May 31, 2012

Fifteen Signs You're a Fitbit Fanatic

Two years ago (to the day, surprisingly), I highlighted four squared (16) ways to tell if you've become a Foursquare addict. In the ensuing two years, I've continued to enjoy my regular checkins from place to place, but I've got another obsession that also tracks my comings and goings - not in where I go, but what I do, with the Fitbit. Fitbit, as I described in March, has the potential to take your every day activity and match you up against friends, rewarding you with virtual badges and making you exercise more than you might otherwise.

I'm having a blast telling everyone I know who doesn't already have a Fitbit tracker to go get one, and those who do, I'm recommending we connect so we can trade stats and urge each other on. I even picked up a Fitbit Aria scale to wirelessly track my daily weigh-ins and see if that number is trending the wrong way. With that in mind, I thought it was time to trot out fifteen ways you can check if you're a Fitbit fanatic.

1. You take the long way everywhere - and find yourself scheduling meetings or lunches at a place far more convenient for those you're meeting than yourself. You walk, of course.

I'll take the stairs, thank you.

2. You look incredulously at people who take the elevator, even if you're going to the top floor.

3. You've figured out what optimizes you for the most steps across a distance - walking, biking, skipping or jogging.

Time to fall asleep: 5 minutes! I can beat that!

4. You'd pretend to be asleep when your partner wants attention at night because you don't want to mess up your "Time to sleep" statistics, and you think you can set a new record.

Yes, that would be me, pounding out 20,000+ steps on the last day I'd get credit.

5. You read that Foursquare was about to discontinue their 20k step Fitbit badge on June 1st, so you spent much of May 31st walking around in circles, just so you could get it.

6. If people ask to friend you on Fitbit, you ask them their daily average of steps, and only accept their friendship if you think you will beat them. (I'm looking at you, Matt Cutts)

7. You don't talk about how far things are in the number of miles or kilometers, but instead in steps.

8. You consider getting one of those fancy walking treadmill desks.

9. You find yourself wanting to look at how many flights of stairs you've climbed in the middle of the flight, and you have to restrain yourself until you get to the top, just so you make sure it counts.

Good luck Matt! Hope you reach 10,000 by midnight!

10. You find yourself just a few steps away from your usual goal, consider if you can hit that number before the clock hits midnight, and then go do some laps in the kitchen.

11. While on a walk with a friend who also has the Fitbit, you look at each other's starting step count, and ending step count, compare it to yours and wonder aloud as to whether Fitbit is accurate, if your units are calibrated correctly, or if it's something to do with the other person's height and stride. (My mom and I actually did this on Monday)

12. You memorize your daily weigh-ins and body fat percentages from each morning's weigh-in, and can correctly anticipate both the next day to the tenth of a pound or percentage point.

13. You actively contemplate whether it makes sense to adjust your Fitbit goals to match your real world activity, or adjust your real world activity to match your Fitbit goals.

14. When you type F into your browser's URL bar, it autocompletes Fitbit instead of Facebook.

15. Every time you take a step while not wearing the Fitbit, you're annoyed.

Are you as silly about Fitbit as I am? I am loading up on people to connect with on that service. Find me at and we'll compare steps.

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