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Gadgets for your new year’s fitness blitz
The new year is a time to take stock, and think about what you could do differently. Basically, it’s time to get up off the couch and get fit, especially after the dietary armageddon that was the Christmas binge. So which gadgets and gear can help you shed the Christmas layer? Break out your sweat pants, it’s time to get fit.
Seven gadgets to get you in shape in 2016:
1. Withings Activité Steel
Withings makes some of the most stylish smartwatches around. Rather than trying to be mini computers that sit on your wrist, they’re essentially analogue watches with an extra dial that shows how active you’ve been. Sync it to an app on your smartphone, and it’ll give you more detail about how many steps you’ve taken, and how well you’ve slept. The Steel is the firm’s latest, and is a mid-range offering – it sits below the standard Activité, but above the Activité Pop. The stainless steel case and silicon strap mean you’ll look good, even if you are a sweaty, huffing and puffing mess.
2. LifeSpan TR5000-DT5
If going to the gym or going running seem like a chore – and we can’t blame you – why not get fit while you work? This is one of the best treadmill desks around. It automatically adjusts its height, and has plenty of cushioning for your feet, thanks to its thick walking belt. It also has Bluetooth built in, so you can wirelessly ping all the stats to your phone, and see exactly how far you walked today. But the best thing about it? At the end of the day you can collapse on the couch and not feel guilty about not hitting the gym.
3. Speedo Shine
You’ve probably seen the Misfit Shine, but you might have missed this swim-friendly spinoff. It works the same as the standard Shine fitness tracker, counting your steps, calories burned, and tracking your sleep. But it also has swim tracking, provided by Speedo. It counts how many laps you’ve swum, how far you’ve gone, how long you swum for and how many calories your swim burned. You can even tell it how long the pool is, for the most accurate reading. The app works with iOS and Android, and a single watch battery will last six months before needing replacing.
4. On CloudCruiser
Running shoes don’t come more technical than this. That chunky sole isn’t just to help with off-road, it also helps cushion the vertical and horizontal forces that you experience during a run. The idea is that with less impact, you develop a more barefoot running style with more natural takeoff. Which will – hopefully – lead to faster race times. If nothing else, lessened impact will mean you can run for longer. There’s also an easy lacing system, so you won’t have to fiddle with it mid-race, and a woven band helps protect your heel.
5. Moox Bike
Is it a bicycle? A scooter? It’s both! The Moox bike has pedals like a bike, but also a platform to stand on and glide along, as if you were riding a scooter. Not only is it sure to get a few admiring glances, it should also keep you interested, as whenever you tire of cycling you can start scooting, and vice-versa. And as any fitness expert will tell you, variety is key to keeping up with any form of exercise. The pedals fold away when in scooter mode, and you can hop between the two modes without having to stop. A sure-fire way to liven up your commute.
6. Apple Watch
Apple’s first wearable has a big health focus. It handles health and activity data way better than most, doing a good job of presenting it in a relevant and interesting way, rather than bombarding you with too much information. And it has some other neat tricks up its sleeve. Sit still for too long, and it’ll buzz to remind you to get up and move around, for example. While Apple doesn’t say it’s waterproof, some videos online have shown it to perform just fine in the pool (though you take it in the drink at your own risk). Look out for the second model around March.
7. Jabra Pulse Wireless
Want to keep tabs on your running progress, but don’t want to keep checking your phone? These headphones have a neat workaround: there’s a heart rate monitor built in. Press the Sport button, and it’ll read out an update on your distance, time and heart rate, so you don’t have to stop and read anything. And because you’re not constantly taking your phone out, there’s less chance of you dropping it. Use the companion app, and you can fine-tune the sound through the headphones, so your running playlist is more bass-heavy than ever.