Step Challenge Check-In With John

The SparkPittsburgh Step Challenge is almost over and this year’s has been a special one for me.  I am getting as many steps as I wanted to, but I made the steps I got count because during the challenge I got married on September 15th. On my wedding day my wife had given me a gift of a wrist watch and I had a dilemma on my hands.  What do I do with my Fitbit?  To make a long story short, I wore my Fitbit on one wrist and my new watch on the other because I didn’t want to miss my steps.  We are going to do a tour of the coast of California for our honeymoon in November and I cannot wait to go walking and hiking at the different locations where we stop and hopefully, I will be able to get some nice scenic runs in while I’m out there.


I’m currently sitting at a little over 400,000 steps and I’m on pace to hit the 500,000 mark before the step challenge ends, which was more than I did last year.  I’m using the step challenge as the kickoff point for my training for the Pittsburgh Half Marathon next spring that I pledged to do after I completed my first team relay this year.  I’m lucky enough to work in the Waterfront in Homestead where there is a bike/running trail that runs along the river where I have been running 2-3 times a week.  I’m also participating in the Lemieux 6.6k on Sunday, October 14th, which will be a good kickoff point for training to run over the winter for the half marathon next spring.  I have also worked on getting up earlier in the morning and running a quick mile before I have to get ready for work and making sure that I’m getting a workout in the evening after work.  Now that fall/winter is here I will be playing more hockey and hopefully the pond at my friend’s house freezes over more this year so we can go out and play hockey on the weekends and teach the sport to the younger generations.


The step challenge this year has been a successful one for my co-workers as well.  Last year, we had around 150 people sign up for the step challenge, but this year, I wanted to reach more of them.  I was able to get 260 of them to sign up for the step challenge this year!  I have made an effort to reach out to multiple coworkers to hear their reasons why they are participating and they have been inspiring.  I think the best part of the step challenge for me is being able to talk to coworkers at our multiple locations about something other than work.  Everyone has told me that they enjoy the competition and they are having fun competing with one another.  Some have even challenged their families to unplug and go outside for walks after dinner while the weather is still warm.


I hope everyone that is participating finds ways to keep their activity level up during the upcoming winter months and build on what they started during this step challenge in the pursuit of better health and wellness.



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