Xbox Fitness: Getting Fit or Throwing a Fit? Week One
Posted by Emma H. Pira
The study begins: week one - done!
I've survived week one! And I'm making it sound more dramatic than it really was! To be honest I've been having more fun than pain, which is promising.
If you're not up to speed with what I'm doing here, feel free to read the introduction or head to the forums where I've got a thread going. The quick story is that I'm trying out Xbox Fitness for a month to get me to take up exercising and trying to lose some kilos in the process. Here comes a breakdown of what I've found so far.
Week 1, Quick Summary
Workout(s): Mossa Groove; planned 5 workouts, 3 done.
My goal for this week was to find a routine I enjoy and then stick to that routine from Monday to Friday, giving me the sacred weekend off. How did it go? Not too well, to be completely honest. I missed two of the days due to headaches and a fever, but now in hindsight I'm thinking that might have been a good thing - allowing my body to get used to it, before completely shocking it. Exercise is good, but like with anything really; it shouldn't be abused or overdosed. So I caught three out of the planned five days, which isn't too bad considering I started from zero.
Before I got started I asked my Twitter followers if they knew of any good workouts to try on the Xbox Fitness app - nobody did, but they did retweet and after an hour of posting, I had several replies with several suggestions. The one that caught my attention was the Mossa workouts with the motivation: "they are fun and you can choose your intensity" (thank you, @mzompicchiatti, for the suggestion).
After having checked out the different workouts they offered, the one they call Mossa Groove caught my eye - a 30 minute session consisting of cardio focused sets, taking inspiration from urban and latin dance styles. It felt very in-line with where I wanted to start; working on my core area while working on stamina (and getting a good sweat), with no extra equipment needed other than the console and Kinect.
The workout itself is entertaining. The coach is motivating, and the routines are pretty fun. The tempo is good, even for me, who hasn't done anything like this in years!
So, to wrap up week one a little bit.
- The system itself. I'm very competitive and the design of the app wants to push you to do better, work harder and go faster by appealing to that side. While working out, you're given a score based on your performance - the better and harder you go; the better the score. Once you've completed a session, the next time you do that session, your old score will be compared to your new score. And not only that; if you've set up your profile right, your score will also be compared to the average score of other users in your age group. During the workout a countdown will pop up for a specific exercise, letting you know where you are in comparison to yourself and to the rest of the world. I found myself waving my arms, shaking my hips and kicking my legs more furiously once that little countdown appeared on screen - so simple, yet so effective!
- Achievements! You also unlock achievements when working out, adding to your Gamerscore. For a competitive soul like myself, this is a very efficient bribe.
- Muscle memory. As you return to a specific workout, your body will remember what to do. I found that this doesn't only make the workout seem shorter, but it also gives you the opportunity to work out more efficiently. Only on my second workout my body seemed to know roughly what was coming up, making everything feel more fluent and smooth and I really had more fun.
- I've got no one to blame but myself for this; lack of water. Hydration is so important when working up a sweat like that. I forgot to fill my bottle up before starting the first round. Never doing that again! The app reminds you to keep a water bottle close-by and the coach in the workout video will remind you. There's really no point in neglecting them. Don't forget water, people!
I'm not too sad about not having shed any of the weight I want to get rid of, simply because I didn't expect anything to happen during the first week. Like I wrote earlier; I just wanted to have a go and have some fun. Next week I will try to be more devoted and do one workout per day (minus Saturday and Sunday). I will continue with the Mossa Groove exercises, but maybe add and try a yoga session for Tuesday and Thursday.
Don't forget to drop by the forums and join in! Share your own workout routines and experiences or just simply come encourage. If you want to know anything or give hints and tips, drop a comment below!