Monday, April 21, 2014

Pedometer Challenge

Happy Easter! I hope you enjoyed the day :) We were even visited by two of the Easter Bunny's friends:
Do you guys outside the US have an Easter Bunny too? You know, a bunny that breaks into your house to leave children a basket full of chocolate and candy and hide plastic eggs around your home/yard. (Even as a kid, I thought the idea of the Easter Bunny was just plain weird. I mean, rabbits don't lay eggs. Where did the Easter Bunny get them from?!)

And now onto my post, which is completely unrelated to Easter (or at least I couldn't think of any good segues . . ).

My work is trying to encourage employees to exercise regularly by hosting a Pedometer Challenge (I say it like the Cash Cab host says "Red Light Challenge!" - as seen at about 3:17 in that video). Basically, you're given a pedometer to track your steps daily for about 5 weeks. For people who don't do much walking, but participate in other activities, we're allowed to use this chart to convert other stuff (like my yoga class) to steps. People who increase their average number of steps per day (total number of steps for the week ÷ 7) every week are entered for a chance to win a Fitbit (a fancy activity tracker). This idea reminded me of Sarah's +1 Walking Challenge back in December (which really helped me walk more this winter) so I signed up! 

Mr. G is a pedometer challenge pro because his work hosted one last summer, so he and I are having a mini competition between ourselves. He gets $50 to spend at his favorite store if he wins, or I get $50 toward a nice dinner out if I'm the champion. :)  

So we tracked our steps last week to set a baseline. He averaged steps per 6248 per day, and I averaged 6940. My goal for work next week is 8328 average daily steps. Feel free to play along and track your steps, minutes, handstands, etc. :)

I'll post an update in about two weeks! Do competitions/challenges help motivate you?

13 comments:

  1. Oh, yes we have the Easter Bunny, the great deliverer of chocolate eggs. Thank the Germans for another fun tradition - although it is not a cultural stereotype normally associated with Germans, in fact they have given us great ones for Christmas and Easter. The rabbit has had an even longer association with spring as a prolific breaker.strange that we in the Southern Hemisphere use the bunny at Easter, given it is autumn for us and in Australia the rabbit is an introduced pest, that has caused untold damage to agriculture and the environment.

    Some parents even sprinkle talc to look like rabbit footprints for further evidence of the Easter bunny's been and delivered eggs. Like you, I always thought bunnies and eggs a strange combination. But neither are Christian, more a pagan spring things.

    Well done on the pedometer challenge. I bought one ages ago. Will try to hunt it out and get a new battery. I will cheer you from the sidelines. You're already in the lead!!! What's the restaurant of choice, should you win?

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    1. Easter is definitely a fun one whether it makes sense or not :) I've never heard of the talc trick!

      I appreciate the cheering! Hopefully I can keep my lead :) The restaurant is undecided . . We're going to Ocean City, Maryland for a friend's birthday in early June, so I'm wondering if I should look for a new restaurant for us to try while we're there and use my $50 toward that?

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  2. Yes, we do have the Easter Bunny. When my son was little, the teachers at school sprinkled talc powder to look like rabbit footprints...he came home wide-eyed and awed and has never forgotton the day the Easter Bunny came to school!

    I don't own a pedometer but I just added it to my shopping list. I'd love to know what my daily steps are, no idea at all. That's a great idea that your work encourage this. I loved Sarah's challenge back in December (and did it again in Jan and Feb)...but I fell off the wagon in March. Time to get back on board!

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    1. haha, what a cool experience for your son! I'd never heard of the talc trick until you and Lucinda mentioned it.

      I fell off the walking wagon a bit in March/April too and I'm grateful that this competition has motivated me again. I'd love to see how many steps you take in a day too! This article says the average Australian walks about 9700 per day, way more than the average American at 5100 a day!

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    2. Yeah, I question that figure for Australians. I think we are increasingly sedentary. I see teenagers being driven everywhere. And we are getting fatter. For that to be the average, some people must be walking A LOT MORE. Maybe the sample was very small, and a very active group?

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    3. The article doesn't mention the sample size for the Australian study, but the American one only included 1130 people (out of a total population of 313 million), so it's possible their numbers are off. Maybe they're trying to guilt people into walking more?

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    4. Fiona - I'll mail you one of the two that are in my 'declutter' box if you assure me you've not already purchased one!

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  3. Good luck with your walking challenge! I bought a new raincoat for the rainy season and hope I can tough out walking to work in downpours. I will try my pedometer to see what a normal day adds up to!

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    1. Thanks!

      Good luck with the rain! I really enjoy walking in the rain for some reason (as long as it isn't a thunderstorm). It makes me feel relaxed :)

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  4. Back when I was working in Kmart, I had a pedometer (with a radio) and I think I wore it more cause it was a mini radio. I have no idea where it went, but the other day mum gave me two pedometers thinking I might use them. I haven't yet - and as I mentioned above, am thinking of moving them out of the house. I think I focus more on planned exercise (like walking or running) rather than walking steps. I suppose I feel like I'll be more likely to lose weight with the planned stuff.

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    1. A pedometer with a radio built in sounds like a cool idea - it'd probably make me walk longer!

      I'm glad planned exercise works for you! :) I'm going to continue my yoga class (that's really the only "planned" exercise that I do) too and convert those minutes into steps to give myself credit for that activity.

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