your trends and see how you compare to fitness norms
- Rechargeable battery charges via USB
- Has 8 user profiles so everyone in the family can track their weight and other metrics
Why you would want the Withings Cardio
A smart scale offers the user a completely different experience than a standard bathroom scale. Consider this scenario: you’ve been working out every day, eating right, and trying to stick to your fitness plan. When you weigh yourself you expect to see a drop in your weight, but instead the scale tips forward. Who wouldn’t be upset, especially when you consider you probably have no idea at all why you’ve gained instead of lost.
With a smart scale like the Withings Body Cardio, you won’t wonder why the scale is going one way or the other. With all the data it sends you, you’ll have a pretty good idea if your BMI has dropped instead of your weight or if your muscle mass has jumped because of all those weights you’ve been lifting.
Setting up the Withings Body Cardio Wi-Fi smart scale
The Withings Body Cardio is a rechargeable scale, so it doesn’t need batteries. It comes with a USB charger you plug into the wall, so that’s the first step to using it. It takes about 5 hours to fully charge the scale, and how long the charge will last will depend on how often you weigh yourself.
Once its charged you can add the Withings Body Cardio to your Nokia/Withings Health Mate app. I have the Withings Steel HR fitness watch and the Withings Thermo at home, so I’ve had the app for awhile. Adding the new device is very easy and should only take a minute or two, but if you do run into issues there’s a help section within the app.
I had trouble getting the scale to show up on the app, but I went into my Bluetooth settings and added the new device from there. Once I connected it to Bluetooth, I went back into the app and it recognized the scale.
Testing out the Withings Body Cardio
I already have a Withings smart scale, so I knew how the Withings Body Cardio should work. This scale had a few more features than my own scale does, and you can go into the app settings so you can see as many or as few of them as you’d like when you’re weighing yourself.
I choose all the options and then stepped on the scale. Let me start by saying that I don’t like to weigh myself. Checking in once per week has been one of the most challenging parts of my weight loss journey, because the scale would go up when I was convinced it would go down. That’s when I was at my most discouraged.
With the Withings Body Cardio I was prepared to see data that would let me know what was going on ‘behind the scenes’ when I weighed myself. The first thing I noticed was that the scale will tell you how to position yourself so it can take the most accurate weight. It flashes arrows showing you which way to lean.
I was curious to know how much my weight had changed from the week before when I weighed myself at the gym, and I was kind of surprised it was telling me I was 5 pounds heavier than when I last weighed myself. That didn’t seem right, but I stood by and watched the rest of the data come in.
Turns out, you have to place the Withings Body Cardio in one spot and leave it there. Withings recommends you keep your scale in the same spot and don’t move it around. If you do, let it have about 10 minutes to sit flat on a surface before weighing. If you see all four corners of the scale flashing when you’re weighing yourself, you could be moving around too much and you might receive an inaccurate measurement. You’ll also have to enter your height and age in the app so it can give you the most accurate assessment of your BMI and muscle mass.
As long as you’re still standing on the scale, you’ll receive the data you set up in your app. The data you can receive includes:
- BMI (Body Mass Index): a measure of your fat based on your weight in relation to your height
- Muscle Mass: your lean body mass, or how much of your body weight is made up of muscle instead of fat
- Bone Mass: the weight of your bones in your body
- Water mass: the amount of fluid in your body
- Fat mass: how much of your body is made up of fat
- Steps taken: how many steps you’ve taken that day. You can receive this information if you’re also wearing a Withings/Nokia fitness watch like the Withings Steel HR
- Heart rate: the scale will take your heart rate simply by you standing on the scale
I wasn’t sure what I should be looking for as far as my BMI and Muscle Mass, but given that I work out every day, I thought one should be lower than the number I was given and the other should be higher. You can find a comparison chart for all of these measurements on the Withings/Nokia website.
Just like any scale you’ll step on, your data can vary from morning to night. My weight went plus 2 pounds and minus 2 pounds a few times, and it will show you right on the scale how much weight you’ve lost or gained. I found my Bone mass stayed consistent, but my Muscle Mass went up and down while my BMI stayed in a high range. That seemed unusual considering I’ve been on a diet for over a year and I know I’m out of the overweight range, but it could have been that I had moved it prior to standing on the scale.
All of this data is instantly sent to the app, so you can compare day to day stats. My advice, for the most accurate numbers, is to weigh yourself every day for a week without moving the scale. I think to make the most of a scale like this, you really need a few weeks of consistent weighing in to see your numbers remain constant.
Overall thoughts on the Withings Wi-Fi scale
I still don’t like to weigh myself all the time, but I definitely feel better about it when I weigh myself on the Withings Body Cardio Smart Scale. If I’m bloated, the water number will go up, and it’s nice to know that’s why the scale tipped. I’m also encouraged by the amount of muscle I’ve built, and I wish I would have had that reading before because I could have watched it grow over time.
Whether you don’t like to weigh yourself or you really want to jump on that scale every day, the Withings Body Cardio will be a great tool to use on your fitness journey. You can find your own Withings Body Cardio scale, available in white or black, right now on Best Buy.