Living LifeWise: Life Lessons From My Fitbit

Living Lifewise Sunday, November 24, 2013 Written by

Living LifeWise is a regular column provided by LifeWise Ambassadors – LifeWise employees whose healthy choices are helping them live better lives. Today’s column is provided by LifeWise Ambassador Sarah Swanberg.

Before I owned a Fitbit, I didn’t understand the appeal. You wear a little tracker on your belt and it tells you how many steps you’ve taken in a day. So what? Where’s the fun in that? However, once I got one for myself, I found myself addicted to it.

I have a Fitbit Flex that I wear on my wrist (like a watch). It tracks my steps, how far I’ve traveled in a day and even tracks my sleep. It’s also water resistant so I can wear it in the shower. I have no reason to take it off!

In my before-Fitbit life, I honestly had no idea how many steps or miles I walked in a day. I figured I took maybe 3,000 steps, and walked a mile or so. Wrong! Turns out, on average I take about 8,300 steps. The tracker uses little dots that light up to tell you how many steps you’ve taken. For every 2,000 steps, you get a dot. It’s like a game – the more you walk, the more dots you get. I made it my mission to light up all five dots by the end of the day. I wanted to win the game.

I’ve also learned that small things add up to a work out over the course of the day. Here are a few things I do to help me get five lights:

  • Park my car farther away from store entrances to adds steps.
  • Cleaning my house = exercise.  Walking back and forth when I’m doing laundry, vacuuming or picking up around the house adds steps. I’m staying fit, and my house has never been cleaner!
  • Grocery shopping is just like taking a long walk. Most grocery stores are large and you can cover a lot of ground inside.
  • Syncing your Fitbit with your smartphone to stay on track. Once I synced my phone and Fitbit, I could pull up my exact progress throughout the day. It would give me that extra push to put myself over the 10,000 step mark.

Fitbits and other wearable fitness trackers are great tools to use to stay on top of your physical activity during the day. What do you use to track your daily activity?



Sarah Swanberg is on the continuous path of finding the right balance between nutrition and exercise – the two things that have always plagued her. Having recently been diagnosed with Crohn’s disease, Sarah is learning to enjoy her new gluten-free lifestyle and all the adventures that come with it. Living LifeWise is part of Sarah’s quest to live a long and healthy lifestyle. Sarah works in Communications for LifeWise and lives in Ballard.