Thursday, April 4, 2013

Do you Fitbit??

I spent $60 on a pedometer a few months ago. It's called a Fitbit Zip, and I think it might be serious. Yes, it might be love.

The Fitbit is a high-tech pedometer that tracks your steps, mileage, and calories burned. The super part is that it syncs to your computer, so you get to see charts and graphs of how many steps you took each day, week, month, etc. You can also break down the day into five minute increments to see when you were the most active. You earn badges on the site for steps in a day and total distance. All of this is compelling, making it much more fun than a regular pedometer. Because I am a giant nerd.

BUT, I haven't even gotten to the super-awesome part yet. The super-awesome part is that you can compete against other friends who are on Fitbit. The leader board is based on a seven day running total, and it updates anytime someone syncs up their info. I have been pretty constantly logged in since I've gotten it. Because, for those of you who don't know me in real life, I am uber-crazy competitive. It can be a curse, but in this instance, it's a blessing. My competitive drive has made me work to get in way more steps than I normally would, simply because I am competing against my fiance and several other friends and relatives.

The competitive-factor has actually added many other benefits to my life. So, without further ado, here are the ways wearing a Fitbit has improved my quality of life:

1. Obviously, walking more is healthy. I am moving more, which research shows is important not just in working out, but in spending less time sitting down. So, this is the most important and most obvious benefit.
2. My house is cleaner, because when I want to get more steps in at the end of the night I go from room to room tidying up. I can get in a couple of hundred steps just by taking things from room to room to put them away.
3. I take out the trash a lot more. That's around 100 steps by itself. I used to avoid taking out the trash like the plague, but now I see it as an opportunity to squeeze in a few more steps.
4. I walk around my classroom more. This makes me a better teacher, since I am more aware of what all the students are doing and I am able to stop and help them when needed.
5. I watch less TV because I want to get steps in. Last week I went on several short walks and even went on a hike after work, simply because I like to win.
6. I have been walking on more of my errands (grocery store, post office, library, etc.) This is also a benefit for my wallet, since I save on gas.

Anyone else have a Fitbit? If so, let's be friends! I can't wait to beat you compete with you!

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