Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Tracking your steps: Surprising numbers

Hello My Lovelies and Gents,

Have you ever said "Oh I probably walked about 5 miles today"?  Sometimes there is a misconception about just how much you walk during the day. 

I know I get a lot of mileage on my walks and runs. It's my daily movements that aren't so hot. There are even less excuses now that I'm not sitting at a desk all day.  Although I try to make it a little more active every day. I park further away. I take the stairs when I can. I try to get out for a little walk every day. If I am watching TV I try to get up on commercials and move around.

Many times over the years I have considered wearing my pedometer and seeing how my day is. I have had a couple of pedometers over the years, but I never got in the habit of using them. The one I use for my runs is on my ipod so I would get nervous about using that all over. I might not notice if I lose it if I am not listening to music on it. So many times I packed the pedometers for big trips though. I wanted to use it in Disney World and at the zoo, but I forgot to put it on.

Before I left my former company they gave me a Fitbit as a reward for qualifying for a Health drawing. Setting it up has been on my To Do list forever. And last night I finally did.

So what is a Fitbit?  It's a fitness tracker that you wear and then it sync's up with your computer. I wasn't sure how it would work, but so far it has. You wear a bracelet all day long. You set it to the 'sleep' mode when it's time. It's waterproof so you wear it in the shower. The only time you take it off is to charge it about every 5 days. It tracks your sleep, your steps, your activity level, and your calories burned. You set your goals and it tracks your progress. The box came with two bracelets. I'm happy to report that I am wearing the Small :-)

The default goal is 10,000 steps a day. That's about 5 miles. It's a good healthy number. It's what we should all strive for every day.

Today is either a really good day for me to start tracking or a very bad day. Last night I went for a run with my cousin. We didn't go to the lake as I had planned. Instead we ran from his place to over by the mall and then back. There was no running trail. We ran on the concrete sidewalks for 3 miles. This is my big NO NO. No running on concrete. It is the WORST surface for your knees. So for me a 3 mile run is a short run, but a 3 mile run on concrete is like a 10 mile run on the treadmill on my knees.

While I'm here I should tell you about the run. It was fun. I don't usually run well with others. It's very hard for me to find a good pace with someone else. I have talked about Cousin Randy before. He came to my first Half Marathon and I was there for his first one. We have been very supportive of each other, but in all of this time we have only ever run together one other time and that was more of a walk around the lake. I wasn't sure if I could hold pace with him, but we did really well together.

The only real problems were that he lives in a very busy area near lots of shopping centers and major highways. Crossing intersections were were a little tricky. Although they were nothing compared to crossing exit ramps. We joked that it was a death run. Nothing gets you moving like speeding cars.  The irony is that the Former Fat Girl used to joke that she ran "only when chased.".

Towards the end of our run we stopped at Panera for a smoothie. We were sweaty nasty and I really felt bad for the other customers. We got Superfruit power smoothies. It was very yummy.  It was great run though. We had a lot of fun. And when I got home there was a lot of ice.

So today needed to be a light day. No runs.  So maybe it it's the perfect day to track with the Fitbit.

Today I ran out for a couple of hours to drop off donations and pick up a scale. I made it home just in time for the giant storm to hit. So it was a perfect afternoon for me to get some work done on the computer. Not exactly great Fitbit material. So I put on the TV and during every commercial I got up and walked around. Sometimes I actually got up to do things and sometimes I got up just to walk continuously. I decided to track my steps for one hour of commercial breaks. It's kind of disappointing.  I only got 400 steps. That's barely a dent in the 10,000. Although, since I am well aware of how much you have to do to get 10,000 steps it really wasn't that surprising.

I have been a little obsessive about checking my progress, but that really is a great motivator. So get out there and invest in a pedometer. I think you'll be surprised with the results.

Have a Blessed Evening

****Please note****

If you feel like you are alone on your journey and you just need some encouragement I am here for you! Shoot me an email and I will do my best to check in on you or give you the words of support you need several times a week. The journey is so much easier if you have support.


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