Tag Archive | Zamzee interviews

Zamzee, My Family, and Making Exercise Fun

By Virna McKinney

zamzee picture 108

One day last April I walked my son William to his classroom on the second floor of his school. By the time we got to the top of the stairs, we were both out of breath. In that moment I really felt like a failure as a mom. Walking to his classroom on the second floor was a struggle that William had to face five days a week, at least three times a day. I knew I needed to do something to help both of us, and that’s why I started looking for a way to make exercising fun.

I found Zamzee by doing a Google search for a child’s activity monitor. Since I had just joined Weight Watchers a few days before, I decided to get one for myself and both my kids. William was eight and Taylor was five at the time. They were both really excited to get started. When their Zamzees were fully charged, they started doing jumping jacks. My kids and I set challenges and ran in the backyard, or took walks around the block. During the summer break we spent hours in the backyard kicking and chasing the soccer ball. We also bounced on the trampoline, hula hooped, and jumped rope.

Pretty soon, Taylor joined a cheer squad and William joined a basketball team. Because they had their sports practice on two different nights of the week, I decided to take advantage of this time by walking around the track for an hour. But the surprise occurred when each child opted not to watch their sibling practice, but instead walk the track with me. Taylor didn’t actually walk. She ran. FAST. So that made me run too, to keep up with her. On one of our walks I set a challenge for William, without knowing he wasn’t wearing his Zamzee. When we got home I told him to plug it in to see if he had met the challenge. He said, “I forgot to put it on it but that’s ok. It’s not about the points anyway. I needed to walk.” That was a proud mama moment for me.

Continue reading

Advertisements

Can Adults Use Zamzee?

Jeff and his kids taking a walk last weekend.

Jeff and his kids taking a walk last weekend.

Hi Team Zamzee,

I just wanted to take a moment to tell you how much Zamzee has helped me change my life. A few minutes ago I ordered the Xbox reward after the last few months of busting my butt to earn the Zamz for it. It was a great motivator for me, and Zamzee will continue to be a great source of motivation for me and my family.

As of this morning, I’ve lost 39.8 pounds since getting my meter. I still have a long way to go to be “fit,” but I’m well on my way…and it’s largely thanks to you and that little blue meter. I spend the better part of 2-3 hours per day walking now. Time that I used to spend in front of the TV or computer is now spent doing challenges. I have more energy, my fat clothes don’t fit any more, and my wife is finding me more handsome every day! 🙂 Continue reading

Zamzee at Hill Middle School

Zamzee_SchoolZamzee was designed to get kids moving. There are schools using Zamzee across the country, and we love hearing from program leaders about Zamzee’s impact.

Thanks to funding from the Cigna Foundation, Loretta Sander of the Chicago YMCA in Naperville, Illinois designed an after-school program at Hill Middle School using Zamzee to get a group of kids active. She’s working with Brad Sulkowski from Northern Illinois University and together they are doing great things. We recently interviewed her to find out how the program is going.

Zamzee: Thanks for taking some time to talk with us, Loretta! Can you tell us more about why you decided to use Zamzee at Hill Middle School?

Loretta: Absolutely! When I found out I was able to do a kids program with Zamzee, I knew right away that I wanted to work with middle school students. Middle school kids desperately need physical activity – exercise brings those positive endorphins that help middle school kids feel better about themselves and their life outlook. The problem is lots of kids don’t like being involved in big group activities like sports teams (my son included!). But just because some kids don’t participate in sports, that doesn’t mean that they should miss out on the benefits of exercise.

Zamzee: We totally agree. So what are the kids in your program doing to get active?

Loretta: We are doing a five-week program for fifteen 6th, 7th and 8th graders at Hill. We meet every Tuesday and Thursday after school to do cardio, calisthenics, circuit rotations and interval training. We use a room at Hill so the students don’t even have to travel anywhere. All students were given a Zamzee at the start of the program and have been using it all along to track their activity and (of course!) get rewards.

Zamzee: And how are the kids liking Zamzee?

Loretta: They love it! Actually, at the beginning, a lot of the initial draw for kids was that they could earn rewards with Zamzee – they love the gift cards. That made them want to work out and participate in the program. They think it’s pretty cool that they can earn these rewards on their own, without the help of Mom and Dad. It gives them a sense of empowerment, which is a great thing for kids at this age. And the more they started working out, the better their bodies felt. Continue reading

How to Get a Free Xbox

Zamzee_Xbox

pburdette stands in front of her Xbox!

The most popular item in the Zamzee Rewards shops is the Xbox 360 Console. Earn 21,000 Zamz and this sleek black beauty could be yours.

But new users often ask us, “Does anyone ever win an Xbox?”

Yes. Just this week, pburdette dropped 21,000 Zamz and we sent her an Xbox the very same day.

So how did she do it? We interviewed pburdette so you can learn her tricks and earn an Xbox yourself.

Zamzee: Hi pburdette. Congrats on winning the Xbox!

pburdette: Thanks! It feels great to have accomplished my goal.

Zamzee: No kidding! What are you planning to do with the Xbox? Do you have any favorite games?

pburdette: I am going to give the Xbox to my son and I am sure he will have a favorite game to play.

Zamzee: Wow, your son is super lucky to have a mom like you. Have you ever earned any small rewards on Zamzee, or have you saved all your Zamz for the Xbox?

pburdette: I saved ALL my Zamz for the Xbox because that’s what I really wanted. I’m not sure how long it took me to get enough Zamz, but I enjoy exercising so it didn’t seem like very long. Continue reading

Interview with a Zamzee User: Akiva (Age 6)

By Barry Joseph, Dad, and his 6 year old son Akiva

Akiva on Zamzee

My now-six year old son had a Zamzee during the first half of this year, which he used nearly every day. Not wanting to undermine his nominal but existing internal motivation towards physical activity, we decided not to provide motivation to use it  – no money from us to put on it, no reminders to use it, etc. If he wanted to use it, it was all up to him. And the only external motivation would come from the Zamzee Web site and the game mechanics within.

He took full responsibilities for his Zamzee – from the money that went on it to remembering to take it out of his pants before putting away his laundry. I interviewed him about it while we were driving back home from a long day spent at a summer Amusement Park. He was playing the game Temple Run on his iPod.

Me (Barry): The folks from Zamzee asked us to tell them what it has been like for you and for our family to be using  Zamzee.

Akiva: Yup.

Barry: Last December I told you about Zamzee for the first time. Do you remember what it was like when I first told you about it? Continue reading