Getting Fit Is A Race Against Time

ReadWriteBody is an ongoing series where ReadWrite covers networked fitness and the quantified self. This week, it is presented by Fitbit.

Take more steps! Work out more! Get more sleep!

That’s the cascade of haranguing advice you get when you start tackling your health. There are plenty of trackers and apps that will measure your activity and give you reports. None of them seem to acknowledge the hard limits of the clock.

So how do you move the needle on fitness while acknowledging all of your obligations at work and home? I’ve tried a lot of different tactics, from using a treadmill desk to tracking steps. My conclusion: The changes that last are the ones you fit into your existing schedule. For me, that’s doing phone calls in the morning while walking to work, or upping the intensity of my workouts rather than trying to get into the gym more frequently.

Maybe you can take that phone call while taking a walk.

There is a role for software and hardware here: A step counter, whether it’s a wristband or an app that uses your smartphone’s GPS, can verify that you’ve actually moved more from one day to the next. More advanced wearable devices will actually read your heart rate, which is a better proxy for effort, and there are even more advanced sensors on the way.

I recently got a chance to test the Fitbit Charge, a new fitness tracker out now, and with Fitbit’s help, made a video about my experiences in squeezing more fitness into the average day. Please share your own strategies in the comments.

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