Walking – 2020

Interestingly, the one 2020 goal that’s generated the most discussion has been my walking goal (walk five miles a day). One week in, let’s see how it’s going.

First, I wanted to clarify a point: since I’m using my wearable’s data to check this statistic, it’s probably less walking than you imagine. The five miles is the total distance I walk during the day (to/from the closet, down to the kitchen, out to the car, etc.). It does include some longer walks I take throughout the day—I like to get up from my desk to stretch my legs and spike my heart rate while I think about my ongoing tasks. But yeah, it’s the total walking, not an extra 5-mile jaunt on top of all that.

Second, I’ve already missed the goal one time (we were at a party one night, and I was too tired by the time I got home, wa-waaaa). On the one hand, I’m disappointed that I’ve already missed the goal. On the other hand, it’s a lot less disappointing than if I were breaking a 100+ day stretch. So, I forgave myself, collected some data and thought about a couple ways to measure the goal.

I plan to measure my average daily mileage and the number of days I meet my goal, and grade myself accordingly. According to the graphic below, one week in, I met the goal 6 out of 7 days (86%), averaging 5.65 miles a day. So I’m averaging a B, but making up the missed mileage on other days.

Yes, this a nerdy way to track this, but I’ve found in the past that if I collate things in spreadsheets and color code the successes, it gamifies the task enough were it’s slightly more fun than arduous.

One thing I’ve realized is that I’m more prone to take a short walk in the evening if my mileage is close, but I might risk missing the goal. This “extra” walk isn’t much by itself, but it’s more than what I was doing before.

Regardless, that’s where I’m at, one week in. I’ll keep at it, and keep you posted.

Thanks, -Pete

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