Monday, 23 June 2014

Three weeks later...

The CftC "fitalong" started three weeks ago. If you missed the announcement, you can read it here. I drafted and re-drafted that post several times before publishing it, because I wasn't sure whether crafty folk would be terribly interested in something that would get you away from your craft to become more active - unless you can knit and walk simultaneously (btw socks are good for that, if you haven't tried!)

Twenty-one days on, I am glad I did because it clearly struck a chord with a number of you. I'm not going to repeat the private conversations and emails I've had with other 'fitalong-ers' and their families/friends who have joined in, but I will share some of the things that have happened for me in the last 21 days.

- I can feel my fitness has improved considerably. I'm not so easily out-of-breath (being asthmatic this is very good news) and have more stamina so have increased my daily goal from 10,000 steps to 12,500 and am regularly doing more than that.
- Using the combination of Fitbit and MyFitnessPal App, I'm much more mindful about healthy eating and staying hydrated. This is impacting the rest of the family. 
- My body is changing. Clothes that didn't fit in May are now comfortable - some need a belt!
- I'm sleeping really well.
- Hayfever aside, being outdoors so much more is great at this time of year. 
- Walking with my mum is nice, we get time to chat - away from distractions - and we have met some lovely people! (You can see below that she's top of the 'leaderboard' after pretty much ditching her car and walking everywhere.)
- My husband works in front of screens all day and usually relaxes in front of screens too. "The kids" bought him a tracker for Father's Day and we have actually been out walking together at weekends - he is OFFERING to come and suggesting walks! This is something I didn't expect.  
- On top of all this, weekly fuel costs have dropped by an average of 30% as I'm using the car less. But I've had to spend a bit more on dog food - Archie is eating a lot from all the extra walking. 
- Getting fitter alongside others has made it much more fun than doing it alone. It makes it easier to stick to, even on the days when it would be easy to make excuses, and that means it's much more likely to become habitual and a permanent lifestyle change. (There's a little friendly competition between a few people who have similar goals, which is quite amusing too!)
The Fitbit leaderboard this morning! Look at the combined results!!!

As a result of all this good stuff, the 'fitalong', which was intended to run for June, will continue into July. New people are still joining in and if you're thinking about it now would be a great time to join us. All you need to do is:
(1) Set yourself realistic goals for daily activity - it could be steps, how many minutes a day you want to be active for, distance, whatever you like. It doesn't matter how much or little you do already, just that you are committing to do more for the sake of your health and wellbeing. My tip, which is really only common sense, is to start off gently.
(2) Decide how you will monitor your progress - it could be one of the many available devices, a smartphone app, or a wristwatch and notebook. It's up to you.
(3) Come and say hello to the rest of the group. You can find a thread in my Ravelry group, and for Fitbit users there is a community group which automatically aggregates all member data, and where we can chat - the image above is from the group's homepage. There is a tag which we're using on Instagram and Twitter, and that is #cftcfitalong. Great for posting quick updates and pictures of the lovely things you're seeing on your walks.

The Fitbit group is the much more active than the other, but of course not everyone is using one of those devices so I was wondering if it would be helpful to add a private facebook group? If you think so, please let me know in the comments or by email and if there is enough interest, I'll sort something out. UPDATE: It's done - you can find the new facebook group here - send a request to join. 

Finally a shout out to everyone who is already taking part - here's to a happy healthy July! 
The New Flex: Wireless Activity Tracker
Note: This post contains affiliate links. Read more about them here

1 comment:

  1. A few people can knit and walk simultaneously, or even knit and run. Look up Susie Hewer :-p


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