Sep
07
2008

  Wii Fit is Hard!

I've had two "training" sessions on the Wii fit now. The first yesterday, the second today. Yesterday I did pretty bad. I wasn't sure how the games worked, and even once I figured them out, I wasn't very good at them. The machine gave me a "Wii Fit Age" of five years older than I really am. Harumph. But if the tests are meaningful, then it might be right since I did so poorly on them.

Today I did better. I spent a little more time in the step class since that's one thing I was reasonably good at, since I've got lots of real-world step experience and the wii fit version is pretty similar. I also tried some more yoga poses and a new strength-training exercise today. Some of those strengh-training ones are hard! I did the push-up / plank combo and exhausted myself on that. But I'm pretty good at the exercises that target the oblique abs, again since I think they are similar to something I do in real-life.

Michelle was over and we tried the two-person running. Yesterday, I had a nice little jog and found the one-person version more amusing than actual running. Today I started out jogging like yesterday, but in the two-person version I could see that Michelle and the "trainer" were way out in front of me! I had to run faster to keep up! At one point, I was so far behind I could hardly see them, so I decided to sprint to catch up. But you don't really run, you're just jogging in place. So my "sprint" consisted of me moving my feet very quickly in place, I think there was a scene in the movie Flashdance where the girl ran in place during her dance. It was like that.

Not only did I catch up to Michelle and the trainer, I passed them! Now, I didn't really mean to pass them, since the Wii warned us to run slower than the trainer, but I had built up some momentum and couldn't help myself. But once I passed the trainer, a big command came on the screen to follow the dog! I wasn't expecting that, and I wasn't sure if I was being punished for running too fast so I suspected the dog was going to lead me astray. The dog did lead me to the finish line, but it didn't run on the path, it was just running all over the place, and I was laughing so hard at this point that Michelle was able to overtake me and win the race. So I say the two-person running game can be pretty fun.

When I took my "health exam" today, it said my Wii Fit Age was only one year older than I really am, which I found more reasonable than yesterday's assesment. Although it's not like I'm four years more physically fit than I was yesterday, I just figured out how to use the machine a little better.

As part of the program, the game tracks the minutes you are exercising and updates your "Fitness Bank" after each activity. Both yesterday and today I kept up until I had 30 minutes of activity. It actually takes longer than 30 minutes, since there is switching between activities, and some of them have explanations or other exposition that takes a little time.

On a lot of the balance activities my little Wii figure has a sad face at the end since I score "unbalanced". The machine gets all smart and asks if I trip a lot while I'm walking. Actually, yes, I do. I'm heartened by the memory that I first thought Guitar Hero was difficult, even on the "Easy" level, but it didn't take long for me to get up to speed. So I trust that if I keep up with these various activities that I'll get better at them with practice. And who knows, maybe I'll actually wind up with better balance in real life!