The FitBit and the competitive family

FitBit challenges are fun for the whole family


Need to get your family members moving? I have an idea for you: buy each one a FitBit.

Last year, I bought my husband a FitBit. I'd tried, unsuccessfully, to get him moving in the past. He wasn't interested in exercise plans, though. My FitBit purchase was a last ditch effort fueled by the hope that his love of numbers and statistics would transfer from the world of finance to the world of fitness. The result? 1) A near obsession with achieving 10,000 steps a day, and 2) A 10 pound weight loss.

I decided it was a pretty good weight loss tool.

Then, a couple weeks ago, my mother gifted FitBits to my two children, 9 & 11. I'd been ignoring their insistent pleas for the bracelets because 1) they have an uncanny ability to lose everything, and 2) they can't sit still for longer than 2 minutes. I just wasn't concerned about their activity levels.

But guess what happened? My son set up challenges with my husband, sister, daughter, and mother-in-law. The competition became fierce. I found my husband pacing around the house because he couldn't be be beat by his daughter. My daughter made extra laps around the block before dinner, just in case some adult tried to catch up with her as she slept at night. My son got up early to move around, ensuring he got a head start on his competition.

Moral of the story? If you have a competitive group, if exercise has lost its fun, if statistics, badges, and challenges appeal, you may want to add the FitBit to your arsenal of healthy living tools. It may just get you motivated, helping you achieve your fitness goals.

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