I am a geek about many things. Television, books, comics and even some types of technology. But I completely fail when it comes to video games.
I remember when Pong came out. I played the original Atari at a friend’s house but we never had one of our own. Then I went off to college, the first two years at a military academy, so I completely missed the video gaming revolution.
My kids have offered to teach me but the games haven’t interested me enough to want to spend the time learning.
Until we got a Wii and I saw this Wii Fit product.
A game that helped you lose weight.
As someone who’s struggled with eating right and being in shape her entire life, this was definitely appealing. I admit, I don’t use it as much as I should, as I prefer going out to the YMCA, but this is the first video game I love. I totally kill on the obstacle course. My younger son is jealous.
Apparently, I’m not the only mom who loves this game because there’s an entire website devoted to it: Wii Mommies.
It’s grown to encompass more than just the Wii Fit. The site includes active forums, blogs for community support, and discussion of other fitness games as well. Nintendo first noticed her when it read the tips on using the Wii that Mahoney had sent to Parenting Magazine.
It’s brought her some measure of fame. She recently met fashionista Tim Gunn at BlogHer, John Madden and Oprah’s trainer Bob Greene.
Maloney was kind answer to answer a few questions about how she got started and how she continues to stay fit for GeekMom.
GeekMom: Using the WiiFit was obviously a revelation for you but what do you think was the one key ingredient to losing weight and keeping it off this time?
For me personally, the key ingredient to keeping the weight off is knowing that I’m an inspiration to hundreds and if I can’t keep myself in shape how could I possibly motivate others?
It’s the community who motivates me. I also thank the Wii Fit for teaching me yoga. I practice it daily and it helps me mentally and physically and it’s been a key factor in keeping my weight off.
GeekMom:What’s your favorite part of using video games to be fit?
Although in the summer months I do love to be outside, I love that I use these games in my home on rainy or cold days. Even when I am at the pool I use the moves I’ve memorized from virtual fitness to help keep me in shape. It also helps that it’s on a gaming system so I don’t feel like I’ve wasted and money. If a fitness game doesn’t work for me I know I still have others to choose from and my kids get the benefit of playing games on the Wii as well so it’s not like I went to buy a treadmill that I turned into a laundry hanger.
GeekMom: Have you tried the Kinect at all? Do you think that technology will help all gamers, not just the ones using fitness games, to get into shape?
To be honest, no. The Nintendo Wii is the reason for my weight loss and I am dedicated to the Wii and the Wii alone. While I encourage individuals to use whatever products they choose to get healthy, I will only stick with Nintendo products. I’m not endorsed by Nintendo in any way, I’m simply grateful to them. I owe them my health, happiness and because of my weight loss success and my creative writing ability, I’ve been able to reach out to others to inspire them to do the same.
GeekMom: Do you kids use the fitness games or do they see it as an adult thing?
These products are for children of all ages. While some of the products are too high impact for children, I saw that a lot of third party companies like Nick Jr. are coming up with kids’ fitness games for use on the Wii.
When your kids are restless and bored on those nasty days outside, you can put them in front of the TV, put a game on and help them burn off some energy without having to leave the house and go to a fast food place that has a play area that may not only be unsanitary but may lead you to purchase and eat foods that won’t help aid in weight loss.
GeekMom: What’s your current favorite game?
I’ll only work out to two virtual fitness products because those two are the ones that worked for me – the Wii Fit and the EA SPORTS Active series. I don’t see a need to rotate through the dozens of games out there, although I do try them all and see great qualities in each. I’ve been able to work hands on with individuals from each company and not only have formed friendships but I know the products so well, I’ve found that I can give tips to friends and family on proper form for a certain move even if we’re not around the game!