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Wii

EA Sports Active Blog: Day 1

by Jonathan Metts - May 22, 2009, 10:09 pm PDT
Total comments: 9

As you probably know, the big box for Active includes the game itself (which has its own, standard Wii case), the Nunchuk leg strap, and a resistance band with separate handles. The latter part immediately struck me as odd, because you have to thread the stretchy, peppermint-smelling band through holes in the handles and then tie it off in knots. On the bright side, it means I can later switch to tougher bands for a better workout, as I have several different kinds left from my rehab after a skiing injury last winter.

The neoprene Nunchuk holder is fairly large, with a long Velcro strap. However, it had to be fastened VERY tightly to keep from sliding down my workout pants. I had to reattach it twice during my 25-minute workout, which was annoying. The little pocket for the Nunchuk is just barely large enough to hold the controller; you really need to stretch it out while pushing the Nunchuk down, so it takes both hands. The tightness keeps the Nunchuk from slipping out, but the process of removing and later replacing the controller into the leg strap can be tedious when the activities are changing so often.

Despite some annoyances with the accessories, I like the software a lot so far. You create an avatar at first, but you'll be exercising within just a couple of minutes. The nice thing about Active is that it automatically generates a workout for you; my first day was 25 minutes long, not including all the one-time videos showing how to do each activity. There's a ton of variety, even within a single day's playlist. Active had me walking, running, squatting, lunging, curling, rowing, kick-boxing, and in-line skating within the first workout, and most of these exercises came up twice in the playlist. Each one is obviously pretty short, less than two minutes. The rapid-fire pace seems like a good way to prevent boredom or complacency, but the game doesn't flow so well when you account for all the equipment-switching between activities. Having to reposition the Nunchuk, set up the resistance band, or drag out the Balance Board every two minutes is a bit much, and I was soon wishing the exercises had been grouped by accessories to minimize the gear shuffle. Active does allow for a lot of workout customization, so I hope to find a way to do that organizing myself, but a built-in function would be preferable.

There's no doubt that my first workout was effective, even with all the interruptions for explanation videos (which won't be displayed next time). I broke a sweat within the first five minutes, and I was exhausted by the end of the routine. The in-game calorie count, which constantly creeps upward as you play, said I burned off 140 calories in my inaugural session. I'll be using the Wii Fit Channel to record my weight every morning, since Active does not seem to have a weigh-in feature. Tomorrow should have completely different exercises, as the game targets various muscle groups to prevent overworking anything with back-to-back days of intense workouts.

Cumulative Weight Loss = n/a (first day)

Talkback

Jonny, are you watching your diet at all in conjunction with this workout regimen?  That's a key factor in the impact of your workouts.  If you go out and eat a Big Mac combo after every workout, you probably won't see much progress (not saying that you will, but that's just an example).

I'm interested to see your progress, since I'm considering getting Wii Fit and EA Sports Active myself.

I eat a lot of healthy food. I also eat a lot of unhealthy food. My diet is extremely inconsistent, partly because I have almost zero will power when it comes to food. The best way I've found to avoid bad food is to not buy it at the grocery store. A bit of will power when shopping will last you all week. So as I picked up Active yesterday, I also stocked up on baby spinach, low-cal pasta sauce, organic tortilla chips (with salsa, one of the healthiest snacks in the universe), and several healthy frozen dinners. This wasn't an unusual shopping list for me, but I had E3 and my hopes for weight loss in mind while in the store.

Eating out will be the true test, as I have a lot of opportunities as a college student, and it's much harder to resist the unhealthy foods when they are being prepared hot and fresh before mine eyes.

BlackNMild2k1May 23, 2009

Jonny, do you have an extra NWR pass to E3 that isn't being used so that I can go to E3 with you?

I bought EA Active for my mom (belated Mothers Day gift) and now she's mad at me because she left town for a few days earlier in the week, and when she got back to her find her present, she realized that I had taken my Wii with me and she couldn't play her game. I need to get a second Wii, or buy her one of her own. I hope to give this game a shot pretty soon as well.

Quote from: BlackNMild2k1

Jonny, do you have an extra NWR pass to E3 that isn't being used so that I can go to E3 with you?

Man, you're campaiging hard for a free E3 pass.

Quote from: BlackNMild2k1

I bought EA Active for my mom (belated Mothers Day gift) and now she's mad at me because she left town for a few days earlier in the week, and when she got back to her find her present, she realized that I had taken my Wii with me and she couldn't play her game. I need to get a second Wii, or buy her one of her own. I hope to give this game a shot pretty soon as well.

This explains what people are still buying Wiis for.  MYSTERY SOLVED

The only people who get E3 passes to hand out freely are exhibitors, and we are most definitely not exhibitors. All of us are registered media with full credentials, and that process began months ago. It's simply impossible for us to drag in a random person.

ShyGuyMay 23, 2009

Before and after shirtless pics, come on.

I don't expect a major visible difference in only nine days... plus, Active doesn't really work your abs or pecs much (maybe because Wii doesn't have a good way to measure torso movement).

I'm very interested to see how much you like this and how effective it is. I lost 60 pounds last year but I've gotten complacent the last few months and still want to lose more, I need something to jump start the process again.

Well, I powered on EA Sports Active yesterday for the first time, and so I'll be reading these blogs by Jonny as I experience my first 10 days or so.

My wife actually got to try it first while I was at work, and she said that she tried the "high intensity" workout, and it really really kicked her ass to the point where she couldn't finish it.  I mean, neither of us are in shape, let's be honest, but I was surprised to see it be that tough right away.

Anyways, because of her warning, I stuck to "low intensity" and I was plenty exhausted my first time out, burning 150 calories or so.  My legs are really burning from the inline skating exercise, even a day later, so I'm hoping that there aren't too many leg specific workouts today

I think I'll stick to low intensity for a few more days now. 

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