Staying fit and healthy is a priority for most of us. However, a life filled with work, family, and friends can make it really difficult.
Luckily technology is here to offer some ways to improve and maintain a healthy and fit life.
While lots of fitness aids come in the form of apps there is also a lot of hardware that can help get you off the couch or making healthier choices.
Here is a list of some of the best technology to help you get fit and healthy. Try each one separately or use a combination of a couple.
When it comes to being in optimum health there is no shortcuts and no measures too big that they are not worth taking. Luckily, these options are fun and easy!
1. Calorie Counter Apps
A calorie is a unit of energy. Historically, scientists have defined "calorie" to mean a unit of energy or heat that could come from a variety of sources, such as coal or gas.
When thinking about nutrition, all food, no matter whether its fats, proteins or carbohydrates contains calories. We need a certain number and combination of these calories to live and function.
If you are training, either to lose weight or gain mass, understanding how you fuel your body is key. A calorie counting app can really help you monitor your daily food needs and ensure you are eating a balanced diet that will help you reach your fitness goal.
Unlike old-fashioned calorie counting, a well-designed app can track not only the calories you eat but the percentage of fats, sugars, and carbohydrates you consume too.
There are a multitude of great apps out there, look for one like MyFitnessPal that offers recipes, blogs and tailored food plans.
2. Heart Rate Monitors
Whether you want to train for a marathon or just get active to lose weight or get more energy, it's important to understand how your body responds to physical activity. The best way to gauge the effectiveness of your workout is to monitor your heart rate.
Your heart rate is the amount of times your heart beats per minute. Having a low resting heart rate generally means you have a strong heart that can pump the adequate amount of blood through your body with minimal effort.
Your maximum heart rate is the fastest your heart can safely beat. Getting an accurate number requires specialized testing labs, but you can get a rough idea by subtracting your age from 220.
For example, if you are 33 your maximum heart rate is 187. A heart rate monitor measures your heart rate either with a band around your chest or via a wrist attachment.
Generally, they connect to a smartwatch or app that provides the readout. Beginning by understanding the way your heart rate responds to exercise is the first step to effective training.
Basic heart rate monitors will show you how fast your heart beats per minute, while more sophisticated models give allow you to set heart rate goals, ranges, and other data.
3. Sleep Monitors
While it might sound silly, getting a good night's sleep is the foundation for a healthy and happy life. For many of us watching just one more episode of our favorite tv show, or scrolling through Instagram before bed means we aren’t getting enough hours with our eyes closed.
On top of that, we may have disrupted sleep due to poor sleep posture, snoring or other issues. Using a sleep app like in combination with a fitness tracker will help you realize what is going on when you decide to go to bed.
Take some time to research what will be the best way to measure your sleep for you. Some hardware like Fitbit requires you sleep with your band on - uncomfortable for some. Others like mobile apps even have recording functions so you can finally believe you have a snoring problem.
Understanding actually how many hours you are getting and then working out what is optimal for you can be life-changing. Data helps makes good decisions. So get the down low on your sleep patterns and start to make changes to get a better rest.
4. Smart Ropes
Jump ropes have been around for years, but this simple toy isn’t just for kids. Jumping rope or skipping has been proven to be a great way to get aerobically fit while staying pretty much in the same spot.
The humble jump rope has been redesigned for the 21st century thanks to Smart Rope. This high tech piece of sports equipment not only counts your workout it provides with up to date calorie information.
Simply download the app, connect your rope to your phone and start your workout. The LED-embedded jump rope displays your fitness data in mid-air, as you work out.
Jumping rope is a brilliant fitness trick for people with not much time or space. The Smart Rope makes jumping rope easy and motivating.
5. Body Mass Index Measurers
Getting fit and healthy is a priority for almost everyone. But understanding your own body is surprisingly complex with much more to know than just overall body weight.
Your Body Mass Index (BMI) is a measure of body fat based on your weight in relation to your height and applies to most adult men and women aged 20 and over. Your BMI is a much better indicator of your health related to your weight than just your total weight.
Measuring your BMI can be expensive requiring dedicated sessions with high tech machines located in gyms or health centers. However, several companies have developed portable BMI devices that you can use at home to monitor your bodies changes as you get fitter.
RIDM and Skulpt are too leading brands of these brilliant gadgets. Both are handheld held devices that use electro frequencies to measure BMI and send the information to your smartphone.
If you are serious about losing weight or bulking up, knowing and monitoring your BMI will et you to your goals faster.
Getting started on a fitness regime will probably result in some aches and pains. Make sure you get back to the gym quickly by aiding your recovery with the FireFly pain relief gadget.
The small band is worn behind the knee where it delivers electrical impulses that aid in circulation and reduce swelling. The device is used by amateur to professional athletes to help them recover and optimize performance.
7. Halo Sport
If you want to take your workouts to the next level, this piece of technology will help you take it there. The Halo Sport is not only a neurostimulation device designed to accelerate gains from movement training.
Its inventors say that wearing Halo before playing sport helps you learn to better control and activate the muscles they need for that activity. The company claims that when paired with physical training, Halo Sport has been shown to accelerate gains in strength, explosiveness, endurance, and skill. Check out all the science behind the gadget here.
Remember, there are no quick fixes to health and fitness but there are lots of aids out there to help. Always consult your doctor before embarking on a radical change in food or exercise.