Neither Shihan nor his wife were at the dojo tonight, which meant I felt comfortable asking the sensei who teaches on Wednesdays whether he was okay with me keeping my Fitbit on during class. He said that was fine, so for the first time, I have stats for what goes on with my body during practice.
I was surprised at how few “steps” it recorded, to be honest. Sure, we spend the first twenty minutes or so on various warmups and stretches, most of which won’t register on the Fitbit. But it only recorded 1500 for the whole hour, which is equivalent to about fifteen minutes of normal walking at my usual pace. I thought the various punches and blocks would add up to more. The real interest, though, is in the heartrate tracking: I can see where we finished the warmup and started doing basics, and I can see what happened when I ran seven kata back-to-back in preparation for my upcoming test, which is a thing I’ve been doing at every practice for about a month. Turns out that I do indeed spend most of the class in the zones generally classed as “cardio” or “peak,” and topped out the scale at 185 at one point during that block of kata. (It would be amusing to see which kata work me the hardest, but since I was only allowing myself five breaths’ pause between them, there’s no hope of differentiating one from the next via the stats.) 185 is what the American Heart Association considers the usual “maximum” for my age, so I feel safe in saying that I’m working pretty damn hard when I do that kind of set. 😛
I wish Fitbit had a way for me to save that data and label it “karate,” so that I can add it to my stats for the day any time I go to the dojo. But I also wish they made them waterproof enough to wear while swimming, and that they could make the actual unit thinner; I can’t get everything I want.