Initially, I thought it was a rather curious gift to give me – I’m not an athlete or a fitness fanatic. But that curiosity got the better of me and for the past 2 weeks I’ve been wearing it on my wrist, synching it with my computer, and tracking my physical activity. Here’s my confession… I’ve been seduced!
After the initial set up, the first thing required of me was to upload my essential data – height, weight, gender and age. I was pleased that my BMI calculation was 23.9 but it did place me at the high end of normal.
The tracker then set me a goal for the number of steps per day, 10,000. It also asked me to set my own goals and I decided that losing 7kgs by June would have a positive impact on my high-end-of-normal BMI.
On day 1, I obsessively checked my wrist for every step of progress. I went for walks just to make the LED numbers grow and glow. I found myself wishing I had set the tracker up a day earlier so that my long walk on the beach that morning might have counted. What madness is this thinking??
2 weeks later I seem to have established a routine: 3000 steps before breakfast (walking the dog); incidental exercise during the day; then make up the difference between the day’s count and the 10,000 steps goal before dinner. I find it heartening to achieve the goal every day.
As a successful business-person my days are certainly not bereft of goal striving or achievement but it seems the uncomplicatedness of the 10,000 step goal and the immediacy of the external feedback fuel the discipline needed for a successful routine.
After only 14 days my confidence for the goal (probably buoyed by the additional endorphins) is so high that I’m booked to walk west to east across England in September. Yep, you’ve read right! My tracker and I are walking across England! What madness is this action??
The wrist-tracker has now taken the place of the watch I habitually wore for many years, long after my smartphone rendered it un-useful to me. Its mere presence and the heightened awareness of my inactivity, drives my effort to get up and move about more.
So it seems I’m hooked, not just to my tracker, but also to the beneficial wellness outcomes predicted to come from my new habit over time:
- The boost to energy levels
- The improved relaxation and clearer thinking
- The sense of achievement and satisfaction
- The improved confidence and mood
- The overall physical health improvements.
As plain and unobtrusive as it is, my tracker is a great device that;
- helps me set activity goals;
- helps me check my progress;
- motivates me to keep going;
- it doesn’t pay attention to my excuses;
- it doesn’t judge me; and
- it’s there when I need it
The tracker, I now affectionately call “Coach”.