The majority of us have, at one time or another, experienced the rewarding perks of pursuing a fitness-related goal with a friend. Whether it’s for that sense of pride or extra dose of encouragement, I know I’m willing to push a little harder if someone is with me. Trouble is, it’s not always convenient to meet up with a buddy or family member to exercise when you have a busy schedule to keep up with. However, with wearables like Fitbit activity trackers, technology is making it easier to stay connected, set goals, and encourage the ones we love to stay on track with healthy habits.
The following are a few ideas on how to create some fun Fitbit competition with your friends and family.
Turn a dry-erase board into a spot to brag on the weekly winners. It can be hard to keep motivation going over a long time span. By making shorter goals, you may find it easier to keep up the good work.
Progress can take many forms. You could have a weekly winner for “Most Steps,” “Most Calories Burned,” “Workout Warrior” for most workouts in a week, or even a “Best Sleeper” award since the Fitbit can track that too. By having a few different categories, there are more chances for everyone to shine. (Homemade trophies passed around to the weekly leaders are a fun touch too.)
Research has shown that people are more likely to exercise when they pair, or “bundle,” their physical activity with something they enjoy. For instance, download an exciting audiobook but only listen to it while you take a walk. Or, if you’re the type to more likely get hooked on a TV show, do chair squats or push-ups during commercials. You may find your weekly numbers improving without having to sacrifice time for entertainment.
Initiating and maintaining good eating and workout habits can certainly be a challenge. Activity trackers are an excellent, easy-to-use tool to help your family establish new routines and take steps toward achieving a healthier lifestyle. Get creative laying the groundwork for your weekly challenge and, most importantly, be sure to have fun along the way.