Following in the footsteps of our very own Mickey DeLorenzo, this past month has been an experiment of my own. This time, I have taken on Wii Fit U, the newest fitness game from Nintendo. Back in 2007 and 2008, Mickey did experiments with both Wii Sports and the original Wii Fit. With the newest edition, the question remains — can playing Wii Fit U get you and/or keep you in shape?
On November 4, 2013, I received my Fit Meter, and I played Wii Fit U for the first time. It was on that day that I decided to play it for at least 20 minutes a day for four straight weeks. Before we get into the details, I will say that I did accidentally skip two days. Only one of those days, however, was not filled with any other exercise. I feel it is also important to note that this has been an overall goal of mine to get back into shape, so I have made a conscious effort to eat a bit better and begin running at least two to three times per week, in addition to playing Wii Fit U every day.
During my daily workouts, I checked in with my current weight, BMI, and balance. I took a photo of my face on most days, when it did not ask me to do my balance test with my eyes closed. I also manually input my waist each week. Over the four week experiment, I allowed Wii Fit U to track the following:
- Calories burned
- Progress photos of my face
My daily workout consisted of going straight to the “Personal Trainer” mode in Wii Fit U. I was able to put in a desired exercise time (for me, this was at least 20 minutes per day), choose what types of activities I wanted to do (I usually chose “random”), and chose a level of activity (I always chose “random”). From that point, I did one activity after another until my time was finished. Some days were filled with more games, others were filled with more yoga, and still other times were a big mix of different workouts. This allowed me to focus less on the types of exercise and more on the time requirement.
Due to my schedule, I was not able to keep a consistent time for my Wii Fit U weigh-ins and workouts. Sometimes, I did it in the morning, and other times, I did it in the afternoon or at night. The game itself does mention your weight can fluctuate up to 2.2 pounds per day, so it is important to try and take your measurements at the same time each day. Nonetheless, when trying to take daily measurements, that was impractical. Similar to Mickey, in his Wii Fit Experiment, I did have to travel with my Wii U and Balance Board on one occasion, as my wife and I took a short vacation, just so I could keep my commitment to check in and exercise daily.
After four weeks with Wii Fit U, I have dropped 8.6 pounds and lost 2 inches on my waist. Also, my BMI dropped 1.27, and my balance got better. I have the Wii Fit U face photos, and I will show the photos from the day before/after, because it just so happened that the day I started the experiment and the day I ended were on days when I took the balance test with my eyes closed. On those days, it does not take a photo of you.
November 7, 2013
- BMI: 27.98
- Weight: 188.9 lbs.
- Waist: 37 in.
December 5, 2013
- BMI: 26.71
- Weight: 180.3 lbs.
- Waist: 35 in.
Wii FIT U WORKOUT SUMMARY
DAILY BODY TESTS
After seeing my progress over this past four weeks, I am planning to keep up my daily routine for at least another two weeks. I may stretch it into three weeks more, but holiday traveling will unfortunately put a halt on the daily workouts. I do, however, plan to keep playing as much as possible throughout that time. Expect at least one more update from me after two weeks. Beyond that, I do plan to keep exercising, checking in on my weight at least once or twice a week on Wii Fit U, as to track my continual progress.
My goal is to hit a BMI of 24 eventually, so I plan to keep with it over time. So, even though the initial experiment has come to a close, you should expect to see periodic updates over the next few months as I get closer and closer to my goal.
For those who want to join with me and others from NintendoFuse, join our Wii Fit U community! Our code is 0980-3570-3623.
I do want to take a bit to say a few things about the game itself. Overall, it is a great piece of software that seems to do a good job of making exercise both fun and engaging. Being able to track more of your progress is great. The addition of the Fit Meter and the progress photos is great, as it gives you a more rounded view of your progress.
There are a few hiccups along the way, though. Having to keep hitting the A button between workout activities is a bit annoying when you are just wanting to keep it moving. On some occasions, you are allowed to hit the B button between workout activities. Do not do this, though, unless you are ready to go back to the main menu, because that is exactly what it does without warning. Also, when playing multiplayer, it is very annoying that your calorie count and records are not saved.
If you are looking for a fun way to get into shape or stay in shape, Wii Fit U is a great deal. It does have some aspects that need refinement, but the overall product is fairly strong. The ability to go with random workouts or focus on exactly what you want — specific time, number of calories, or parts of your body — and the Fit Meter make it much better than its predecessors. In the end, it is a great buy, and if you act fast, you can still get the free one-month trial.
Final Score: 8.5 out of 10