Apple Watch and Health

Photo by Tanja Heffner on Unsplash

Having that thing go off, it's less about it going off every hour and asking me to stand for a minute, but of reminding me of the passage of time, that as a human being, I feed off of motion the same way that I feed off of food.

How often will the watch ask you to stand or move? If standing and moving intrude on my focused work effort which should win out? The stand/move or the focused concentration? What do I do if I am merely a participant in a 2-hour meeting with high-level executives? Do I just stand up in the middle of the meeting and walk out because my watch told me to?

Then linking that into, wow, I actually have more pain today. Tomorrow, I'm going to make more of a conscious effort to really pay attention to when the watch tells me to get up and move, and maybe have a walking meeting.

How do walking meetings work in practice? How easy is it to convince a group of people (or a single person) to go outdoors in very cold or very hot weather and work (think) while walking? What if one member of the group says no (perhaps they have a medical reason)? Does the other members of the team pile on in convincing that person to do a walking meeting?

My wife just walked by while I was reading this article and suggested we go for a walk. I asked her if we could go in about 30 minutes. My Dexcom indicates that my blood glucose is 50 mg/dL. I need a glucose gel. If this had been a request for a walking meeting at a specific time I would have had to decline. For medical reasons that I would not want to explain to anyone.

Were you mindful when you were eating? Did you eat things that, at the end of the day, are going to balance out to cover all of the different nutrients you needed so that your body and your brain can function?

Yes. Sure. I have type 1 diabetes. I already do way more testing and monitoring and daily nutritional analysis than most people.

When we're talking about health and wellness with colleagues, with patients, or with clients, one of the things that we definitely do talk about is it's a buffet. It's rarely going to be a one-size-fits-all. It's really about paying attention to what it is that you need, and finding that best fit.


A few of my friends and family have asked why I don't have an Apple Watch. They read some hyperventilating article about how Apple is working on a blood glucose monitor for diabetes. My Dexcom G5 CGMS is helping me do 247 blood glucose monitoring because of the ever-present risk of hypoglycemia because, like most people who have lived with Type 1 diabetes for a while, I have hypoglycemia unawareness. It's not a quantified lifestyle device toy.

Even if the Apple Watch could accurately monitor my blood glucose, it would need to be connected to me 247. My Dexcom transmitter battery last three months. Snapping in a new pre-charged transmitter takes two hours. The Apple Watch is good for 18 hours and needs to be connected to a charging stand to re-charge. This is nowhere near to being a replacement for my Dexcom G5.

Watch or Apple Watch

Ben Brooks's grandmother gifted him his late grandfather's watch. He stopped using his Apple Watch shortly after.

Pick up my wrist, and I see a fine timepiece which is never in a hurry to tell me what to do but always there no matter how I pick up my wrist or glance at the screen.

It turns out; the best watch is an actual watch.

Who knew…The Wrist

I wanted an Apple Watch. But I found myself contriving reasons I need it. I would use it to get notifications from CGMS via my iPhone. I would use it to track my activity. But ... those reasons never felt compelling. There was something missing.

I remember telling my wife "No" when she asked if I wanted an Apple Watch for my 50th birthday. To me, a watch is more than just a timepiece. It's a family heirloom. A watch doesn't have to be expensive to fit that nostalgic image. It just has to be something that reminds you of that person.

When I was a boy, my father wore a Seiko 5 Automatic. It wasn't expensive. At least, I don’t think it was. As a boy, I loved trying on that watch. I loved the heft of it. It was solid. It did not have a battery but was wound by movement my Dad made as he moved. I was fascinated by the way that works. A watch that stored kinetic energy. I always hoped that one day my Dad would give me his watch, but he chose to give it to my younger brother. I am ok with that. Dad gave me the Asahi Optical Co. Pentax Spotmatic II he used to take photos on our family vacations and many explorations around Bequia, St. Lucia, Barbados, and St. Vincent.

That camera has sentimental value to me. It is associated with memories of my youth and my Dad and the happy childhood spent on the beach. To set the record straight, my Dad is very much alive and will be for many years to come.

For me, what the Apple Watch lacks is that intimate connection to people and memories. It feels like electronics. Electronics, unless they are old shortwave radios, don't have that same feeling to me. Electronics outgrow their usefulness, especially electronics that must be updated via software. I don't see anyone passing on an Apple Watch in the same way as Ben describes in his post.

Apple Watch: Do You Need One?

It needs to justify its existence no more than any other watch — mechanical or electronic — ever made. Of course you don’t need it. No one, not one person on the face of the earth, needs any $400 watch, Apple Watch or otherwise.

The right question is simply “Do you want one?”Daring Fireball: Watch, Apple Watch

Published via MarsEdit