Does this scenario sound familiar?
You buy the newest health gadget that advertises weight loss through tracking exercise [10,000 steps a day] and eating a certain number of calories [calorie counting]. Sounds promising!
You’re no dummy! You’ve heard those claims before. Try to do two things at once and neither gets done well. So you decide to concentrate on one option – tracking your daily steps with a goal of reaching 10,000 per day.
You clip on the gadget and walk 10,000 steps on the first day – checking every so often to make sure you’re on target. Excitement builds. Second day… another perfect score! Third day … it’s a push, but you punch in those perfect 10,000 steps. Then life intrudes with schedule conflicts, responsibilities of home and work… Day 4, 5 and 6 go by, with no exercise at all. On day 7 how would you feel? Frustrated? Guilty? Ready to say you’ll pick it up again next week or next month?
If the above scenario sounds familiar you are not alone. Using technology as a tool to reach health and fitness goals, is like using yoga or meditation for stress relief. It only works when it’s used consistently.
These days there’s an app or gadget to track almost anything. Many are focused on losing weight through exercising more and eating less.
There’s absolutely nothing wrong with tracking and if it works for you – keep tracking! But if tracking hasn’t solved your weight loss efforts …. read on….
Listening to those who love their handheld devices it seems that activity tracking provides useful, tangible information and an easy way to share successes or frustrations with others.
Funny thing though….Tracking is not what keeps us on track. Finding out where we’re blocked, our “Stress Points” is the key to staying on track with any activity. So it’s important to follow the clues to discover the sticking place.
If you keep getting tripped up time and time again, here are suggestions:
1. Becoming aware that you’re trapped in a loop – negative thoughts and automatic responses - is a very powerful first step.
2. Resist the temptation to believe you are a failure because you stopped or could not keep up with the program.
3. Can you see the real problem? What needs to change to prevent self-limiting feedback loops?
4. Stay with the Stress Point, explore it completely, and mine it for new insights.
While it may be uncomfortable to identify and clear a stuck place, this is an opportunity to stay on track with your goals and dreams for what you want.
Apps surely have a place in the world of self-care. However, they are not a substitute for identifying and resolving the real problem – the Stress Point - and then finding sustainable, satisfying and enduring activities that you have identified as the best options.