Vitality Apple Watch Deal: Yes or No?

Should you take the Vitality Apple Watch deal… yes, no, maybe?

TL;DR
Yeah, maybe, but don’t expect to save more than 40% of the cost of the device, unless you love doing long cardio sessions three times a week, religiously… e.v.e.r.y..w.e.e.k.

The Longer Answer…

After a bit of research I now have a Apple Watch Series 2 on the Vitality benefit deal.

The Dark Art Of Goal Calculations

At first I was worried that the weekly goals calculation was not public knowledge. Nobody I asked seem to know how it was calculated and how it escalated. Some interesting comments on the Facebook question I posted. A few unhappy people. I’ve heard stories of people starting out at 400 point per week goals and then quickly ending up at 900 points per week goals. This sounded unfair. I’m still not happy that the algorithm is a black box.

Cardio x3

It seems you just have to assume you will get to a 900 points per week goal very soon if you reach a few weekly goals. The only way to keep getting to the 900 points per week goal is if you do three 30min cardio sessions per week.

Cycling for 30min is probably easy. Running or swimming for 30min is harder. I don’t like running. It’s all about keeping your heart rate elevated for 30min x3 per week.

Is cardio really that good for you? Who knows. I find it very boring. Lots of people think the long boring cardio which Discovery has in mind is lame and a waste of time. I tend to agree. Discovery still thinks eating lots of fruit and carbs is good for you. Muppets.

My Advice: It’s Fine To FAIL

I’m most certainly not going to get to a 900 point target, 4 weeks in a row, for 24 months in a row. That’s a joke actually. I like gym and walking and swimming and cycling as much as the next optimistic watch wearer, but let’s be real, it’s just not going to happen.

Try this…

  • Reach as many targets as possible in the first calendar month after you get the watch, while the weekly goals are lower.
  • Then, try and get to 4 weekly goals in a row on every 3rd calendar month, which kinda fits in with my views on health: The Mindful Hedonist’s Health Guide.
  • The rest of the time, either get to two weekly goals in a month or ZERO.
  • Make peace with the idea that you’ll pay about R290/month on months you are lazy or life gets in the way.

With the above strategy I figure I can get around 9 months for free, and 15 months at 25% discount.

Which works out to around R4500 for a R7500 device. Not bad. Whatever you do, just don’t think you’ll get the thing for free.

But if you own this marvellous modern lifestyle accessory, you can…

  • Swim with the Series 2, yes kids, this one is waterproof
  • Finally say goodbye to your (probably super annoying) phone ringtone
  • Unlock your Mac with your watch
  • Draw and send dick-pics
  • and with bit of luck, be a bit more motivated and incentivised to be healthy

Can’t hurt.

Update 6 March 2017: The 900 points goal is actually not very hard to reach. Get your 100 points per day 6 days of the week with a gym visit or 10k steps, and once a week do a indoor cycle with 80% HR for 30+ min. I try and do some interval training in the cycle to make it less boring. Also, get two+ team members to get more free smoothies.

7 thoughts on “Vitality Apple Watch Deal: Yes or No?

    1. I suspect you’ll have to stick with your current model for the 24 months period.

      Usual trouble with Apple gear, you always want the latest one.

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