Reviewing Zamzee: Will it Help Me Be More Active?

I’m going to be honest with you guys. My Get in Shape, Girl workout isn’t going so well. I can blame it on all the random traveling I’ve done lately (vacation = excuse to eat whatever the heck I want), but it really just comes down to the fact that I’m lazy and prefer food that is bad for me.

Meet my Zamzee dude — so dapper in orange!

I mean, that’s pretty much everyone’s issue, right?

So I was looking for ways to bribe myself into thinking exercise is fun. Which as you can imagine is pretty hard to do when you work full-time and have a 6 month old.* However, when I was at BlogHer 2012 I found this cute little guy.

He is the spokes-dude(?) for Zamzee. I hadn’t ever heard of Zamzee before that day but I was given the opportunity to try it out for free. So I figured, why not?

Zamzee is an activity meter that you clip to yourself, much like a pedometer. However, instead of just counting your steps, the meter measures the intensity of your activity. The Zamzee is designed for kids, with the goal of enticing them to get more physically active. There is even a website specially designed for kids and tweens that helps track their progress and has fun activity-based games.

Obviously, I’m not a kid anymore but I decided to give it a try. And honestly, I thought this little meter was pretty cool. Instead of getting obsessive over steps walked and calories burned, it was actually kind of fun to do activities and see how many Pointz I accumulated (yes, they’re called Pointz… which is what the cool kids are into these days. Or is it, kidz and dayz?). You can just plug the meter into your computer and the Pointz get uploaded into your account. Super easy! And I like earning Pointz – it’s kind of like earning a gold star!

This is what a zamzee looks like, mine is black. (Source: zamzee.com)

I wore the Zamzee to my Stroller Strides class last week and tried to push it** extra hard to earn some additional points. I’ve also been wearing the meter to work each day, which is awesome because it gives me a reason to get off my butt. After I’ve been sitting at the computer for a couple hours I click on the website and pick a challenge. Typically for a challenge, I’ll get out of my office for 5 minutes and just do a quick loop around my building. Sometimes, I close my door and bust a move to earn Pointz. And yes, I totally did this last week.

Zamzee is currently in beta, with about 5,000 users and is expected to launch in the Fall. However, the beta program is currently open to the public and you can purchase a meter for $29.95 plus shipping (there is no monthly cost).

Why buy one when I can give you one for free? That’s right I have a brand new meter to give away to my awesome readers!

I’ve never done a giveaway on my blog before, so this is pretty fun stuff. In fact, I’m almost drunk with power. MooHAHA***

So here’s what you have to do to enter the contest: Leave me a comment on this blog post or on the Pocketful of Joules Facebook page that includes the word “Zamzee” somewhere in the text. I will print out the names of everyone who enters and randomly pick a winner. Let’s do one entry per person, per platform – so you are welcome to enter both on my blog AND my Facebook page. The giveaway closes at noon on September 6, 2012. So get your comments in!

 * Excuses, excuses! Do you see what I’m dealing with here??!!

** Push it REAL GOOD… now that song is in my head!

*** That’s my drunk with power laugh. Duh. It’s like in that episode of Friends where I think Ross was doing an evil laugh – there was some sort of blackout and he did his laugh and the lights came back on and Rachel was kissing someone. I can’t find the clip on youtube, but I’m pretty sure it happened in reality and not in my head.

Disclaimer: I was not paid to write this post, but I was given a free Zamzee to review. However, all thoughts and opinions are my own and I would never write about or review something unless I actually liked it!

9/6 Update: This contest is now closed. The winner, according to the Random Numbers Generator at random.org is…. Just Keep Swimming! She can now be one of the cool kids with her very own Zamzee!

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My Best Motivator

I suck at working out.

Okay, maybe I don’t actually suck at the action of working out. What I really suck at is getting motivated to exercise.

It’s funny because I actually do enjoy some workouts once I force myself to do them. Especially when I am able to go to the sessions with my new Stroller Strides friends

Oh, and I really like running 5k’s too. I’m on the waiting list for the Color Run in DC, which looks absolutely AWESOME. I’m also signed up for my favorite race in Baltimore this fall. One part of me is super excited for the race… but the other part realizes I should probably get my flabby mommy butt out there and work up some mileage again!

Now, believe me when I tell you that I am definitely NOT FAST when I run and I’m totally okay with this. What I like is the feeling of solidarity when all the runners {eventually} come running through to the finish line. All breathless, sweaty and proud of ourselves. It’s a pretty great feeling.

You know what does work to motivate me?

Guilt.

Yup, if I tell someone I’m going to be there for the workout and then don’t show up, the guilt would probably eat me alive. I absolutely hate inconveniencing anyone else… even more than I hate forcing myself to exercise after a long day of work.

This is why I’ve committed myself to a new running group (also with my Stroller Strides instructor).

If I know that they’re waiting for me to get out there and run with them, I’ll just have to do it. And hopefully if I start running with them once a week, along with going to a class on Saturday mornings, maybe just maybe I can force myself to exercise even more. I mentioned in a recent post that I was given a Zamzee to try out and I’m hoping between the guilt of committing to sessions and the positive reinforcement of earning points with my activities, I might finally push myself over the hump and get back in shape!

What tricks to you have to keep yourself motivated? Tell me here, on Facebook or by tweeting me at @joulesdellinger!

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Working on my Fitness

As of this morning, I am exactly 3 months away from turning 35.

Yikes.

I don’t exactly feel old (except on nights that Jack wants to have an eating party at 3am), but I definitely thought I’d be in better shape by time I hit my mid 30’s.

I’ve never really been into the whole eating super healthy and working out thing. I had a period of time in my early 20’s where I actually went to the gym on a regular basis, so I was in pretty good shape. However, settling into ‘happy marriage’ mode means that some extra poundage has crept onto my body.

And as nice as it is to have an awesome husband who loves what he sees, sometimes I feel like this video is almost exactly my life (with one kid instead of three, of course):

He may see a saucy mama (who wears way too much eyeliner), but I see a frumpy mom running around like a mess!

Before the baby, every so often I’d decide to drop some weight by working out like a fiend and eating nothing but veggies and air to get some quick results. I’ve tried the Special K diet, the 4 day diet, the eating nothing yummy diet – and {surprise surprise} they don’t work long term. Wow, such a mind-blower, right!?

I didn’t really have an incentive to get in shape before I got pregnant because I was just going to gain pregnancy weight anyways. I actually dropped what I gained while carrying Jack pretty quickly without doing anything special and am now within about 5 pounds of my pre-pregnancy weight. However, it seems like everything shifted around a bit and I’m not so happy with the results.

Since I have my birthday coming up, in addition to a baby who will soon start eating actual food and emulating my eating habits – I feel like now is the time to make a permanent change.

My goal isn’t to get super skinny. I happen to like my curves; I’d just like them to be a little… less.

Like that Tim McGraw song, “My next thirty years, I’m gonna watch my weight. Eat a few more salads and not stay up so late.” I need to start making better choices instead of just having whatever I want. So, I’m using this opportunity with my quick three month deadline to push myself to get back into shape. Or at least, START getting back in shape.

No quick fixes this time. I’m combining a few different things together to make my own fitness plan. Which I’m calling Get in Shape, Girl (imagine that Chelsea Handler is saying it, that’s how it sounds in my head). And yes, for any kids of the 80’s I named it after the super awesome pink and purple workout program of my youth:

Now I kind of want a fun ribbon to spin around with and some weight bracelets… Anyways, moving on.

Here’s my 1-2-3-4-5 plan to being a hot mama:

  1. Now that Jack is able to control his neck/head and I can use my jogging stroller, I’m going to get back into running. To keep me going, I signed up to do one of my favorite 5k races with a girlfriend in the Fall.
  1. I work on an incredibly beautiful college campus and I’m going to start taking advantage of it by taking walks at lunch.
  1. I’m joining a local group called Stroller Strides, which offers outdoor workouts WITH your baby in his stroller. From what I can tell, it’s a mix of walking, running, situps, pushups, etc. I’ll take my first class on Friday and can’t wait to try it out! If I like it, I’m going to go to classes on both Friday and Saturday mornings.
  1. I picked up a copy of the Jillian Michaels Ripped in 30 DVD – which has awesome reviews (including the super buff mom next to me at the Target that credited the DVD in part for her awesome body). The workout is only 30 minutes long, which is great to fit in when I don’t have time to suit up and go out for a full run.
  1. I’m going to go back to eating a lot healthier. Not super-dooper-life-sucks-because-I-can’t-eat-anything-good healthy, just more fruits, veggies and whole grains. And less soda and sugary snacks. I’m not saying that I’m going to cut out all the “bad” food, just put it back into that “in moderation” column, instead of the “I’m hungry, get in my mouth NOW” column.

So, that’s my plan. My goal is to lose 15 pounds by September 19th.

By telling you all, I’m hoping to hold myself accountable instead of sticking with a diet for a week or so and then reverting back to soda and French fries.

Wish me luck! Change is always hard, but I’m hoping that I’m able to make some permanent lifestyle and eating changes that stick with me for the long-term. Not only do I want to achieve “hot mama” status, I also want to set a good example for Jack to look up to.

 

And yes, I totally referenced three different songs in this blog post. If only my life was like that musical episode of Scrubs with everyone singing instead of speaking. Without the brain tumor though, that would be a drag.

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