10 Years Of Step Tracking

10 years ago, I started a program through work that “encourages you to track your steps and help you to focus on your fitness in a simple and accessible way.”  They gave us a tracker, which attached to your shoe and used “an accelerometer to accurately calculate the number of steps, distance walked, calories burned and time of activity.”  I received that first tracker 10 years ago today.  After a little more than 3 1/2 years, the program shut down and I finished with a little more than 6.5 million steps.That same week, I ordered my first Fitbit, looking to continue tracking my steps.  Which worked out well, at least until last March when the global pandemic caused by the corona virus shut everything down.

That is a total of 22,247,266 steps over 10 years, which averages out to a little over 2.2 million steps per year and 6095 steps per day.  In the early days, this was well above my goals.  I started looking to get 2,000,000 steps in those first few years, which I had a difficult time making.  As I moved over to the Fitbit from the Global Fit tracker, I started meeting those goals and, subsequently, increasing them each year.  These last 2 years have seen some backslides, as I try to get into a sustainable rhythm while working remotely.

Along the way, I participated in some 5Ks, hiked up a mountain, and traveled the world, racking up steps along the way.  Now that the world is opening back up again, here’s hoping the next 10 years is even better.

Fitbit Year 6

year ago, I set a goal of 2,730,000 steps, an average of 7500 steps per day. Thanks to the corona virus becoming a concern in March and the complete abdication of responsibility for managing the pandemic by the Trump administration that led to much of the country still being shut down today, I fell quite a bit short of my challenge, finishing more than a million steps behind with only 1,711,727, the second straight year I’ve failed to surpass my yearly goal for the only times since 2014 under the old GlobalFit program. My average step total per week was 32,917.83, which comes out to about 4702.5 per day. The median weekly total was 31,765.  My best week was Week 27, where a concerted effort to get out during the summer propelled me close over to 56,000 steps for the week.  My worst week was Week 49, the dreaded down week between Christmas and New Year’s.

For the upcoming year, I’m going to keep things as is, in the hopes that I can finally reverse this downward trend. I am leaving my goal for steps per day at 7500, which would again bring me to a yearly total of 2,730,000 steps. Hopefully the third attempt, now that I’ve got this WFH thing down pat, is the one that sticks.

The Decade In Exercise

The 2010s have drawn to a close and its time to take a look back at the previous decade. Today, we finish off the series with exercise, specifically my step performance between 2010 and 2019. I started tracking my daily step totals in July of 2011, thanks to a program at work that ““encourages you to track your steps and help you to focus on your fitness in a simple and accessible way.”  The GlobalFit Destination: You program lasted until late January, 2015.  At the point, I had enough invested that I wanted to continue, so, after looking at a couple of options, I purchased my first Fitbit as a replacement option.  The rest of the decade used one of 4 Fitbits I’ve had (with the most recent coming this past Christmas), giving me about 8 1/2 years of data for the decade.

In just over 3 1/2 years on the GlobalFit program, I finished with 6,511,500 steps.  This estimates out to about 35,197 steps per week, or 5028 steps per day.  My best day came during a 2013 trip to Disney World, where excursions to both Epcot Center and the Magic Kingdom ended with 24,988 steps.  I finished with 45 days over 10,000 steps, 4 days over 15,000 steps, and 2 days over 20,000 steps.  Over the last year and a half, my highest weekly total was 60,216, thanks to a trip to southern California in 2014, and my lowest total was a mere 15,800, thanks to a long Christmas vacation that caused me to lose data before I could check back in at work.



For the nearly 5 years remaining in the decade, I put up 13,041,430 steps tracked with a Fitbit.  That averages out to roughly 2.6 million steps per year, or 50,159 steps per week, or 7165 steps per day, over a 2000 step increase over the GlobalFit program.  My best day came during a 2018 trip to New York, where the day’s excursions included trips to the 9/11 Memorial & Museum, the Museum of the City of New York, Central Park, the Guggenheim museum, and, finally, the Empire State Building.  I finished with 216 days over 10,000 steps, 36 days over 15,000 steps, and 11 days over 20,000 steps.  My highest weekly total was 105,924, thanks to a trip to Washington DC last summer, and my lowest total was a mere 18,510, which really only consisted of 3 days as I switched over from GlobalFit to Fitbit.

Overall, I logged 19,552,930 steps in the 8 1/2 years I was keeping track, with 261 days over 10,000 steps, 40 days over 15,000, and 13 days over 20,000.  I completed 2 BTN 5Ks, 4 Sprint & Strides, 1 hike up a mountain, and numerous trips to foreign countries, amusement parks, and tourist destinations.  My highest step total by locations were: Continue reading →

Fitbit Year 5

year ago, I set a goal of 2,730,000 steps, an average of 7500 steps per day. Thanks in part to only 12 weeks where I managed to meet that combined daily goal, I fell 237,254 short of my challenge, the first time I’ve failed to surpass my yearly goal since 2014 under the old GlobalFit program. My average step total per week was 47,937.42, which comes out to about 6848.203 per day. The median weekly total was 44,710.  My best week was Week 19, where trips to Baltimore and Washington DC propelled me over 105,900 steps for the week.  My worst week was Week 44, where Thanksgiving left me wanting.

For the upcoming year, I’m going to keep things as is, in the hopes that I can reverse this downward trend. I am leaving my goal for steps per day at 7500, which would again bring me to a yearly total of 2,730,000 steps. Hopefully the second attempt is the one that sticks.

Fitbit V: Week 3

After the best week I’ve ever had (using either GlobalFit or Fitbit), we saw a bit of a slow down, with less than half of the previous week’s steps.  Things got off to a slow start on Sunday, as I arrived back home from Hawaii and spent the day resting up, finishing up with over 4100 steps.  Things picked up on Monday, as I went back to work and finished with over 7600 steps.  Tuesday was the high point of the week, using multiple trips to North to score nearly 9300 steps.  Wednesday was nearly the same, finishing just 26 steps below Tuesday’s total.  Thursday was Valentine’s Day, and a missing trip for coffee in the morning put me just over 1000 steps below goal.  Friday bounced back, coming in 29 steps over my daily goal of 7500 steps.  Poor weather kept me indoors on Saturday, for a bad end to the week with less than 2500 steps.

Total steps: 46,787

Daily average: 6683.9

A 10K Step Record

Sunday, after walking around Boston before flying home, I put up a total of 16,577 steps.  While good enough for my 13th highest total of all time, it also put me at 37 10,000 step days in 2017 and 36 during this 3rd year of Fitbit usage.  The 36, through week 28, ties my previous high from the first year with the Fitbit.  Meanwhile, the 37 surpasses the 36 10,000 step days I put up in 2015, not to mention the 36 days l logged between 2012 and 2014 during the GlobalFit era.

With plenty of time left in the year, these numbers are sure to grow, which will make surpassing them again next year another challenge.  I’m sure I’ll be up to it.

Passing GlobalFit

In 3 years and 29+ weeks of the Global Fit program, I finished with 6,511,500 total steps.  On Sunday, in less than 2 years and 24 weeks, I surpassed that total while using the Fitbit.

There are many reasons why my time with the Fitbit has been more fruitful.  Chief among them is the number of 10,000 step days I’ve accumulated.  I managed 45 under the Global Fit program and 102 (to date) with the Fitbit.

This was the last major milestone I had to pass from the GlobalFit days, so I’m now in uncharted territory.  10,000,000 steps is the next large goal, and, if things continue on the pace they are, I should reach it sometime in December 2018.  Assuming I live that long.

And I Would Walk 5,000,000 More Redux

Way back on May 2, 2014, after 2 years and 42 weeks of the GlobalFit program, I hit 5 million steps.  Yesterday, in the 49th week of year 2 of using the Fitbit, I’ve once again hit the milestone, coming right on the heals of hitting 2500 miles the Monday before Christmas.  That’s a pretty decent improvement, if I do say so myself.

If you add the two programs together, I’ve put up 11.5 million steps in a little over 5 1/2 years.  I hope the next 5 1/2 years are even more fruitful.

The Ever Growing 10,000 Step Club

Last winter, as the GlobalFit program was wrapping up, I took my last look at the top 20 step days I’ve had since I first started tracking my steps way back in July of 2011.  At the time, I had only surpassed the 10,000 step plateau 45 times.  In the year plus since then, I have managed to nearly double that number, raising the total to 81.  With my first year using the Fitbit coming to an end last week, I thought it would be appropriate to take a new look at my updated top 20 step days over the past 4 1/2 years, featuring 8 new entries.

btn10K-41: 6/6/2013 – 24,988 steps

My best single day total came during my 2013 trip to Disney World.  The day’s excursion to both Epcot Center and the Magic Kingdom ended up with a total of approximately 12.5 miles.  And yes, it still bothers me that I didn’t get those 12 additional steps to reach 25,000.

2: 7/27/2013 – 20,592 steps

My second highest total came nearly 2 months after my highest, thanks to the BTN 5K and a, for lack of a better word, misunderstanding about where I should be picked up after the race.  These 2 days are the sum total of my days over 20,000 steps.

3: 9/6/2015 – 18,259 steps

The first new addition to the list comes courtesy of my trip to Toronto last September.  This Sunday consisted of traversing around Toronto, with trips to Royal Ontario Museum and, at night, the Molson Canadian Ampitheatre for the Oddball Comedy Fest.

4: 9/11/2015 – 17,889 steps

Another new addition thanks to my trip to Toronto.  My last day in the city was spent at the Eaton Centre mall, the Hockey Hall of Fame, and a few other stops.

5: 6/8/2013 – 17,852 steps

My now-fifth highest output brings us back to Disney World, this time for a day split between Animal Kingdom in the morning and Hollywood Studios in the afternoon.

6: 9/5/2015 – 16,083 steps

We head back to Toronto for my sixth highest day, my first full day in the city.  There was exploring along the riverfront and, of course, a trip to Rogers Centre for a Blue Jays game.

7: 9/23/2014 – 15,728 steps

This total was accomplished thanks to the 2014 Sprint & Stride 5K race that was held at work.

8: 9/9/2012 – 14,957 steps

My eighth highest total comes thanks to a Sunday in Belfast spent walking from our hotel, down to the Titanic museum, and then back again.

9: 6/7/2013 – 14,940 steps

Another day of 2013’s vacation to Disney World, this day started with a morning trip to the hotel pool, followed by an abbreviated day at the Magic Kingdom.

Continue reading →

Fitbit Year 1

FitbitY1A year and a half ago, I set a goal to average 5500 steps per day, which would bring me to a yearly total of 2,002,000 steps.  When the GlobalFit program came to an end last February and I switched over to the Fitbit, I kept the same goal.  A year later, I have far surpassed those expectations, finishing with 2,604,933 steps.  My average step total per week was 49,568.8, which comes out to about 7081.3 per day.  The median weekly total was 48,978.  My best week was Week 32, which was my week in Toronto and upstate New York this past fall.  My worst week was Week 1, which fell victim to missing days due to not getting the Fitbit until a Wednesday night.

For the upcoming year, I plan to up the ante a bit.  I am upping my goal for steps per day from 5500 to 6000, which would bring me to a yearly total of 2,184,000 steps.  Seeing as I surpassed that total this year, with over 420,000 steps to spare, I expect I will have no issue with this.  As a stretch goal, I’ve joined up with some friends for 5K February, where I will surpass 3.1 miles (or a 5K) per day.  So far, so good.