Flying Over I-40 N. With Fitbit Step Challenge.

3:45 a.m. Alarm. Whoa. Laying flat on my back in darkness. Where am I? Not in my house. Not in my bed. Not on my pillows. Get a grip.

3:50 a.m. Grab iPhone. Check my position in the Fitbit Work-Week Step Challenge. On top at bedtime, slipping to 6,250 steps behind overnight. Irritating. Damn it.

4:45 a.m. Arrive at Dallas Fort Worth International Airport. Check in. TSA line. Security check. All uneventful. Check boarding pass: Gate C-14. Boarding, 6:15 a.m.

5:05 a.m. I walk. I step. American Airlines Admirals Club 100 feet ahead…soft seats, coffee, a Continental breakfast and 20 minutes of shut-eye. Stupid Challenge. Getting dragged into this stupid step contest by Rachel (daughter) a month ago, and I just can’t seem to Release. Three millennials and me, the Middle Aged Man who’s forgotten that he’s lost most of it. Release, Dummy. Eject. Three of the most difficult words for an Addict: Just let it go. I pass the Admirals Club, stepping heavily down the concourse, dragging my bloody luggage, wheels turning and with every fifth turn an irritating squeal. Gotta get my steps in.

In Week 1 (Oct 23-27), I fell behind the three young ladies, way behind – a whopping 42,228 steps behind on the final day – @ 2,000 steps per mile, do the Math. At 11:50 pm on Friday night, 10 minutes before the expiry of the last day of Week 1, I took my 42,228th step of the day to become the Week 1 Winner of the Fitbit Workweek Challenge – leaving the Millennials in silence, and me on the couch the entire weekend. But the message was sent, don’t be messing with Goomba, the Step-King.

(As to Week 2 and 3, we’re not talking about that. Let’s move on to Week 4.)

5:20 a.m. I walk. I step. Back and forth between gates C1 and C39 at DFW. Voted the Best Large Airport in America. A Barbershop with 6 chairs. Fish Tacos, Best in Dallas. Starbucks. Chilli’s. A Japanese Spa, with a soothing stream of water splashing on wet, black rocks. Chalice Beer Café. Brooks Brothers. This isn’t an airport, this is a high end suburban mall. Step Count: 2700.

5:35 a.m. I walk. I step. I’m pulling my carry-on over square gray tiles in a section of the concourse with older gates. Some Genius figured that square grouted tiles would look great. Did that same Genius think about the thousands, millions, of travellers who would be dragging their luggage over these tracks? Ear splitting clickity clacks. A Man, has to be a Man responsible for this – a Woman would have got this right, and likely would have been paid 25% less. Step Count: 4700.

5:50 am. I walk. I step. The left arm is tiring from dragging the luggage. The Right hand holds the iPhone. Walking. Piling on Steps. Head down. Scanning blog posts and RSS feeds. Nausea sets in. Lift head, woozy. Pass Fish Taco joint again. Stomach does a flip. Imagine Fish tacos sliding down my throat and being chased down with a brew from the Chalice Beer Café. And then running to the John to discharge. Get me outta-here. Jesus. Step count: 6000

6:05 am. I walk. I step. Couple sitting at Gate 13 glances at me and turns to the other. “Honey, something is wrong with that guy. He’s passed us 4x. Look at him. He doesn’t look right.” They chuckle. Step count: 7000.

6:15 am. Glance at Fitbit app. In first place, and then some. Endorphins pumpin’. Win. Win. Win. Win. Comfortably in pole position for the moment.

I’m walking down the ramp to board, and stand in line waiting. I see her, my Rachel rising from bed. Rubbing her eyes. Reaching for her smartphone. Flipping to the Fitbit app and saying:

Wow, look at my Dad. Isn’t he something?”

Notes: Image: Fitbit Logo.  Related Posts: Commuting Series


  1. Your posts always bring a smile to my face Mr K! You are such a character. Well done for winning the challenge, but in my head, all I want to scream at you is “You are enough!” “You do enough!” Just let it go.. ha 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Stevie THE Wonder…”Isn’t he (replace the’s legal but only in this here and now) lovely. Isn’t he wonderful.” Not a question in sight nor sound…

    Liked by 1 person

  3. so funny how quickly we can fall into competitive mode !

    Liked by 1 person

  4. David, you write with such immediacy. I am taken into your shoes, and it it’s uncomfortable(!) So many distractions, so much going on All The Time – I find myself wishing you would slow down, stop competing with your kids, just stop. Luxuriate in the spaces between. Then again, that space makes some people crazy. You might be one of them. Sending you warm breezes and Aloha ❤

    Liked by 1 person

  5. At 5:50 a.m., you lost me at fish tacos. But, major props for battling those airport floor tiles for over an hour.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. The new suitcase is at least a cooperative companion on your stepping journey…I think you won the last challenge in competition with Miss Rachel…

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Ok, you’re showing off!

    About the carry-on, your old one?

    It astonishes me, the way your brain notices everything. But you still don’t looses your thoughts. It too me an hour and forty five minutes to drive back from Oakbrook to home in chicago. And I thought of you. Your brain would have planned 4 blog posts, maybe more. All I could think about is how trucks scare me on highways, and that I need to take my shoes off, hair down, wash my face.

    Liked by 3 people

  8. Those Fitbits sound very stress-inducing! Thanks for the laugh.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. You are the only blogger I know who has me shouting at my laptop. You know you are mad and yet you are somehow proud of it! Still, it’s reassuring to know you can still walk a lot.

    Liked by 2 people

  10. This is very funny! Now if only you could find a way to increase your steps while sleeping!!

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Well done…is it nap time yet? I for one am exhausted 😉

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Love this…makes me wanna do something I didn’t think I could do! So good, a story about a fit bit makes me believe “I can”!!!

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Hey, bro — be careful with that fitbit. Step challenges helped contribute to a need for a total right hip replacement this past year…

    Liked by 1 person

  14. “…leaving the Millennials in silence, and me on the couch the entire weekend.” You never learn, do ya pal? Delighted that you claimed the pole position…for now. Having watched your battles with Rachel play out before, however, I’m not sure you’ll maintain said position for long. Remember, it’s a marathon, not a sprint. And you’d best hold a little back — you’ve got Thanksgiving week to get through… :-O

    Liked by 3 people

  15. My doctor threatened me last month with some kind of diet.
    All I really heard was “Protein Bars”.
    I said “Give me a month Doc, I’ll lose some weight. I’ll get the amount of my diabetes medicine I take down some”.
    I bought $100 pair of shoes. I was invested.
    But I hate walking.
    After a month I’d lost two pounds. That’s not much on a 280 pound guy.

    “How’d you do?” he asked.
    “Two pounds Doc, but I reduced my medicine by 15%”
    He laughed.
    “You need to get a Fitbit”
    “Will that help?”
    “Yes, 10,000 steps a day” he says.

    What we are doing is avoiding the elephant in the room. The protein bars, the diet.

    I break the ice.
    “What about that diet thing with the candy bars?” I say.
    “Protein bars.” He laughs and looks at me. “If you aren’t into it, it won’t work”
    I say “Doc, I like good food. I cook a lot and eat real well. No junk food, REAL food and lots of it”
    He says “If you like to cook, this diets for you. Its real food, with the protein bars supplement. No junk food”
    I think about it a minute.
    “I just have one question Doc. Will I be able to still have my pancakes with real maple syrup on Saturday and Sunday? Its kind of a tradition.”
    You should have seen his face.
    “Steve, I want you to go get a Fit bit and start waking 10,000 steps a day”

    Liked by 2 people

  16. Laugh if you must, our airport has two gates, one baggage claim carousel, sometimes a ticket area might open at 4am…my husband doesn’t like to fly, but does occasionally for work…prop planes, to an area where he catches a big plane…I think that a 727 is the largest that comes in and out on for the few non-stops …the airport closes due to fog or ice, a few times every year…my husband says when he goes into Denver he is at the last gate where it is very cold, and that is were people who go on the milk runs, shiver and wait…to go to the small airports.///I know a man who lives in my state and it is over six hour scenic drive (when the road isn’t closed due to weather) to get to the big International Airport in the states metro area…sometimes he flies out of another state’s airport which is also a very long drive…

    Liked by 1 person

  17. Everything in moderation sayeth the middle aged sage……

    Liked by 2 people

  18. I feel your pain – and your adrenaline and desire to MASTER the steps. I’ve gotten the fever now and then too. Well, more now than then. Until I find myself walking in place in the grocery story with my left arm swinging (supposedly it regards steps when your fitbit arm is swinging). Ye gads.

    Liked by 1 person

  19. You made me chuckle too…the winning mentality personified. Passing the Admirals club that time in the morning…

    Liked by 1 person

    • Laughing. It’s a sickness. It reminds me of:

      I am aware of myself. And, of course, the only things that are aware of themselves and conscious of their individuality are irritated eyes, cut fingers, sore teeth. A healthy eye, finger, tooth might as well not even be there. Isn’t it clear that individual consciousness is just sickness?”

      ~ Yevgeny Zamyatin, We

      Liked by 1 person

  20. Good for you! Thanks for the giggle! Keep up the great work-out!

    Liked by 1 person

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