Diets, Gadgets and Weight Loss, Oh My!


It’s true, I love gadgets! My love affair with technology began years ago with the Palm Pilot, remember those? Since then I’ve owned numerous generations of iPods, iPads, and iPhones.  However, I now have a new favorite! My fitness tracker watch, the newest addition to my gadget collection, has significantly changed my life and led to my amazing weight loss.

Almost a year ago, eleven months to be exact, my doctor had recommended dietary changes, weight loss and increased exercise to lower my elevated cholesterol levels. Like everyone else who receives poor lab results I was somewhat scared, but knew I needed to take immediate action. How could I change what I thought was already a healthy lifestyle?  After all, I had been strength training and swimming. I didn’t think my eating habits were that bad.  

My children will be among the first to confirm my love for the newest craze in technology decided my fate as a birthday gift for me that would embrace my passion for devices and help me achieve my goal of a healthier lifestyle. I couldn’t wait to open the blue and white box that held the revolutionary fitness tracker that looked like a watch. The little machine was wireless and measured a multitude of data such as heart rate, the number of steps I walked, steps climbed, and quality of my sleep. I was able to sync my mobile device to the tracker and found an app that would allow me to log in my food and activities. The device was fun and super easy to use,  but I was a little skeptical about wearing it every day, not to mention the daily logging in of my food. Would I be diligent about using the many functions of the watch or would it become one more job to do each day?

Those were my thoughts almost a year ago. I can honestly report that my tracker is worn daily, it was a fun job to do each day. More importantly, my blood work is perfect, I’ve lost almost twenty pounds, and I need new clothes!

It’s all about you!

One of the first thoughts I had when I started wearing the tracker, was that it was a guarantee to a healthier body. I was wearing the over-sized watch, what more did it take? Slowly I learned it was all about me, I needed to pay attention to the data. If I had so many calories in a day then it was up to me to make choices that would fit the plan. Little by little I began to understand the benefit of working out and the additional calories I was able to earn.  

Awareness is key.

The amazing technology I was able to wear on my wrist created a constant reminder of my daily activity. Was I sitting at my desk writing for hours without getting up and moving around? What was I eating throughout the day?  The fitness watch was able to help me achieve my daily exercise and caloric count be keeping me aware of both exercise and food. One of the biggest benefits of the awareness is the gradual changing of unhealthy choices. I began to live a healthy life, little by little and day by day.

Rewards, Trophies, and Success  

Rewards for our accomplishments are something we all need. For me, a lead story or the chance to write my own column is a “trophy.” Everyone has something that triggers their need to work harder, be a better person. My new fitness tracker became my companion and mentor and rewarded me with trophies and badges for my hikes, swims, or strength training.    

Your health is everything, now is the time to act!

Find your passion when looking for a path to a healthy lifestyle. My success was not about the number of steps, technology, or the latest diet craze. Many of my friends have seen how I’ve gradually morphed into a different person. Initially, I was asked “how did you lose the weight” or “what kind of diet are you on?” Now, they follow my example of awareness. Many have invested in buying and wearing a fitness tracker and some come along on hikes or have joined me at the gym. More importantly, I’m excited to be living a healthier lifestyle with friends!


About Author

When Debbie Ceresa was ten years old, she won a school contest but never told her family. The night of the book fair, her parents found out that she had designed the carousel and theme for the fair. Her mother loved to remind her of this story, she was so proud. She took her never-ending ideas for granted. A love for books and education never left her. Years later, at the age of 36, Debbie went back to school and graduated with upper division honors from Northern Illinois University. She also worked as an admissions director at a private academy, where she revitalized the school’s image and implemented a wide range of educational programs. One of the most important personal accomplishments in her life was completing her memoir, A Beautiful View. The story turned into a two-year project that took Debbie on a learning experience with many accomplished writers throughout the country. Following her heart and her hunches, Debbie Ceresa moved from Illinois to Arizona, where she has a beautiful mountain view and the occasional coyote sighting.

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