When I re-joined the gym back in January, I thought that spending money on the membership would help motivate me to get back into shape. And it did. Sort of.
One month I’d get to the gym 3 times a week, then something would happen and I’d fall off track again. Sometimes it was for legitimate reasons (like getting the flu!), but others were just me making excuses.
For a while, I was getting a lot of motivation from a coworker who was also trying to get into shape. We’d encourage each other to go to the gym right after work, and we’d stop each other from eating that slice of cake whenever there was an office birthday.
But she was making much more progress than I was.
She had a FitBit.
I track my workouts but I don’t track my health or fitness otherwise. Since I moved back to a desk job and am no longer chasing toddlers around all day, it’s blatantly obvious my daily activity level has gone way down
But I didn’t realize just how bad being back at desk job has been for me.
My quality of sleep has also gone way down. Which makes perfect sense, since I’m spending most of the day sitting inside under harsh fluorescent lighting staring at a computer screen. (Which is horrible for you!)
I’ve struggled with sleeping disorders most of my adult life. My husband’s shift work (which can be as early as 5 am) didn’t help, but was easier to manage when I was also working shift-work, or only working part-time hours.
I have, of course, heard of FitBits and similar devices before, but I didn’t know anyone that had one. So when my colleague started to show me what sorts of things it tracked, I was intrigued.
Intrigued enough to decide that I
needed wanted one, too!
A FitBit would track my sleep for me, allow me to see my progress (or lack thereof) towards my goals, and help keep me motivated.
But I was also in the middle of what basically became a month-long money panic attack. I had realized that even after being back to work full time for over a year, our finances were not improving.
So how could I get something that I wanted, without having to spend money on it?
I’ve always been a bit of a points hoarder. Unless those points can be redeemed for cash, I just keep answering surveys and banking the points until I find something to spend them on.
The problem with survey sites, however, is that the payout per survey can be extremely low. It’s not uncommon for a survey that takes you 20 minutes to complete to only be worth 10 cents. It can take forever to reach a reward level, and in a lot of cases, isn’t even worth your time.
Unless of course, you can get on a high(er) paying survey panel.
And lucky for me, I just so happen to be part of one that pays out $1-$5 CAD per survey. It’s still not a ton of money, but I was able to earn at least a $10 gift card each week in my downtime.
I could have waited another week or two to get enough points to cover the whole price, but I was too excited to wait any longer.
Plus the FitBit I wanted was on sale.
Meaning I got a $130 FitBit Flex 2 for only $15!
(And yes – I do realize the irony of me spending more time sitting behind a computer in order to get a gadget to encourage me to spend less time doing just that.)
I’ve had my FitBit for almost 3 months already and I love it!
It did take a bit of getting used to at first. My sister and I had some initial issues with it not tracking our steps properly. (For me it was when I was using the elliptical at the gym, for her it was when she was pushing my nephew in his stroller.) And I kept looking at it expecting it to tell me the time (but the model I have didn’t come with the watch feature).
But once I figured out what settings work best for me, it became second nature.
I like having all that data together in one place, where I can quickly assess myself and identify my bad habits.
Although I don’t consider myself to be a competitive person, the workweek hustle challenge has been a real motivator for me. (Even though I almost always come in last place!) It helps keep me much more accountable and aware of when I’m falling behind and encourages me to catch up.
I’m also a big fan of the call and text notifications, as I always keep my phone on silent and have missed many calls in the past.
(And as an unexpected bonus, after I bought my FitBit, my sister, brother-in-law, and mother all bought one too, so it helps to kind of keep us connected, even though I live far away from them.)
For me, the FitBit has been a welcomed, healthy addition to my life that was worth every
Now to get back to hoarding points until my next want comes along.
YOUR TURN: Have you ever saved up points in order to buy something you wanted? What’s the best thing you ever used your point for?
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