January – that time of year when everyone says this will be the year they workout more (or actually start working out) and live a healthier lifestyle. As a personal trainer, I’m often asked how I stay motivated. My newest obsession – Fitbit!
This is my pink Fitbit on my fluorescent yellow sneakers. More on these sneakers later.
I know Fitbit has been around for a while. But I never paid much attention until this past fall, when I realized my iPhone had a health tracker and I could keep track of how many steps I took and how many miles I walked each day. The only problem is that you must have your iPhone on your person. So I started carrying my phone around everywhere, even in the house. My husband noticed and asked why I was surgically attached to my cell phone.
I realized how inefficient it was so I asked for a Fitbit for Christmas. I wanted a Zip because I didn’t want to wear something around my wrist. When I used to own a gym in New York City, I always wore a watch since I had to be on time for clients and classes. But ever since we moved to the lake, I’ve shed myself of those shackles. The other Fitbits also have more capabilities, but I only wanted to track steps and miles.
I love my Fitbit. I set my goals per day to be:
10,000 steps, 5 miles, 1,800 calories burned and 30 active minutes.
I noticed on the days when I go into the city to train people, I exceed my goals easily.
Wow, 17,866 steps and 73 active minutes without really trying! Makes me feel like I can do this:
I didn’t know I could still get my leg up that high! Pinot seems most unimpressed.
But then I put my leg down and immediately went, “Ouch.” Okay, maybe I’m too old to be kicking my leg up in the air like that.
Must stretch that leg out. And by the way, I love my bright yellow sneakers. Someone in my class asked me if I wanted to make sure they could see me.
On the days when I don’t go into the city and don’t teach a class (such as this lazy Sunday), my stats look like this:
Actually, that’s not bad for a lazy Sunday. I still managed to get in 32 active minutes.
And now here is why I think a Fitbit is a great motivating tool. When I notice at the end of the day that I’m not at my set goals, I start running around the house until I reach those goals.
Must. Get. In. 10,000. Steps. Must. Burn. At. Least. 1,800. Calories.
My dogs think I’ve lost my mind. I bring them upstairs when it’s time for bed and they’re used to me getting in bed and maybe reading. But suddenly, I start running around the bedroom and up and down the stairs to try to get those last steps or miles in.
That’s Lokie at the top of the stairs wondering what her crazy Person is doing.
But when your Fitbit stats show this:
and you’re so close to getting in those 5 miles and 1,800 calories burned, a little stair running will do it.
Even if your dachshunds can’t understand why you are running up and down the stairs when it’s time to sleep.
Umm, Person. Have you lost your mind?
You can also connect with Friends on Fitbit, and help motivate each other to see who took the most steps or walked the most miles every day. It’s a great way to keep yourself motivated, making some people park their car further away to get in the extra steps, or doing laps around the grocery store.
So if you need motivation to get moving and stay active, I think a Fitbit is a great motivating tool. It really gets me going, as I’m competitive with myself. And don’t forget, it makes me feel like this:
Ouch. No more kicking for me.