Day #7: How do you get your 10,000 in?

My Fitbit report arrived yesterday. It told me I logged 61,585 steps last week. Not bad considering I didn’t get serious until Nov. 11 – my “Day #1.”

Since I committed to using my Fitbit to the fullest, I am determined to get my 10,000 steps in each day – even if that means (and it has meant) walking in the dark under a blanket of stars.

Last night, I felt a little achy. The last thing I wanted to do was get my remaining 2,500 steps in. But I know myself well enough to know if I don’t do it one day, I likely won’t do it the next. It’s true for me with my writing goals. It’s been true for me with most any goal.

I’m determined. And it helps to know there are a few of you out there who are with me on this journey – or who have gone before me (like Tina and Mary) and demonstrated that consistent effort really does lead to great things.

My friend Lisa strapped her Fitbit on to join me on this activity tracker quest. This morning she posted on Facebook that she “sucks” at getting her 10,000 steps in. It was easy when she was an avid jogger, but now that she’s not, it’s challenging.

“Even though I instinctively knew I was sucking, this little bit of hardware has proven it and has pushed me to find ways to get moving more, maybe not 10,000 steps yet but to actually MOVE,” Lisa wrote.

I don’t want her to beat up on herself – gosh that’s not what this is about (I’m talking to myself here, too). These activity trackers simply prove that we’re not moving as much as we think we’re moving.

Lisa and I both work sedentary jobs. We’re at our computers all day long. I’ve learned from my recent chiropractic visits what a number that’s doing on my body. Of course that wasn’t a news flash: I had read (and mostly ignored) articles like the one last year in The New York Times that suggest sitting is the new smoking. The article cites studies that suggest that sitting less can slow the aging process – and that standing up, even if we’re just standing still, can be beneficial to our health.

I love this animated explanation about the hazards of sitting too much.

To make sure she gets up and moves, Lisa installed an app called Stand Up! by Raised Square on her iphone. When it goes off, it dings and flashes the message, “Get Up and Move! We want you to live longer!”

“The app is pretty cool because what happens is that I get involved in my work and forget to move,” Lisa said.

Based on her recommendation, I installed the app immediately. It’s set to go off in about a half hour. I’ll let you know what I think.

Recently, Today Health & Wellness shared a story that the 10K-a-day goal for fitness is largely a myth. The article reminds us that exercise alone isn’t going to make us fit or lose weight – that it’s a combination of decreasing caloric consumption and increasing caloric expenditure.

In other words, eat less and move more.

I think that’s the beauty of these activity trackers – at least the way I’m using mine. I can log what I eat – and drink – while it keeps track of my steps. I don’t know it yet – I don’t weigh in until tomorrow – if following this formula actually works… if using my Fitbit actually works.

But what I do know without even knowing the number on the scale is I feel better – stronger, clearer headed, leaner – and it’s only been seven days.

Fitbit has gotten me off my butt. It’s gotten me moving. That has to help.

It is helping.

How do you get your 10,000 steps in? Let me know. And if your activity/fitness tracker is helping you to transform your body – and life, I’d love to share your story in my blog series #TrackerTales. Let me know if you’re interested.

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Day #7: How do you get your 10,000 in?
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