For Christmas I got a fitness band – one of those wearable watch-looking devices. It tracks how active I am and how much I sleep. I love it! Let me tell you why.
Ever since I got the band I’ve worn it every single day. It lets me set a goal for my daily activity, i.e. 600 “points” which equates to roughly an hour of walking. It tracks all of my activity which can include anything from household chores to running errands to actual exercising (walking, running). It also tracks how many steps I’ve taken, how far I’ve walked in a day, and approximately how many calories I’ve burned. Lots of information – all about me!
Out of the box my band set my goal to 600 “points.” In January I bumped it up to 700 points. In February I made it 800. I’m hoping in March to knock it up to 900 and then hit 1,000 in April. That’s almost double the amount of daily activity for me in only 4 months.
Every day since I’ve had the band, and now we’re at almost 50 days, I’ve hit my goal. Not only have I hit my goal but I’ve gone over it by, on average, 20%. Having it on my wrist and being able to click it and see the little red dots run around and light up to show me how far I’ve gone really has motivated me. After I drop the kids at school, before I sit down to work, I grab my keys and go out for a quick walk. At first it was only 15 minutes, just to move the lights closer to the goal. Now I come home in the morning and head out right away for a longer 45 minute walk, trying to hit my fully day’s goal as early as possible. On weekends, I get up, get the kids their food , set them up with some cartoons and hop on the elliptical machine, aiming to hit my daily activity goal before we even really start the day.
It’s great to have this little motivator on my wrist, reminding me every day of my goal. It’s also great to have the tally of how many points, steps, miles and calories I’ve done each day. I can flip back over the past 50 days and see how well I’ve done. That motivates me not to fall short tomorrow. I know that if I miss my goal, I’ll break my streak – plus I’ll have to look back a week or a month in the future and remember that day that I didn’t meet my goal.
The band also lets me set sleep and weight goals. I haven’t quite gotten too wrapped up with those features yet. I set my sleep goal but I almost never meet it. (It’s set to 7 hours, but we all know that mommies are lucky if they get 6!) The weight piece, eh, I don’t want that number flying around all the time – but I did set it, just so that the calorie tracking piece calculates correctly.
As a working mom I have a lot of to-do lists and they’re almost always for someone else. Things to do for kids, for school, for the house, for work. My fitness band is my own personal to-do item. It’s the one thing I wear and see and use every day to keep myself accountable to myself, for myself.
I’ve never been one to meet my new year’s resolutions or to join a gym or jump on board any big fitness trends. This fitness band, however, works for me. It doesn’t take me outside my comfort zone or make me drastically change my lifestyle. I don’t have to eat different or count calories or buy any new gear. I simply wear it and let it remind me to get up and be active – every day, at my own pace, when it works for me. So far, it’s working – and I love it.
[Side note: I believe any fitness band can work for anyone. I have the Misfit Flash which is probably the least expensive one out there. It currently sells for as low as $35 on Amazon and it works in tandem with an app installed on my smart phone.]