When I first began testing Ember by Cercacor, I wasn’t sure what I was getting myself into.
Ember is a training tool used to measure blood levels and blood data non-invasively.
In full-on training mode, I have always checked my blood levels by heading to a clinic and paying around $300 and waiting anywhere from 5-7 days to get my full results back. So having this new tool Ember by Cercacor was totally new. It took a measure of my blood levels instantly without needles and at a reading cost of less than $3 dollars per reading. Above all I hate needles so how cool is it that it draws no blood!?!!
As I began using the product I only used it at the beginning of the day as it was always nice to see my heart rate and hemoglobin data. Yet as the season went on, I began to use it not only first thing in the morning but also after training, resting, and at night before bed. This was good to see how my body was reacting to stress and recovery due to training.
As an athlete knowing where your body is instantly in terms of rest, hemoglobin, hydration and a few other factors that Ember measures was impressive and if you're an athlete like me it becomes a bit addicting. :)
Heading to altitude training in New Mexico and taking daily measurements, is where I started to see my fitness improve not only that, the numbers were quite significant going from a heart rate of ~55 BPM to about ~42 BPM .
The next factor that I enjoyed seeing was my hemoglobin levels rise at altitude. Initially my hemoglobin levels were at 15.5 g/dl and as my fitness improved and incorporating altitude training it climbed up to 16.7 g/d at its highest and maintained for about a month. As we know it usually takes about a month for the altitude take affect and to wear off, but seeing the results that my body was going through instantly was very impressive but most importantly informative.
As I went on through the season, another really cool factor that I enjoyed keeping track of was being able to see how my hydration levels were especially after travel.
With an average of 11 for the pleth variability index (PVI is the variation in perfusion index (ratio of pulsing blood to non-pulsing blood) over your breathing cycle) any change over or below gave me a good indication of how my hydration was. For example if one day after travel or hard exercise I was at 17 I knew that I could be slightly dehydrated vs a 9 for well hydrated.
Using Ember has been a great learning experience and it has also allowed me to be more in tune with my body by seeing my blood levels instantly. If you are an athlete, an avid runner, or just starting in the sport this little tool can be your best friend as you begin your training for any distance.
For more info or to see how you can get a hold of an Ember check out their website: