When Brett B., a respiratory therapist at Indiana University Health, learned that his company was gearing up to host a three-month step challenge after launching a Fitbit Wellness program, he knew he had to get on board. Brett needed to lose weight, but he never seemed to have the right tools or motivation to get his health in check. Now with the support of his company, he was ready to make his health goals a priority.
As part of the Fitbit Wellness program, Brett purchased a Fitbit tracker at a discounted rate, and quickly became hooked. He was fascinated with tracking his steps in real-time and loved how the social factor played into his competitive side. “I discovered that you could connect with other people,” says Brett. “The cool thing about that is I’m an extremely competitive person and driven by numbers.”
Brett’s initial goal 10,000 steps a day quickly increased in order to keep up with a colleague that had a leg up on him. Within a month, his daily average climbed to an amazing 34,000 steps. “The hardest part isn’t doing the steps, it’s finding the time to do the steps,” he says. But Brett put finding that time at the top of his to-do list. In fact, he started waking up at 4:00 am to walk two to three hours before getting ready for work with his dog, Dexter.
Brett proudly shared his progress with his family and friends, and soon he was given a new goal by his 8-year-old daughter: walk 1,000,000 steps in one month—about 500 miles! Did he accept the challenge? You bet!
Brett fit in walks any chance he could—with his wife, with his kids, around the hospital, and, of course, with Dexter in the early hours. And all that moving paid off when he reached 1,000,000 steps during the final month of the company step challenge.
Brett’s accomplishment came with benefits well beyond bragging rights at work—his health improved, too. Over the course of those three months, Brett dropped more than 10% of his body weight and brought his cholesterol and hbA1c down to normal levels. “I started feeling healthier and had people telling me I looked great, which makes me feel better than I’ve felt in years,” says Brett.
In addition to ramping up his steps, Brett began logging his food and making healthier choices. “I really challenged myself to improve my biometric numbers and walking was a huge part in that,” says Brett. “Diet became a big part, as well. I changed my diet and lifestyle completely.”
Indiana University Health continues to host regular Fitbit Wellness step challenges, and Brett hasn’t stopped challenging himself to reach his monthly million-step goal. He’s crushed it at least four times to date, and is officially in the the multi-million step club. “My Fitbit tracker has literally been life changing for me.”
Brett’s Advice for Others:
Make the Time
“When I started to challenge myself more and more, I started getting up earlier and earlier. When my goal increased to one million steps, that meant getting up at 4:00 am. It’s worth it!” says Brett.
Always Get Your Goal
“If I’m 3,000 steps short at 11 pm, I’ll go out and walk just to hit my number,” he says.
Find Your Inspiration
“My daughter inspires me every day, and hopefully I’m inspiring her with what I’m challenging myself to do,” says Brett.
Looking to step it up like Brett? Learn how Fitbit Wellness can help your company develop a successful wellness program, boost employee health and happiness, and improve the bottom line.
This article is not intended to substitute for informed medical advice. You should not use this information to diagnose or treat a health problem or condition. Always check with your doctor before changing your diet, altering your sleep habits, taking supplements, or starting a new fitness routine.