SHAPING UP- HUB staffers try a bit o’ fitness

SHAPING UP- HUB staffers try a bit o’ fitness

There are a lot of electronic gadgets out there in the marketplace, and every month brings more. There are a few gadgets that have come along recently that some of us at HUB have found useful. One of these is a family of devices known as Fitbit.

Fitbits come as wristbands or small lozenge-shaped monitors you clip to your clothing. They track the steps you take as well as a number of other parameters and wirelessly record the data to your computer and
smartphone. It uses the same technology that enables the Nintendo Wii to track your movements. It will sync to many smartphones for a real-time reporting.

The record-keeping and goal-setting features of the device are quite useful for motivating the user to establish and maintain a fitness regimen. But perhaps the most powerful of all is the peer pressure that comes from comparing your progress to other users. This “friend” feature is activated by following other users.

Permissions are granted just like LinkedIn or Facebook and you can view the rolling average of your steps over the last 7 days compared to those of your friends.

“It’s amazingly motivating,” said HUB employee Ken Lacey. “If I see I’m ranking in the bottom half of my peers, I get uncomfortable. It does affect my behavior and gets me to be more active—more than I even care to admit.”

Not every Fitbit wearer at HUB likes to advertise their statistics, though. There are at least 3 of us who use the device but keep their results private.

For most of us, though, our steps are out there for anyone to see. We even set up a user group named “Citizens of HUB Nation” so all our HUB friends can follow and share. Anyone in the HUB nation is welcome to join. Our user group is If you are not already a Fitbit user, you will have to fill out a free registration form to see our page.

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