Apple Watch

Got myself an Apple Watch on Wednesday, thought I'd post a few thoughts, opinions, and experiences I've had over the past few days.

  • Small, sleek design. Opened the package and thought I had accidentally ordered the 38mm instead of the 42mm.
  • While not a necessity, the Apple Watch has already filled a niche in my life.
  • If you let them (and I have), the activity rings will gently motivate you to complete daily fitness goals.

Regarding activity, the only ring I initially had trouble filling was the 'active minutes' ring. Not knowing how 'active' one must be, or how the minutes were tracked, I assumed taking a long walk would count towards my minutes. This was not the case. After a day or two of deliberately forcing active minute through strenuous exercise (burpees, push ups, ab workouts, and dive bomber push ups - exercises which I couldn't keep up daily over time), I looked for another outlet to satisfy my new activity taskmaster overlord.

I found that merely raising your heart rate for an extended period of time was enough to count the minutes as 'active'. So far I've been able to have mowing the lawn, stacking firewood, the intentional exercises I mentioned above, as well as strength training (olympic lifts) count as active minutes. Pro-tip; the time between, and after your workout while your heart rate is elevated seem to count towards your 'active minutes' (so don't hit stop on your workout until your heart rate is sufficiently decreased).

The Apple Watch has allowed me to notice how active, or inactive I am, and to adjust. I'm not falling prey to the 'gamification of fitness trackers' as John Siracusa has mentioned, but more akin to Merlin Mann's 'more data = better decisions'.

On a separate note, for any of you out there with treadmill desks, I've discovered that if you walk on your desk with your Apple Watch on (hands resting on your desk/keyboard), AND your phone in your pocket, the steps logged by your phone will be canceled out by the non-steps logged by your watch. I do hope this gets fixed in the future, but for now I take my Apple Watch off when logging steps on my tread desk.

(I have an additional fitness goal outside the three that the Apple Watch sets that I like to meet each day of 10,000 steps - but alas, because the activity rings on the watch are currently one-way only with the Health App on iOS, none of my tread desk activity yet counts towards my activity ring goals [but is reflected in Health App on my phone])