Every day for the past decade, I’ve tried to dethrone the family walking champ: my 67-year-old dad. Despite my youthful advantage—he has more than 30 years on me, as he’s quick to point out—I haven’t logged more steps than him once. It’s both embarrassing and an opportunity to take pride in his remarkable fitness. It’s also excellent motivation to find creative ways to finally out-walk him.
My dad and I compete using our favorite pedometer app, which displays each day’s steps in a bar graph. (While we both wear Apple Watches, we like the app best for logging the entire day’s steps, and keep our phones on us all the time.) If you’ve barely moved, your results for the day show up in a disapproving red. If you land somewhere between 5,000 and 10,000 steps, it’s a milder orange. When you hit 10,000 steps per daily, the graph changes to green. It showers you with confetti every time you jump up and/or forward. We exchange screenshots every day. While I may have reached 10,000 steps at least once a week, he surpasses 20,000 each day.
Experts in fitness state that both you and your body are winning.