Monday, January 11, 2016

Fitbit Pick Up Stix

I have been considering joining a gym.  When I think about hiking the Grand Canyon - going down, down down one day and up,up up the next day, I feel nervous for my knees.  I remember a physical therapist telling me once that if people would keep their quads strong, there would be less knee injuries.  A gym would have plenty of machines for strengthening quads.  In other words, I have a fairly specific reason for considering a gym this year.

I've explained my thoughts to my dad.  His comeback to that has been to suggest that picking up sticks is good exercise.  I suspect he thinks my walking for hours is somewhat a waste of time, too.  He's far more practical than his eldest daughter.

Today, I decided to give Dad's advice a whirl.  Instead of my normal afternoon walk, I picked up sticks. I purposely made it rather inconvenient. The emphasis was on exercise, not efficiency.  I picked up a few sticks at a time, only carrying them in my non-Fitbit hand. My Fitbit arm swung free because, of course, I wanted every step to be counted in order to make my daily goal.  I hauled sticks to the truck (which wasn't close) a few at a time.  I walked back and forth, back and forth, over and over and over.

I have enough sticks and branches around the property to fill this truck at least 50 times.

I monitored my steps just for fun.  I averaged 893 steps every 10 minutes.  There were times when I stopped to break branches into smaller pieces.  There were times when I stopped to cut low hanging branches.  Had I only been retrieving, my step count average might have been higher.

I used to love this game!
My new Pick Up Stix game is very different.

The "Pick Up Stix" step count is not as high as straight walking, but I have to admit, I really like that I accomplished something while earning my steps.  Dad, this is not the answer to strengthening my quads for my Canyon hike, but I will definitely try to accomplish something a little more often while I earn my Fitbit steps.

I need to point out, too, that had I not had the Fitbit, I would not have picked up so many sticks in one go.  The Fitbit definitely motivated me to keep going.  I'm a big fan of this little gadget!

Those steps really add up!

Side Note (but probably only interesting to those who are Fitbit obsessed) - When I came in, I decided to experiment with vacuuming.  My Fitbit vacuuming counts were annoying.  After ten minutes of vacuuming, I earned only 70 steps.  I took more steps than that!  I thought maybe I'd made a mistake.  I vacuumed a room and rechecked.  Ten steps.  I promise, I did a good job vacuuming and it definitely took more than ten steps.  While vacuuming, my fitbit hand is rather still.  I use it to hold the vacuum cord out of the way.  I switched the Fitbit to my right hand and the numbers were higher.  They may have been a little too high from all the back and forth movement, but I figure the Fitbit owed me!  The next time I vacuum, I'll do some more experimenting.


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