If You Give A Melisa A Fitness Tracker…

I started wearing a fitness tracker on Sunday.

I never had plans to get one, even though approximately 7.6 out of every 10 of my friends are using them to track their daily steps.

Then Jim, who uses one himself, ordered one (the not-technically-released-yet Garmin Vivofit 2) for me.

Note: This post is not sponsored. Jim used real money to pay for my fitness tracker; I just assumed that if I didn’t mention which one I got, somebody would ask.

I adore it. I adore my husband for many reasons too but in this case it’s because he’s a genius, and here’s why: He knows that I am extremely competitive with absolutely nobody…except for myself.

Counting steps with a fitness tracker can be dang addictive.

One of the best things about a fitness tracker is that it tells you the truth, and my truth is that as much as I adore the strength and flexibility training my Dailey Method classes provide, I need to move my body more than that. (as in, IN ADDITION TO that.) Working at home means I’m on my butt for hours a day, and not moving is too easy. It’s a breeze to tell myself that I’m going to get up at regular intervals and start some laundry or walk the dog, but the tough reality is that “I just need to finish this one thing first” happens all the time.

This tool is exactly what I need, even though I’ve driven myself nuts for five days now. Wearing a fitness tracker that generates a daily goal for steps can make someone like me do crazy things to get the steps in. CRAZY.

Crazy like:

~ Leaving my Dailey Method class on foot and walking to downtown Naperville and back.

Downtown Naperville

~ Doing laps around my house while on conference calls.

~ Dancing and side-stepping while doing tasks I used to stand still for, like brushing my teeth and peeling oranges and folding laundry.

~ Making myself use the upstairs bathroom even though there is a suitable bathroom just twelve feet from where I’m working in the family room.

~ Intentionally parking much farther away from doors than I need to.

I really should have parked farther away than this; fifty more steps would have been awesome.
I really should have parked farther away; fifty more steps would have been awesome.

~ Struggling to push the shopping cart with one hand so I can swing arm that has the fitness tracker on it, because otherwise I won’t get credit for those steps.

~ Walking to the end of the driveway to check for mail even though I’m pretty sure that J already brought it into the house.

~ Pacing in the shower. Yes, it is possible and yes, I TOLD YOU I’M DOING CRAZY STUFF.

It’s incredible how much brain power I have devoted to making myself move this week.

Then again, isn’t that the point when we’re talking about health and fitness? Being intentional about my actions is one of the best gifts of self-care I could ever provide for myself. Does it take time? Gosh, yes. Do I have the time? No…and yes. I’ve always made time for what’s important, and this is important. Besides, I’ve gotten some great fresh air this week, I’ve enjoyed the scenery around me, and I’ve felt extremely victorious each day when I blow through my goal for steps, kind of like this (Source):

I’m not setting any firm long-term goals right now. At the moment I’m happy with obsessing over hitting my daily targets and I know that my general health and well-being will improve just by doing what I’m doing.

And now it’s time to end this post so I can get moving again. I think I left my cup of tea down by the mailbox.


    • Melisa Wells

      I haven’t taken Zumba in almost a year! 🙁
      My instructor friend moved to Australia and I didn’t pick it up anywhere else because I’m at TDM 5-6 days a week. Miss you too!

  • Liz

    I do laps around the house while on conference calls, too! And then someone asked me a question and, well, I just pretend like I have a very breath-y voice on purpose. What?!? It could happen.

  • Patty

    I love my FitBit and I’m obsessed with it. I hear you on the crazy stuff. I use the restroom on another floor just for the steps. My trainer told me I have to walk at least 10 minutes every hour, not I go get a glass of water every time. It’s becoming obsessive to keep up with this new tip he told me about. Enjoy! 🙂

  • Brandie

    I’ve paced while brushing my teeth before too.
    I don’t nearly get as many steps now that we’ve moved and that’s not an option 😉

  • tracey

    Why not just push the cart with both hands and then shake your hand like a maniac later on? I have to have two hands to push, otherwise things fall and it is not a pleasant day for anyone in that store.

    I love the idea of you competing with yourself over this. It’s SO YOU.

  • Sylvia Joy

    Good for you, so glad you are doing this. I hope the weather gets better so we (Dad ) and I can start walking. Love you.
    Love Grandma W

  • Shannon

    I need to get back into wearing my fitbit. It got kind of depressing during the winter. I think steps should count double if they were taken in below zero temperatures. Maybe triple.

    • Melisa Wells

      I agree, Shannon! I think you should also get bonus steps if you pace around your living room at 9:45 p.m., just trying to reach your daily goal. (Why not go out with a bang? 🙂 )