The Data Motivator

jacquibo profile image Jacqui ・2 min read

You're now at home and sat in front of a different desk or screen all day, but you're still in front of a screen for a lot of hours. You know you should be more active for your health, especially in our current situation, but what is going to really motivate you to get active?

Me, active?

I don't mean going out and running a half marathon or cycling 50k, just activating yourself, raising your heart rate and getting going each day, or at least 3-4 times per week.

What's your motivator?

As a techie what do you like? Personally I quite like data. I could go for a walk each day but I want to know about that walk: how long was it, how far did I go, was I faster than yesterday? It's also nice to know what my face-to-face or online friends are up to as well. Am I quicker or more active?

Get That Data

So: data. Collecting this data is very simply in reach via your smartphone. Download an app like Strava [Android | Apple], Google Fit, iOS Health or any of the many other apps that you might like, available on the Android and Apple app stores.

There are loads of free ones. I personally use Strava, which I was recommended by a friend, which is great as we both 'follow' each other and can see what we are both up to. There is also the option to require all your followers to be approved by you, which I highly recommend.

Simply install, set up an account, put your shoes on, and off you go. Some apps will track automatically and others you will need to tell to start recording (e.g. Strava).

Compare and Contrast

Once you've done this twice or more you can compare your data. When you've connected to friends via the app (many like Strava can synchronise with your contacts to automatically find your friends).

If you have a watch (e.g. Fitbit or similar) or another monitor like a Garmin chest band then you can collect and compare even more data. What was your average heart rate? Were you in cardio or fat burning and for how long?

Motivation Challenge

You will likely find that the data and friendly competition between friends is a great motivator to get active and challenge yourself. A challenge to one person may be a 1k walk or 10 pushups, to another, it may be a 10k run or a 30-mile bike ride.

Set yourself a goal and some quickly achievable milestones on the way to that goal. These milestones will be more motivation for you as you work your way towards your goal.

Keep going, keep pushing, and get active to improve your health in these unprecedented times. But above all please make sure you are observing social distancing and all the current rules wherever you are in the world.

Stay Home. Stay Safe. Protect Front Line & Key Workers. Keep Active.

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A creative and proactive software architect, encouraging an environment of communication, creativity, innovation and flexibility.


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