Wednesday, July 25, 2012

My Life with Pedometers

My name is Holly and I am addicted to pedometers.

Admitting you have a problem is the first step right? I started wearing a pedometer daily over 10 years ago. I first used it as a way to get some exercise. This was before I was running. I would strive to get the magic 10,000 steps a day that everyone said you needed to stay healthy.

I started off with a high tech version called the Sportbrain. This was a really cool little pedometer. The first version didn’t even have a display. You would have to put the “egg” into a port, which would then dial up (yes dial up) the company and download the steps to the site.  It was a great tool.  For no extra fee they would run challenges that you registered for. Get a certain number of steps during the time period and you automatically get the prize. It was very motivating for me and I loved it. Eventually they came out with a unit that had a display so you could see your progress without having to plug it in. That model also had a USB upload. Unfortunately Sportbrain’s service started going downhill and they stopped doing the challenges so I moved on.

I used a basic Omron pedometer for a few years and it was great. They are low cost and accurate, but no bells and whistles.  I liked the extra feedback that the Sportbrain gave over the Omron.

Then along came the Fitbit! I was so excited when I heard about this product. It took awhile for it to come to the market and I was one of the early adopters. It is very small and can be worn on the belt/bra or in your pocket. Data uploads wirelessly whenever you are close to your computer that has the base charging station attached to it.

The website has a lot of information and feedback and I loved it. Unfortunately my first one lasted a month before the display died. Fitbit sent me a replacement. The next one lasted about a year and again they replaced it. The last one the plastic cover came off and I had to superglue it back together. These are not inexpensive: $100. I had enough and moved on once again.

My latest love is the Striiv.  This is also about $100. No monthly fees and you can see your data online, but currently only your cumulative steps, the current day and previous day. I am hoping that eventually you will be able to go back and see older daily data.

The cool thing is that as you step you are accumulating points towards donations. To date I have donated 14 days of water for one child, 78 polio vaccinations and 31 parking spot sizes of Rainforest. Pretty cool!

It also has an environment creation/management game called Myland. The more you step the more you can buy in the game. It will also give you pop up challenges throughout the day. Such as go climb 15 steps. Or get 10 more minutes of activity. Very motivating.

I have had the Striiv since April and it still works perfectly. It has been through a few marathons, plus lots of sweaty workouts, and it is still going strong.

I highly recommend the Striiv, or just wearing a pedometer in general, to get some extra motivation throughout your day.

All images sourced from the Internet.

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