Fri, April 03

Be Fit Fit! Wired?

Oftentimes, I am asked which type of applications and electronic devices I am using at present.

The bad news is that I am somewhat electronically- and device-challenged, meaning that I only use these devices when I really must. And when I use them, I bet I do it at 10% of their potential, having not discovered all the cool stuff they can offer to me! The array and the vastness of possibilities simply scare me. Oh, well, it must be personal, because then, our 12-year-old daughter comes and claims it is all SOOO EASY to navigate!

My point of view (and the lame excuse not to go too wired) is that instead of watching TV, I better go out and exercise. Instead of letting my computer know what I ate and see if it is happy with my daily consumption, I just eat healthy. To the best of my knowledge.

After all, we should have an upper paw over the devices! You'd not believe how many times I get into the discussion that this or that person is REALLY going to start their walking program, but only upon the reception of their newest pedometer/watch/tracking device. Which is either not ordered by that person yet, or on the backorder, or on its way, but the UPS delivered the product to Kansas, nor Arizona. So, tough luck, no walking for now, until the infamous pedometer arrives to let us know how much we walk. Only then, we REALLY will beat all the records and we will REALLY go for it!

In terms of the applications, as far as I am aware, there are quite lots of choices to track both your exercise habits and the nutrition. You might check the HealthyOut application, or the Fooducate one. Also, visit or Fitness can be relatively easily tracked with the help of, for example, MyFitnessPal.

I'd just suggest, don't postpone starting your good eating or exercise habits until you become an expert at tracking it all by your devices. The app should be of help to you and you should not feel obliged to "report" to it. I have seen cases where a person let it go for a day or two and intentionally did not record the data from these two days, so it does not "look" bad on the app. Who are we kidding here? Or, the person would eat poorly "because" they did not have access to their app, so they felt it was OK to indulge.

Personally, I do not use any applications. I do use, however, two heart monitor watches, one by Garmin (920XT) and one by Polar (V800). I use them to maintain a reasonable load of training, not to overtrain, and mainly to monitor my heart rates and distances while I train. But if I forget to charge them or forget to wear them, I still train without them, to the best of my capabilities. In such a situation, I simply go by the 'feeling". I just refuse to become too dependent on these devices.

A few months ago, I read somewhere that at the elite level of running, some athletes would, actually, not use the watch from time to time. It teaches them to tune in with their bodies at a different level and to experience how one mile of run at this or that approximate pace "feels." I found it to be quite an interesting, fresh and valuable thing to do in today's world, which is excessively computer-obsessed.

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