How I Love Thee

I left the house yesterday … without my Apple Watch. And what actually went through my mind was, “damn it, I have two workouts planned today and neither of them will be logged.” I admit, for a moment I felt cheated.

I asked myself the question that I started asking myself many years ago about many of the things I was doing that were “good for me” … what did it truly do for the way I looked, the way I felt and for my overall health?

And my (kinda pathetic) moment passed and I got a grip real quick. Because the answer was a pretty obvious absolutely nothing. At most, next to nothing. I wasn’t going to not carry on with my day. My body and mind would have the benefits of the exercise I was going to give them. Just like they did before Apple Watch existed and before I semi-religiously wore one on my wrist (Steve Jobbs, RIP – even if sometimes you weren’t very nice). And just like all those workouts before and during my fourteenth heart rate monitor konked out (Polar, you got your money’s worth out of me).

I know we all love our Fitbits, Garmins, Suuntos, smart / super / fitness watches, activity trackers of all kinds. I certainly LOVE my Apple Watch. And my Garmin, come to think about it.

And I kind of know why it’s so satisfying when you get your required steps, and the circles are full, and you get clever little notes telling you how great you are. Productive, strong, kick-ass. Gold stars all around!

But think about it. We’re getting approval from a gadget. And it makes us feel like a million bucks.


Fascinating, really.

Oh I know there are all kinds of “good things” about the reminders and the emphasis on “lifestyle” and all the rest of it. The gadget is just confirming for us that we’ve satisfied our exercise and move requirements. Or reminds us we haven’t.

Nothing wrong with that. But still, it’s a little curious that we don’t intuitively know what those things are, and/or we feel better when the gadget tells us. And does what it is telling us really have to do with better health that will help us look and feel better and live longer?

Ultimately, the initial question I asked myself was the basis for creating the tools that help us think less and just do.

That is, after all, the real key. Certainly a real key to health. And where the gadgets help us do, well … who can argue with that? Assuming that is what they are doing.

But for those of you who have had moments like me when I forgot to put my watch on, or felt the device wasn’t giving you enough credit because for sure you burn more calories than that and so you “cheated” (you know what I’m talking about), or maybe you just told yourself it didn’t matter what the gadget said because you had a hard day …

In those cases we have to at least consider what else the gadget is doing. Is it all good? Dunno. So I never forget to ask myself, “What exactly is [this] doing for the way I look, the way I feel and for my overall health?”

I’d love to hear your own answer to that question. You might find an interesting insight in there. Or not. Either way, let me know in the comments below.

(PS As always, some of the best discussion happens in our private Facebook Group, Healthy Adult Athletes. Request to join and add to the discussion!)

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