April in Review: The One under Lockdown.

Disclaimer: I received a $50 Amazon gift card to review FitnessBank as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave.com to review, find, and write race reviews!

I talked last month about joining the Des Spring Step Challenge for both April and May. It was perfect timing. With COVID-19, I still had a few days of going into work, but working from home had begun to become the norm several days a week. In a normal world, I get a good amount of steps by just going to work, usually around 6,000-8,000 steps. For the first time, I had to really think about how to get my steps for a step challenge!

First, I committed myself to be more consistent about my runs. I started a half marathon training plan for an imaginary half marathon race in early June. It’s imaginary for two reasons. One, who knows if we’ll have races again by June! Two, I’m in South Texas, only us crazies are running that far in the middle of the summer! This training gave me a reason to get up and leave the house every morning, at least for a little bit.

Checking my steps after a 5 mile run!

Second, I started taking advantage of working from home! Every day during lunch, I’d take one of my three pups for a walk for about 20-30 minutes. I already made a point to take a lunch walk during my normal workday, but now I could have some individual time with each of my dogs and they could get their steps in too! However, near the end of the month it starting getting too hot around the time I was taking my lunch break, so we moved the walks to the evening. Pictures below. I know I have to pay the Dog toll ;-).

Third, I started taking my meetings from the treadmill in the garage. I don’t have a huge amount of meetings, but my Mondays are my meeting day. I get around one thousand steps an hour while meeting on my treadmill. It’s a slow walk, but I’m really getting spoiled by it. I’ve never been great at sitting still for long periods of time, so this has been great. A few nights, I’ve still been low on steps and I have TOTALLY played Animal Crossing while getting the steps I needed in.

Halfway through this step challenge, what did I think of the FitnessBank App?

  • The app has a great user interface and is easy to use.  There are also lots of different step challenges! I was only in the Des Step Challenge, but there were other challenges you could join.
  • I’m competitive by nature so this challenge was great in terms of motivation. I loved checking in to see my steps and it was super cool to see Des Linden’s steps right up on the leaderboard with you.
  • I’m still pretty pumped about the participation prizes. Who doesn’t want to win Brook’s Running shoes or a year of races paid for? (I’m going to be racing SO MUCH once we get the go ahead again.)
  • The Step Challenges are FREE. You don’t need to open an account. But with the great APR…I’m REALLY thinking about opening an account myself.

On the other hand, I do have some critical critiques of this app…

FitnessBank App on a Monday evening
  • There were a lot of issues with syncing. It would happen EVENTUALLY, but I would see my steps on the main page, but it wouldn’t add up to my totals or averages until sometimes the next day. It also would never sync until close to the end of the day. I wasn’t a fan of checking my steps and it saying zero until around 6pm.
  • Rather than total steps, the challenge went by average daily steps. It was kinda demoralizing at first to do a long run of over 20,000 steps and seeing your average barely move. I had to switch the way I thought about the step challenge, and spend more time making sure to hit daily totals, rather than accumulative. However, I completely understand why they did this. You can join today and not be too far behind!

Overall, April was a tough month of lacking my usual structure and schedule. It made me think a bit differently/critically about getting my daily activity in and added another level of accountability that I hadn’t needed before. I really appreciated having a step challenge during this to help me focus.

Interested in the seeing more about the Des Linden Spring Step Challenge with FitnessBank? Check out the #FitnessBankBR hashtag on both Twitter and Instagram to see other BibRave Pros checking out their steps. You can also check out their thoughts on their blogs below:

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