Well if fitness is your question than shopping may be your answer! If you are not a fitness enthusiast but aspire to be one, a quick trip to Best Buy or the App Store may be the difference between a morning on the couch or a morning on the run. What could make fitness more fun than adding a heart rate monitor, GPS, calorie tracker, step counter, sleep monitor, and personal trainer to your wrist! That's what you get in the Fitbit Charge 2 for around $150. And if you're a sucker for rewards, stickers, and cheering you also get that through badges, notifications, and soaring rocket graphics when you reach your step goal for the day.
The Fitbit 2 takes the concept of monitoring to the next level with up the minute information on how many calories you have burned so far (resets at midnight), heart rate, and step counter. I found this monitoring to be highly motivating. I immediately wanted to increase my steps to have good data, and was drawn to upping the number of active minutes per day. Easy heart-rate tracking led me to safely increase the intensity of my workout and know when to rest (something that is not totally obvious to everyone through breath and signs in the body). I can easily start and stop a workout and get stats immediately afterwards such as miles, time, pace, calories burned, steps passed, average heart rate, maximum heart rate and more! And it's so easy to set up.
You open the box, enter some basic data (gender, age, weight, etc), sync it to your phone's bluetooth, enter a number assigned to your Fitbit on your phone and it installs itself! (It takes about 10 minutes and must be plugged into a charger). Also, it needs to charge for about 30 minutes every 4 days and can't go in the water. However, it's not a problem for those of you sweaty chics out there - it's water resistant! All in all, I feel like it has taken my fitness to the next level and you will have a tremendous return on your investment! I'm totally addicted!
As a corollary, I wanted to also write about a fabulous app I found through Facebook (an advantage of targeted marketing on social media - they advertise things I want!). It's called Aaptiv. There is a 7 day free trial - then it's $10 a month. It's TOTALLY worth the $10. It has many different categories of workouts - designed for beginner, intermediate and advanced. I've found the intermediate challenging enough and would love to work my way up to advanced! Among its many different workout types are: trending now, fit for summer, ab workouts, 7 minute quick hits, treadmill, outdoor running, elliptical, strength training, indoor cycling, stairclimber, yoga, walking, stretching, meditation, 5K training, 10K training, half marathon training, full marathon training, maternity program and more! I tell you that it's so much to explore you won't be able to wait in between workouts! Each instructor is very good (I have my faves already) and the tone of the workouts is ultra positive, motivational and downright cheery...it will make you WANT to workout!
Basically, what the app is is an audio version of a coaching session. There is super-current, positive music in the background with your coach speaking over it occasionally to direct your attention to your technique, breathing, pacing or provide a motivational insight. The pacing of the instruction is so well-executed and the cadence of the songs is so on point that you will wonder who the master mind is behind such an elite product! And don't forget that when you don't have the energy for a 30 minute session you can do a 7 minute workout - which can be so intense you will want to quit after two minutes!
Anyway, I consider these two things to be a coach on your wrist and a coach in your phone. I'm not saying it's going to make me an elite athlete, but I know one thing for sure. I will be in a different place physically in a few months than if I had chosen to buy some more outfits instead of invest in my health! In the end, I highly recommend both products. Rush out and buy them! It'll be the best money you've spent on yourself in a while.
- Betty Lynn