December 26, 2014
Now that we’re done with all the holiday eating and drinking, it’s time to plan on how to get fit in 2015. It’s probably one of your resolutions (as it is mine), so we’ve created a guide to help you achieve this goal with a little help from technology.
This guide includes apps, wearables, and online services available for every step of the way. So it’s time get in shape:
1. Starting on a Clean Slate
After all the eating and boozing, you may want to detox. I’m not talking about juicing for a few days but a sugar detox. The Sugar-Free Detox App is designed to help you break away from the hold sugar can have on your day-to-day life. The app helps you come up with meal plans, from which you can decide on a “low-sugar” option with fruit in the meal plans, or the “no-sugar” option which excludes all fructose entirely.
2. Eating Healthy Can Be Easy
Changing your diet is one of the most important parts of getting fit. Studies have shown that just being active is not enough for weight loss. But planning food does require time, and when you’re on the go, that can be very difficult. You end up eating anything or skipping meals, which is very unhealthy. There are a variety of startups dedicated at delivering healthy meals to your house, such as Diet to Go, The Fresh Diet or Deliver Lean. They customize a meal plan to fit your lifestyle and dietary needs. The cost can vary on service, but it starts at $120 per week for three meals a day, five days a week.
If delivery does not fit your budget, there are sites and apps that provide you with meal plans for you to prepare yourself. Cook Smarts and Plan to Eat help you come up with meal plans and even creates your grocery list. These services start at $4.95 per month.
3. Time to Get Physical
To stay in shape, you need a minimum of 2-1/2 hours per week of moderate-intensity aerobic activity, or a minimum of 1-1/4 hours per week of vigorous-intensity aerobic activity. Making time to exercise is very important. There are various apps available that can keep you in shape and on the move.
FitBit ($99) is a very popular wristband carrying a full-scale system which implements exercise and sleep tracking devices, a special weigh-in scale, and mobile apps. If you don’t want another device around your wrist, Argus app is the next best fitness tracker. Argus monitors your steps and calories, and you can input nearly any other health and fitness data points you want to track, including activity, sleep, and food.
If you need exercise ideas (or you’re on a business trip) Fitocracy provides you with workout ideas and uses game-like stats to increase your dedication to working out. If you are more into running app Nike+ is a personal favorite or Pocket Yoga for those looking for those looking to exercise the body and relax the mind.
4. Measuring Progress
If you want to improve on something, you need to track your progress, and the behaviors that cause progress. Researchers call this “self-monitoring,” an important part of your your progress.
This smart body analyzer keeps track of your weight and body fat measurement, monitors your heart rate and updates all this information to your phone. Withings WS-50 ($149) is a smart scale that comes with an app to keep your progress on check.
A more affordable alternative is a regular scale and using an app like BodyTrack.it. Rather than focusing on weight alone, it also allows you to log body measurements, body fat percentage, and photos, giving you the most accurate picture of your progress. From dashboard-style reports to advanced photo comparison tools, Bodytrack.it has tons of ways to keep you motivated, on-track and in control.
5. Find a Support System
Support systems used effectively during weight loss can contribute to weight maintenance. A study conducted by the National Weight Control Registry found people who lost weight and continued bimonthly support group meetings for one year maintained their full weight loss. It’s about accountability.
MyFitnessPal is a mobile app and website that gives you a wealth of tools for tracking what and how much you eat, and how many calories you burn through activity. But it also has a community where you can connect with people trying to get fit. There is also the Lose It! app where you can connect to friends, family, and peers around the clock for the support you need, when you need it.
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