Samantha keeps fitness in the family with UP3™

Samantha Kading

UP3 Black Gold Twist

All the exercise I do is with my kids, so we have to involve each other. When they have an investment in the process, they feel an accomplishment at the end. It was incredible to have them experience that with me.

“The hardest thing over the last several years has been getting enough sleep,” says Samantha Kading, an UP3™ wearer, cycling enthusiast, and mother of three. “My first was awake every hour on the hour for two years, and then the next one came along. After my third kid was born, I was really looking forward to getting my sleep back during the night.”

Like most parents, Samantha's life and routine was virtually unrecognizable after having children. She smiles wistfully, recalling her leisurely days spent road cycling over long distances and many days. She still cycles occasionally, albeit over shorter distances and fewer days, but being woefully short of free time not only impacted her days—but her nights too. “I really wanted solid rest again, but it was hard to commit. Those nighttime hours are also my only personal hours,” Samantha says resignedly. “I felt like, ‘If I go to sleep now—I just have to wake up in the morning and it's back to the usual day.’ Yet, I knew that getting enough sleep was something that was going to be important for me feeling back to myself.”

In order to reclaim the healthy sleeping habits she lost eight years prior, Samantha got an UP® tracker. “When I first started wearing the UP band, I could see the amount of disruption I was having during the night,” she sighs, recounting the unfortunate past. “I had gotten in the bad habit of staying up until 11:30PM or 12:30AM, whenever my youngest son came in—just so I wouldn't be woken up. My husband gets up at 4:45AM for swimming, the dog wants to go out at 5:30AM, and the kids wake up at 6:30AM. Seeing in the UP App that I was getting a cumulative four and half hours of disrupted sleep each night, it was pretty clear—that's not enough.”

Compelled to take immediate action, Samantha recruited her husband for support. “My husband also wears an UP band. We both set bedtime reminders so our bands buzzed at 10PM. With our reminder alarms set, nobody had to remind each other; we had a neutral reminder to get to sleep each night.” After prioritizing this earlier bedtime, Samantha looked to the UP® app for signs of improvement. “Over 18 months, I could see that I was meeting my sleep goal incrementally over time. More importantly, I was also able to look back and see where I had started. Seeing that progress encouraged me to keep it up.”

Today Samantha consistently enjoys seven and a half hours of sleep a night. As a result of this restful routine, she now has the energy and focus she needs to pursue her fitness goals with gusto. “Most recently I wanted to do a triathlon again,” she explains. “I remembered feeling my fittest at that point, and knew that recreating that event would help push me toward incorporating exercises and training hours into my week. All the exercise I do is with my kids, so we have to involve each other. I did my runs with one son, my husband watched them so I could be able to go for a ride. They're definitely my biggest supporters because when they have an investment in the process, they feel an accomplishment at the end. It was incredible to have them experience that with me.”

In addition to training for the triathlon with her family, Samantha has found other fruitful ways to embrace the pleasures of familial life through fitness. “I have chosen to walk my children to and from school, and what I appreciate about our daily routine is that we have carved out 25 minutes each day that can be for conversation. If it were a car ride, that time would be condensed into 5 minutes and then we would be home, and everyone would be moving on to whatever the next task is—we would have missed those moments.”

UP® is also a hit with Samantha's three children who are keen to emulate the healthy habits of their parents. “The kids appreciate the competitive aspect of it. I remember one night I was folding laundry in the living room during summer, and the windows were open. I heard one of my kids who was outside say ‘Yes, 10,000 steps!’ she says, chuckling gently at the memory. “It's fun to have a group of people participating in the same goal—and scrambling however they need to get there.”