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The Health Revolution

The Health Revolution

On a daily basis, the question I am most commonly asked is: “that is so cool…what is that on your wrist?” And it’s not the rainbow bracelet my daughter made me. It is more like those bracelets you wear when you are under house arrest.

nikefuel

My device du jour is the Nike+ FuelBand. And I have not taken it off my wrist, except for when I literally broke it for over-use, since I first received it as a gift from my husband (which he soon regretted). If I was a workout fanatic before, this definitely took me to a whole ‘notha level.

Wrists everywhere have been flashing these devices as the must-have accessory that tracks everything from the number of steps taken in a day to the hours slept.

Welcome to the latest “health revolution.” The large influence of technology in our daily lives will continue to progress, with a key component involving health and fitness.

According to a recent Forbes article:

  • By 2017, at least 30% of American consumers will regularly wear a device to track sleep, food, exercise, heart rate, blood pressure and even glucose;  the global market for wearables in health and fitness alone could reach 170 million devices.

The exciting part is these devices are your motivational conscience.  In a study by researchers at Indiana University, people who wore a pedometer daily walked 16% more than before wearing one.

Seeing actual data on your daily activity helps you set goals and compete against yourself. There is truth in this. On a daily basis, I commit to reaching my goal of 5,000 fuel points, and then, try to beat my history above and beyond that number. It is motivational, inspiring and has become my personal trainer. My app lights up like a bling rainbow when I succeed and rewards me with “trophies” when I excel. It’s amazing.  I recently tweeted Nike when I hit that much sought-after 1.5MM goal, and they actually replied to my tweet challenging me to hit 2MM. Silly, silly Nike. Clearly they do not know me. Highlight of my year (and my Klout score ;-)).

Quick review on the most popular devices out there:

Nike+ FuelBand: for score keepers – it’s motivational to keep you on track of hitting a daily goal (gives fuel points earned, tells time, reports calories burned and steps taken): https://secure-nikeplus.nike.com/plus/

Jawbone: for fitness fashion gurus (more subtle and streamlined, tracks how you sleep, eat and move): https://jawbone.com/up

FitBit: Original, non-bracelet, clip-on device connects to your clothing, jacket or shoe (tracks your steps, distance and calories burned) – most recent release is a bracelet option that also tracks your sleep: www.Fitbit.com

These are just a select few of the many available on the market. The above devices connect to apps on your smartphone to track your successes.

In additional to the individual motivational benefits, the thought is that before long, these devices will be able to send real-time data to doctors, nutritionists and trainers – backed by real personal health statistics.

The New Year is the perfect time to start tracking your daily performance and being accountable for your activity level. These apps and devices can also help build a social community by connecting to others using the same programs, creating a sense of competition, goal setting and accountability.

So if you are looking for something to replace all those Christmas returns, for a mere $100-150 you too can be in house arrest and start your new year on track.

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