Huge weight loss from a don­gle

Moose Jaw Express.com - - Front Page -

The wooden sup­port beams in our house are thank­ing me for my im­mense weight loss pro­gram. My doc­tors will be amazed, fit­ness gu­rus will shake their heads in dis­be­lief and cer­tainly the phone will ring ask­ing for my se­cret to suc­cess. Was it a pill, a freeze pack belt worn 24/7, a sur­gi­cal pro­ce­dure, spe­cial foods — in­quir­ing minds will want an­swers. My weight loss dur­ing the week of Oct. 19-25: A mere 771.4 lbs — that’s pounds, not kilo­grams, not grams, not tons or tonnes, but pounds. What’s go­ing on in our house? one might ask. House­mate re­cently pre­sented me with a new techno gizmo, a leather strap fit­ted with com­puter ge­nius that tells me how many steps walked, how many floors climbed, records heart rate, gives sleep in­for­ma­tion, notes calo­ries burned and best of all, pro­vides weight change data. This bracelet came to our at­ten­tion one day re­cently when a new friend told us all the ca­pa­bil­i­ties of the band she was wear­ing, in­clud­ing the abil­ity to track her sleep pat­terns. I asked if it could in­ter­pret dreams and she wasn’t sure. From that con­ver­sa­tion came the gift a few weeks later. I looked at it with skep­ti­cism and dis­may, es­pe­cially when I had trou­ble read­ing the fine print of the tiny in­struc­tion book and couldn’t fig­ure out what to do with one of the es­sen­tial parts, it be­ing called a “don­gle” A Google dic­tionary ad­vised that a don­gle is a small de­vice able to be con­nected to and used with a com­puter, es­pe­cially to al­low ac­cess to wire­less broad­band or pro­tected soft­ware. Now I know so much more! Af­ter in­sert­ing the don­gle I was able to go to what is called the dash­board where I reg­is­tered my bracelet with some un­seen com­puter chip some­where and pro­vided in­for­ma­tion that I wasn’t sure I wanted any­one, let alone vir­tual strangers, to know. Af­ter wear­ing the thing for a week, I got the re­sults of my life for those seven days. I walked 18,202 steps which trans­lated to a dis­tance of 7.33 miles. I climbed six floors, burned 20,046 calo­ries, slept an av­er­age of seven hours and 50 min­utes, took an av­er­age of one hour and 34 min­utes to fall asleep AND ex­pe­ri­enced a weight loss of 771.4 pounds. House­mate was cu­ri­ous when he heard my hys­ter­i­cal laugh­ter, likely think­ing I was hav­ing an emo­tional break­down. He was only slightly im­pressed with the other recorded ac­tiv­ity lev­els, but when it came to the weight change data, he too hooted loudly, ex­press­ing at the same time, a con­cern that my gift wasn’t work­ing up to ex­pec­ta­tions. One week later I got up­dated re­sults for another seven days and learned that it hadn’t recorded any sleep pat­terns and dis­ap­point­ingly, ab­so­lutely no fur­ther weight loss. It told me I had walked fewer steps than the week be­fore but had climbed more stairs. My most in­ac­tive day of that pe­riod was Nov. 1. I dis­pute that de­tail, but who should I call to com­plain? Will I con­tinue to wear this gizmo? Sure, be­cause, af­ter all, it does have an ac­cu­rate time-telling com­po­nent and be­cause I do strive to walk as much as pos­si­ble, this will be an in­cen­tive to get those boots a’walk­ing. I will con­tinue to climb stairs although it doesn’t reg­is­ter most trips I make up and down to our base­ment but it did note a stair-climb when I walked up an out­door in­cline. But I still can’t fig­ure out the weight loss cal­cu­la­tion — per­haps there’s a ding dong in the “don­gle” — or maybe I just have too much nat­u­ral elec­tric­ity in my wrist. Walk on, just walk on.

Joyce Wal­ter can be reached at ron­joy@sask­tel.net

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