Ode to my Fitbit

Ok, not actually an ode.

I acquired a Fitbit Charge a couple of months ago, and it has changed how I think about my personal fitness and habits. Seriously. And it doesn’t do it in a nagging ‘why haven’t you walked today’ or ‘if you don’t go to sleep until 3am you’ll feel awful tomorrow’. It’s a gentle reminder that I need to get up and walk. It raises my awareness of how much sleep and exercise effect my overall wellbeing.

I wake up and feel crappy? I can check the Fitbit and see that I only slept for 5 hours. Hmmm. Funny how regular, 7-8+ hours/night of sleep helps your energy levels and whatnot for the next few days.

I’m feeling cooped up in the house? I can check and see that I’ve only walked 2000 steps today – no wonder I’m feeling cooped up. Time to go out and walk for an hour or whatever.

And it does this without bothering me. I’m not using any of the built-in goal setting options, or setting up competitions with friends (well, maybe my wife). It’s just a little reminder that I need to be active and sleep. And that increase in awareness makes all of the difference.

I’ve walked over 10,000 steps for a majority of the past month – something I haven’t done for years. And I feel better for it. Psychologically, physically, emotionally. If you haven’t tried a Fitbit or similar tracker, I recommend it, especially if you’re the lifehacker/optimizer type.

The fact that it’s a watch on my wrist is nice too.