Friday, September 18, 2015

death and reincarnation

My cell phone's pedometer decided that today would be the day for it to pull a Ben Kenobi and just—poof—disappear into the Force. One moment, it was there; the next moment, gone. This was simultaneously annoying, disconcerting, and frustrating to me, but the program vanished from all my lists and menus, so there's no recovering it.

I got right to finding a replacement via Google Play, and I settled on the Google Fit exercise app, which seemed simple and straightforward. It actually lacks a lot of the functionality of the dearly departed native Samsung app, but all I care about is the pedometer, which seems more or less accurate. I had racked up around 3,600 steps before the Samsung app disappeared; with the Google Fit app, I logged another 4,709 steps. This is what I expected to log, i.e., about 8,000 steps just while I'm at work. I took the subway home today, but if I had walked home, that would have added another 3,000 steps (it's a thirty-minute walk, and I walk at a rate of 100 steps a minute) for a total of approximately 11,000 steps. Another hour of walking, and I'd be averaging 17,000 steps a day on weekdays. Some of that hour-long walk could be partway up Daemosan, given the steep way that the trail begins.*

So how did I rack up all those steps while at work? I walked a five-minute lap around my building for every twenty-five minutes of work, i.e., 500 steps a shot. (See my recent "frank" post for a discussion of Pomodoro.) Over eight hours, those 500-step bursts add up. My boss was amused, but as I noted before, the method works wonders for my concentration and, by extension, my productivity.

At least I have another pedometer for the phone. I don't know how or why the original one disappeared, and it's upsetting to know that all those data have dispersed into parinirvana. But with Google Fit now wearing the red shirt and sitting in the same unlucky spot as the Samsung app, I'm back in business and ready to continue counting steps. September and October won't be very impressive in terms of step count, but I hope to be back up to speed come November. Fingers and tentacles crossed.

*I may end up buying a flashlight headband so I can hike Daemosan at night. While that won't resolve the safety issues involved with hiking the mountain in the rain or snow, it'll open the mountain up to me during clement weather, after work hours. The stairs on that mountain are hell, but they're my ticket to once again losing weight.


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