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My New Toy

14 Jul


I’ve been obsessing about the FitBit for weeks, as I often do with things right before I find a way to purchase them. Just as I was starting to believe I couldn’t live one more minute without knowing precisely how many calories I’m burning at any given moment, it arrived!

It’s cute! It’s pink! It spells my name correctly! I’m in love.


The arrival was Thursday afternoon. Friday morning at 8:26 I was front and center in spin class at the Y, ready to burn an excessive number of calories and finally know for sure what that number was. Not knowing exactly how many calories I burn during spin frustrates me. Calorie estimators will give you anything from 500 to 1000 depending on your level of intensity. “Vigorous” versus “highly vigorous” can mean a difference of hundreds and hundreds of calories. How the heck do I know?! Yes, there are times in spin where the vigorous is so high I’m sure I’m going to realize my great fear of falling off the bike while my feet stay attached to the pedal straps. There are also times (many) where I choose to completely ignore the instructor’s suggestion to add tension in favor of a few minutes to catch my breath.

So Friday morning I was so ready to put an end to the mystery. I rode with all I had, and even participated in (most of) the tension increases. I resisted checking my FitBit until the end of stretching. Fully expecting, knowing, I reached a burn of at least 700 calories. The grand total?

208 calories.

Shock. Betrayal. Adorable little gadget of lies!

208! Impossible. I burn 208 just getting myself and the kids ready and to the gym!

After a quick conversation with the instructor and confirming my rage is well placed, she suggests maybe I’m wearing my FitBit in the wrong place for cycling and it’s just not picking up my pedal strokes. I had it clipped on the waistband of my shorts. Had to be.

Further research at home reveals cycling is one of FitBit’s least accurate activities when it comes to capturing calories burned. Great. I did read in the online community section that a few users had good luck clipping it to their sock, so I’ll try that next time.

Ok, so even though I still don’t know exactly how many calories spin class burns me, I’ve made peace with FitBit and have really enjoyed its benefits. I have made a conscious effort to reach 10,000 steps in a day (though I’ve yet to), and I like seeing how a few minutes running around the house playing with the kids translates into calories burned. I absolutely love the sleep tracker. Every morning it tells me how long it took me to fall asleep, the efficiency of my sleep, and how many times (and when) I woke. Though when I woke up this morning my readout said I had taken 52 steps since midnight. A tad alarming. Where did I go? I’m definitely a crazy psycho sleep talker, but sleep walking? A whole new thing. At least I’m getting added exercise, I guess.

I imagine I’ll learn tons more about my new toy as I continue to use it. In the meantime, let’s hope I don’t walk out the front door in my sleep.


my quest to establish the new "me"

The Good Greatsby

Paul Johnson's comedy blog: I didn't get into comedy to be rich or famous. All I've ever wanted was to be somebody rich and famous.

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