Episode 1. The Quirks of Step Tracking.

Do what motivates you to move.

the quirks of step tracking, fit chick health coach podcast

Here is a fun look at using step trackers to motivate you to move.  The good, the obsessive and the absurd measures we go to, to wrack up that elusive 10,000 steps.


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Episode Transcript

The quirks of step tracking- motivate you to move.


Jill Lister Martin 00:00

Welcome to the Fit Chick health coach podcast. I’m your host, Jill Lister Martin. Join me as I help women up level their lives through food and fitness, interviewing experts deep diving into my own adventures and finding a balance between motherhood life, a sweet tooth for licorice and wine. Because let’s face it, life is messy and sometimes a little bit overwhelming. FitChick is about finding that balance and inspiring women by giving them the tools to take control of their own health and feel amazing. Let’s get started. Hello, and welcome to the Fit chick health coach Podcast. I am so excited that you’re here today.



For a fun one, I thought I would talk about step tracking and I know a lot of us are feeling a little bit stuck in isolation at the moment. But fortunately, here in New Zealand, we’ve just got back to level two, we’ve been able to go out and exercise which the whole time which has been a savior, both mentally just as much physically. Now, I’m not saying that you have to track your steps, what is important is to do what motivates you to move and step trackers have definitely motivated me to move. I’m a pretty active person anyway. But some days particularly a Lazy Sunday, I can absolutely sit around at home and not get any steps in on the board.



On the other hand, on a normal weekday morning, I can usually get around 2000 steps up before I leave the house and that’s just running in and out to the car or going to the clothesline or  just your normal running around morning things and the thing is, I’m a little bit self-competitive and I know how many steps I’ve done, and I need to hit my 10,000-step goal minimum and I’ve won a Fit bit in the past for quite a few years actually and I know I can get into that crazy step lady mode and I’m an all-in kind of person and I’m one of those people who can get addicted to tracking my steps and there are certainly worse addictions.



But I have gone through times where I found myself pacing a 10-meter-long hallway to get an extra 7000 steps in before I go to bed, mind you I had the door shut, so nobody would know that I was a crazy lady walking up and down the hallway and it was like a guilty obsession. Another slightly embarrassing thing to admit that I’ve also done is that I know that a fast way to get lots of steps up is to courage you and it’s a ballet step where you do lots of little steps to glide across the floor. Imagine ballerina in a white tutu floating across Swan Lake style. So, if anybody our neighbors ever looked in the window late at night and saw me gliding around the house, that was why and I always had the same style of Fitbit, Fitbit one, which is good, because I usually quite fit it into my bra just fit to achieve. But that has its own quirks.



I’ve been busted on many occasions checking out my boobs, which is in fact just me checking the time on my Fit bit, all the steps and one of the downsides to wearing it on my clothing is I have actually put it through the washing machine a few times, which no surprises they don’t like. I think only my first Fit bit was brand new and because they discontinued the Fit bit when I couldn’t find another one anyway that I didn’t have to wear like a watch and it was fine in the beginning because I could find them on eBay and eventually Facebook groups and things. But it got to the point that they’ve all gone through the wash or something or just nobody was selling them anymore because despite looking I could not find one page. It was a bit like the black market and even they’re still around half the retail prices after they’ve been discontinued and I guess it was just a matter of supply and demand.



I obviously was not the only person who wanted to wear a clip-on step tracker and I paid tracker freight for about a year and a half when the yearning to start tracking kicked in again. We went away on holidays over Christmas and we’re doing about 15 to 25,000 steps a day and I knew because my husband was tracking on his phone and he told me how many we’ve done and we came home, he came home a week before I did so I installed an app to track steps on my phone too and then I got sucked into joining the January challenge for that app and I didn’t even know how to check into the app, but it just automatically took the numbers off my phone and people would like my daily results and, but it will just pop up as notifications and I didn’t even know how to like anyone else because I didn’t know how to actually work it.



Anyway, I told myself I just try and keep up the step tracking for January while I was away that I still had another half a month before I was going to be back in the gym and even in my 36 hours of (Inaudible) at home I made sure that I did a lap to the airport to get my 10,000 steps up and then I arrived back in New Zealand on the 11th of January feeling chuffed that I kept going even when I had been confined into a plane for goodness knows how many hours in the last day and a half that it took me to get back and that’s when it happened. I left Florida on the ninth of January, I spent 36 hours in transit and Wright arrived back on the 11th of January in New Zealand. Can you guess what happened? The deadline happened and I lost today and my phone was to let me know that yesterday, I got zero steps. No, I did not and in fact, I’ve been walking three to five thousand steps every time I got off the plane moving in between terminals, which is actually a really great way to rack up steps and I’d never use the elevators, but I take the stairs. So, I climbed all the stairs. I got seriously robbed.



Anyway, I knew my phone tracking steps wasn’t an ideal solution once I got home, because I don’t have my phone on me when I work out or when I teach Zumba classes and Zumba classes are about five and a half thousand steps. Or I also teach strong nation, that point. I haven’t actually tracked my steps. But it is a lot of steps too and it had been so long since I’ve had a track up and now that all or nothing side to me kicked in and I thought Screw it, I’m going to start investigating to buy another Fitbit or other one tracker option. Once again, no joy, they all just looks like watches. Then my fabulous husband surprised me with a new Fit bit and I was surprised because he’d been researching and I had been talking about getting another Fitbit after our holidays. The problem was I don’t actually like wearing watches or anything on my wrists.



And the clip-on Fit bit that I had previously was discontinued and I had actually been researching myself and couldn’t find replacement. Don’t judge me but I have the thing about wearing things about around my wrist, I feel that they look quite chunky on me and quietly I also used to be found it a little bit of noxious when people would wear them as a badge of honor, like look at me. I’m an exerciser and I’m not sure where that weird thought came from, probably the same place where people talking about dieting and being on diets made me want to crawl under a rock and hide, which I know is about me and my own issues, which are not a thing anymore. But that’s just where I was and then one Thursday night, probably after a year and a half of not tracking my husband gets home from work and presents me with my new Fit bit, the Fit bit inspire and he had also been researching and discovered that you could get a clip for the Inspire, which you can attach you close. It took a couple of weeks for the clip to arrive.



So, I did try wearing it as a watch. In the meantime, I would still take it off when I sat down sometimes just to let my wrist breathe and it was pretty warm at the time so, I was getting a bit sweaty. But I’m glad that I did try it as a watch. I’m glad to have a tracker again. Why do we get the idea that we need to do 10,000 steps from now 10,000 steps a day has become such a gold standard for many people that it’s sold so many step counting devices and inspired so many offers competitions. But the origins of the number go back to 1965 when a Japanese company made a device and I’m gonna say this wrong, I’m really sorry before I even say it. It’s called the manpo-kei, which translates to 10,000 steps meter.



So, really the 10,000 steps was literally a marketing tool, which has obviously survived because that’s just a number that we all know and I surveyed the amazing ladies in my FitChick health coach community about step tracking, which you should join, by the way, find us at the Fit Chick health coach community on Facebook and most people in that survey are talking about that they do over that magic 10,000 steps, though, of course, it’s a bit harder at the moment during isolation for some and depending on what the rules and regulations are, where you live. But one member Jenny said that she allowed that preset steps on her Fitbit because she never hit it, which is absolutely okay.



It’s about being aware of how much activity you’re actually doing. How much you’ve actually moved, and if your goal is about 5000 steps, maybe you’d like to do more and push yourself 6000 and build it up. But it’s more about knowing if you’ve only managed to do 2000 steps, maybe you should throw in some sneakers and go for a walk to get to your own minimum number and as a part of the Fit Chick health coach formula, we talk about setting your own minimum requirements. It’s not about what everybody else’s number is, set your minimum number of steps you think you should do and aim for it.



Some of the ways the ladies in the community have racked up extra steps just to hit their goals include doing laps around the table, and like networks. Getting involved in step challenges, which we sometimes do in the FitChick community. Somebody admitted to getting out of bed just before the deadline to get the steps in to beat her opponent, which I happen to find hilarious and the competitiveness dance video games and like I said, Zumba classes are a great way to get about five and a half thousand steps, walking the dog running up and down the stairs to make up the numbers. Do you track your steps? Take a screenshot and tag FitChick health coach on Instagram and let me know or share it in our Fit Chick health coach community and just let me know if you get as competitive or as addicted to step tracking as I do. Like I said step tracking is entirely optional but just do what motivates you to move.



Have a fabulous week and I’ll talk to you all again next week on the Fit Chick health coach podcast. Hey, if you enjoyed listening to this podcast, you have to come and check out reboot, reset raw, reboot your systems reset where you see yourself in 12 months’ time and roll out with the confidence in the new you. It’s my 90-day coaching program where we will take all this material and find the best way to make it work for your life. Plus, a little bit of accountability and support along the way. Join me over at the FitChickhealthcoach.com/join and if you’d like to hear more, please let me know by sharing and leaving a review. I’ll talk to you soon.