January is the year that most gyms see their memberships skyrocket. Getting in shape, losing weight and fitting back into a favorite pair of jeans from a few years ago are probably the top few goals for most people who set goals. A few weeks into the new year and a vast majority of people stop going to the gym. In fact, going by statistics, 80% of the New Years Resolutions crowd drops off by the second week of February. Meaning only 20% remain, and the rate of sign-ups tapers off by February. I did not partake in joining a gym this year. Instead, I received a Fitbit and have gotten more out of it than I would have with a gym membership.
There are many reasons why I feel like the Fitbit has done more for me than the gym. One of those reasons is that it holds me accountable. I can set certain goals and if I slack off one day, it will literally send a notification to my phone to get moving. It keeps up with all the steps I’ve taken, how many miles I’ve walked, and just how far from my goal I am. So far this year, I have walked over 100,000 steps which roughly equal around 51 one mile, give or take. That only accounts for the days that I have worn it. My husband has seen my frantically run around the house just to reach my daily goal before bed.
Another aspect that Fitbit helps me with that a gym wouldn’t is that I can log my calories on my phone. It holds me accountable for what I eat. Instead of being told by a trainer or gym partner what I can and cannot eat, I can physically see what I can and cannot eat. The Fitbit has a section where you can even scan the barcode on the food you are eating and log it into your daily food intake. From there you can see how many calories you have eaten and how many calories you have burned.
Much like setting a goal for how many steps you take, you can also set a goal for losing weight based off calories. It gives you four goals to choose from. Easier means a -250 calorie deficit . Medium is a -500 calorie deficit. Kinda Hard is the -750 calorie deficit. And Harder is the -1,000 calorie deficit. It is true that you are constantly burning calories, but being able to see the amount of calories burned in a thirty minute walk around your neighborhood will blow your mind. By simply walking three times a week and watching my calories, I have lost 9 pounds in three weeks.
The last aspect, which I absolutely love, is the friends option. You can add your friends who have fitbit, and have a little healthy competition. I participated in my first “Weekend Warrior” challenge this past weekend with a lot of people I don’t personally know, but with a mutual friend of them. It was fun to see all these people, from different parts of the country, walk it out on the weekend! Some of these ladies were in the upper 50,000 steps in two days, where some of us were much lower. When I got close to the person in front me on steps, I would walk back and forth for a few seconds just to beat them. It seems petty, but hey, I placed in the top five.
While it may not give me perfect abs and the ideal beach body that some machines in the gym will, Fitbit has helped me change my everyday life for the better. I am achieving my goals almost every day. In fact, since the first of the year, I have only slacked off two days. I'm eating less calories and burning more. Getting in shape can be as simple as putting a device on your wrist and just becoming aware. It’s a really simple solution to keep people accountable. And I really doubt that I’ll be putting the Fitbit down by the second week of February.