Everything is tickety-boo

Here is a list of the good things in my week, that make me realize that everything is tickety-boo:

 -  I saw and heard Bryn Terfel last Sunday at the Green Music Center.      He sang so beautifully, it made me cry.
-  Back singing evensong at Grace cathedral, San Francisco this afternoon (that's where the stained glass window photo is from)
-  The lovely fall weather
-  Seeing a pileated woodpecker a few days in a row near our home
-  Getting back into my walking routine
-  Getting a new pedometer to accompany the above
-  Two good nutrition and cooking classes
-  Creating a new recipe and loving it
-  Good discussion at book club
-  Enjoying blue sweet potatoes!
-  Saw Macbeth from the National Theater live with Kenneth Branagh
-  Loved "Captain Philips" with Tom Hanks - very gripping, but I just wanted to give him a hug.

Hope you had a good one too.

10,000 Steps

I've been doing 10,000 steps now for just over a year!  If you don't know, 10,000 steps is a walking program where your goal is to walk 10,000 steps every day.

Just about every day, I put on my fitbit to measure the number of steps I take, and get out there walking.

About 1/3 of the year in, I decided to change my goal from 10,000 steps a day to 70,000 steps a week.  I found that some days I just didn't have the time for 10,000 steps, yet could easily make up a few thousand on another day that week.  By changing to a weekly goal, I didn't feel bad when I didn't reach my daily goal, and in fact was motivated to make sure I kept up the weekly goal.

I've probably only forgotten to put on my fitbit about 7 times in the whole 12 - 13 months!  It has just become a habit.

I'm not as fanatical about it all now, but part of that is because I just generally walk more than I used to, so reaching 10,000 isn't so difficult.

You're never to young to start!!..and it helps if you stick out your tongue :-D

For example, on Christmas day, it was a horrid wet day but we spent most of the morning talking on the phone to our family in England.  As I spoke on the phone, I walked constantly around the house.  By the time I got off the phone and we had spoken to everyone, I'd walked more than 8,500 steps!

So I encourage you to give it a try.  If you are new to exercise or walking, start with just measuring on a pedometer how many steps you normally take, and then set your goal at a little higher than that that seems like a stretch.  After you reach that goal, stretch yourself further and set a harder target and continue in this fashion.

I think it's time for me to have a new goal......

10,000 steps update

In January, I reported on my 10,000 steps goal - i.e. that I committed to walking 10,000 steps every day.  I thought I'd update you on my progress.

I still wear my fitbit everyday to count my steps (and other things) and now I focus on a goal of 70,000 steps a week. I've found that some days I just couldn't get 10,000 steps in with other time constraints, so instead I have a weekly 70,000 goal so my daily average is 10,000.

I therefore allow myself a "day off" - during which I generally walk 7,000 steps, and then I make up the difference during the other days of the week.  It was my dad's idea to take a "day off" each week. I bought my parents a fitbit and they have upped their walking too since they started using it.  My dad's goal is 5,000 steps a day - and last week, one day he walked more than 16,000 steps so got his "15,000 step" badge!  He likes to take Sunday's off as a day of rest!

I always achieve more than my weekly goal...and am thinking maybe I'll up it sometime soon.

My walks have really become a habit that I look forward to. I've taken to listening to audiobooks on most of my walks.  They make the time past quickly and as they are mostly educational books, I feel I am learning something, while also getting some exercise.  But some days, I just enjoy the peace and quiet and watch the birds, deer, rabbits, and squirrels along the way.

Did you start something at the beginning of year to benefit your health and are still doing?  Doesn't it feel good?

(So far today I've done 16,137 steps and the day isn't over yet.....)



I love my Fitbit.

I bought it late last year.  I'd been wearing a pedometer for quite a few months and found it was quite motivating for me, encouraging me to walk a certain number of steps a day.  But then I heard about Fitbit!  And started my 10,000 steps a day goal.

If you have a pedometer, you don't NEED a FitBit - but I'm so glad I have one!

It's tiny and so secures to your clothing much easier than a pedometer.  For women, the ideal place is to clip it to the center of your bra....but it's also suitable for pockets, belts, waistbands etc.

Like a pedometer, it counts your steps but it does more.  We'd often said, as we walked up steep hills  "why don't I get credit for the uphill, extra effort bits?" - well Fitbit credits you by noting the changes in elevation as you walk.  It monitors it as "floors climbed" so you get a number each day and can set a 'floors climbed' goal too.  All this you can read on the small device display, but what I really like about it is that it wirelessly downloads/syncs your data to your computer or mobile phone.

In addition to walking, you can record your food intake online, your daily weight, your own goals, your water intake, and the other feature I like about it is that it records your sleep.  At night-time, you wear the Fitbit in a wrist band and it monitors your sleep as in how long it takes for you to get to sleep, how often you wake up and for how long, total time asleep, etc etc.  Some nights when I felt that I'd been awake for ages, the Fitbit showed me that actually I had dozed on and off and still got plenty of hours of sleep.

Oh, and of course there are "community" options with Fitbit that I haven't explored - for example you can link with other users who are your friends and see how they are doing and set goals together and the such.

The part I like best is that, as I am often on my computer each day, I am constantly reminded of my goal to walk 10,000 steps every day. If you read back to my blog post about setting goals, you'll see one of my points was about writing down your goals and having them somewhere where you can read them throughout the day.  Fitbit accomplishes this easily.  And "someone" sends you little 'badges' to your email inbox when you achieve something good - like you've walked 50 miles or climbed 25 floors.  It's very reinforcing. Yes, I don't pay much attention to the badges, but when I get a message, it is another reminder of Fitbit and my goals.

So if you need that little bit of encouragement and have a spare $99 - get a Fitbit! It's a bit of a luxury but it works for me.

10,000 Steps

I achieved my goal of walking 10,000 steps every day this week.  I've been wearing a pedometer for quite a few months and counting my steps and miles. I find the pedometer really does motivate me to achieve a certain number.  I've been averaging about 8,000 - 9,000 steps a day but this week I wanted to up my goal.  My goal was therefore to walk 10,000 steps every day.   And I did it!

It feels good to have done it - now for 9 days continuously.  It's 3pm Saturday afternoon - so I still have another 7 hours today to get in a few more steps but after a long walk today, maybe there won't be that many more!   Here my are daily totals starting today:

  • Saturday - 17,500 steps
  • Friday - 10,668 steps
  • Thursday - 11,708 steps
  • Wednesday - 10,244 steps
  • Tuesday - 10,261 steps
  • Monday - 12,178 steps
  • Sunday - 10,524 steps
That is equivalent to over 40 miles in one week! I feel pleased with myself :-D

Looking at the goal I set and comparing it with my previous blog post, it fits all the criteria. 

a) It was specific - 10,000 steps a day; 
b) It was measurable - I used a Fitbit (I'll tell you more about that in another post, but it's basically a sophisticated pedometer!) to measure the steps; 
c) It was realistic and safe - I had already been walking in the range of 8,000 - 9,000 steps a day; 
d) It had a reasonable time allotment - one week; 
e) I documented my goal and saw it written down frequently by using the computer dashboard for the Fitbit; 
f) I told my hubby about it - and he joined me on many of the walks.

I'm going to keep it up!

So how was your week? Did you achieve any of your goals?  How about setting yourself one for this coming week - using the above criteria?
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