I'm talking about my FitBit Blaze.
Blanca. I will call her Blanca. (You can see her on my left arm below).
Blanca is my reminder to not be a slug outside of the gym. When I am not wearing Blanca, honestly, I am a lazy bum. I avoid excess trips up the stairs, I spend less time outside with the pups, I spend less time cleaning the house, less time cooking, and generally, less time running errands and completing important tasks. I tell people I am the laziest CrossFitter ever, I am not kidding when I say that.
Blanca keeps me honest. I was sedentary before I started wearing a FitBit. And I really didn't know it. I thought I was always on the go, go, go. But feeling stressed and actual activity are not the same thing. Go figure.
The first thing I did was purchase a treadmill desk. No more sitting for a few hours here and a few hours there catching up on emails. When I am working these days, I'm walking. She made me realize that my morning activity of sitting and drinking my coffee while browsing Facebook was a lame way to start the day. Now I don't open Facebook until at least lunchtime (it's hard when you run a business via social media) & I take my coffee outside and enjoy the morning on our property with our dogs.
Sitting is no bueno. Have you even read Deskbound, bro?
Not only does Blanca remind me to move more (park farther away from the grocery store entrance, park farther away from the restaurant), she keeps track of my nightly sleeping habits. I am a dork for data, I didn't know it before though. Before Blanca, I went to bed when I wanted and woke up when I wanted. Some nights I'd stay up way too late and then wake up 2 hours later and suffer through terrible insomnia. My sleep was all over, and I never got what I needed. It's crazy, because I know how important sleep is. But, it wasn't until I saw my pattern and saw my sleep graph from FitBit, that I knew I needed a change. Less TV, less blue light, less caffeine, a properly timed nighttime snack, more magnesium, and a routine sleep schedule - I sleep like a baby and it's very consistent. 10am bedtime, 7-8a wakeup and an uninterrupted night of sleep.
I use Blanca in the gym when I'm training. This isn't the reason I bought her though, it's just an added feature. I love the Blaze because it comes with different exercise modes, which in turn provides more accuracy. When I start warming up, I put it in Circuit Training mode, and keep it there until I'm done for the day and cooling down. (I move it higher on my arm, about 2 inches above my wrist, for the most accurate heart rate monitoring). I don't need exact tracking with training though - I know I'm working hard. I more love her more for the 22 hours I'm not in the gym - the bulk of my life. I know I'm active and working hard when I'm fitnessing, I don't need an activity tracker for that. What I do need to know is what I'm doing with the other hours of my day. How am I recovering? How am I sleeping? What's my average heart rate at rest, etc.
On Monday, my husband and I took our nephews to Hersheypark for the day. It might have gotten a little damp at the water park ... When I woke up Tuesday morning, it wasn't working. Oopsies. I contemplated purchasing a new one. Blanca wasn't cheap. Did I want to drop another $200 on a new one? (By the way, they new make waterproof versions).
It turns out, YES. A huge, resounding yes. After the last few days of not wearing Blanca, I have noticed my laziness sinking to new depths. It even affected me in the gym! I was way more motivated to get home and shower than I was to do any extra work or an optional conditioning session. Blanca ALWAYS motivated me to do more.
She's like that friend that reminds you without being all in your face: YOU CAN DO BETTER.
Yeah, it might just be a watch to some people, but to me, Blanca effectively changed me for the better. She made me more aware, and allowed me to change a few things in my day to day that really added up to big change.
"Awareness is like the sun. When it shines on things, they are transformed."
If you're looking for a FitBit of your own, this is the one I recommend. If you already have one, add me as a friend on the app (firstname.lastname@example.org). I do Workweek Hustle's regularly, and I'm always looking for new friends to keep me moving.