Commercial Parts Support Register a Product Blog

Technology to Inspire Your Workout Routines

Stuck in a workout rut? Don’t panic. Everyone has been at one time or another. If you are wondering where to start, why not let technology give you a hand? Try a few of these tips to give your workout routines a new life:

Recruit a Buddy. Whether you meet up in person or use an online application, working out with a partner increases your accountability. Free applications (like ViaFit) have made this easier than ever by incorporating online fitness tracking software that links with many other fitness apps (just in case you and your buddy use different devices) allowing you to effortlessly upload your home workouts, set goals, and motivate each other. Having trouble finding the right workout partner? Many apps can help you with this as well by creating on-line communities with common goals and challenges.

Set a New Goal. If you’re not feeling motivated to train for a race or event this spring, fitness apps and devices can help you set a goal that’s customized to what you do want to achieve. Tracking steps, increasing your total time spent exercising, or accomplishing a set number of workouts are all manageable goals that can be tracked through popular apps. Seeing your workouts on your home screen and receiving congratulatory messages through your smart phone can go a long way towards motivating you to stay active and step up your training this spring. Customize your software’s goal setting feature to set your unique challenge.

Image

 

Try a New Gadget. From smartphone apps to GPS enabled wrist watches, fitness devices can be found in every price range and can inspire you to go further, run faster, and try new experiences.  Breathe new life into your spring training by familiarizing yourself with a new app or device and maximizing its benefits through customizing the settings to your profile. Incorporating a device that includes heart rate tracking can also be a motivating way to monitor your progress in a new activity and to track the calorie burn improved performance that accompanies your workouts.  You can also use your device to track your activity level as you run your way through your Saturday errands, add in a walk after work, and take the kids to the playground. You’ll find your motivation and your fitness increasing just by getting more daily activity.

Create a New Playlist. No discussion of technology and exercise would be complete without considering the motivating impact of music. You can create custom playlists through online tools (such as Spotify) or access playlists that others have uploaded.

Ready to get started? Web MD has a great article on customizing workout approaches to meet individual needs. Take the time to give it a read, then get moving!

-Joli

About the writer: Joli Guenther is a certified personal trainer, yoga instructor and clinical social worker practicing in and around Madison, Wisconsin. Learn more on the Meet Our Writers page.

 

 

 


Five Benefits of Using Fitness Trackers

It seems like everywhere you look, people are logging their every step wearing fitness trackers. I remember a time when we used to have to drive the route we ran to see how far it we went, and now we can see it all in real time: pace, time, steps, distance, heart rate and even caloric expenditure.

The fitness tracking movement is alive and well and offers a slew of benefits, too. Whether you’re looking to lose a little weight or get active, fitness trackers are leading the way to better health and here’s how they can help you, too.

Accountability. This is a big one for those who need a little push out the door to get moving (especially in the morning). Most fitness trackers (like ViaFit) work with third party apps where you can challenge a buddy to a workout and post your planned sessions to keep yourself accountable to your exercise program. Research has shown that social exercise (whether via a digital support group or live) aids in helping us perform more regular exercise and avoid pulling the cover over our heads to sleep in. Plus, when you do get in that activity, you can share it on social media with your active friends.

 

Image

 

Motivation. Remember how you felt when you earned a gold star sticker in school for accomplishing those push ups? (Am I dating myself?) Another benefit to fitness trackers is the visual progress you see as you log your time moving including seeing how many steps you take during the day and the motivation that comes with that information. On average, it is recommended that we take 10,000 steps per day to be in the healthy, active category of movement.

One of my clients went from 250 steps per day pre-exercise routine to wearing a fitness tracker and logging over 15,000 steps and lost ten pounds without even changing her diet. The numbers allow you to see the reality of your movement, or lack there of and motivate you to get up and get moving during the day. Plus many of the devices include their own apps where you can visually see when you’re the most active during the day and more. Seeing is believing and data is motivating.

Healthy Eating. We all know living a healthy lifestyle involves both regular activity and a healthy diet and trackers offer feature a fuel and hydration log to help you keep track of the quantity and quality of your every day fuel. You can enter your food choices, water intake during the day, and evaluate the quality of your diet to inspire better choices.

Goal Setting. There is nothing more helpful in achieving weight loss and other goals than to have a carrot dangling out in front of you to keep you inspired. One of the key features of fitness trackers is the ability to set goals and achieve them. Whether it is to lose ten pounds or increasing your non-exercise activity (general movement in the day), by tracking your exercise, fuel,  and sleep you are hands on in learning what it takes and how to achieve any goal you set. Goal setting keeps you focused on progress and personal fitness evolution. It’s the difference between wanting to be fit, and actively engaging in a plan to live a fit and active lifestyle.

Tracking your Z’s. The quality of your sleep can effect everything from your metabolism, cravings, energy, mood and safety. Many fitness trackers can also track your sleep patterns, not only showing you how long you slept, but whether it was deep or light sleep throughout the night and how many times you woke up.  Seeing your daily steps and realizing the quality of your sleep is less than optimal can inspire life changing sleep habits, which will improve your life performance.

Although the jury is still out in terms of how accurate all of these tracking devices truly are, they still have a variety of benefits that can inspire you to reach beyond your limits, lose weight, get active and improve your life performance.

Happy Trails.
Coach Jenny Hadfield

Learn more about ViaFit wireless connectivity, available on select Horizon Fitness treadmills, ellipticals and exercise bikes.


Keep Moving through the Holidays

From full schedules to abundant tables, the holidays make it more important than ever to make the time to take care of yourself and your body. That doesn’t mean it’s easy to fit in your workout when the days grow short and the weather turns cold. With your investment in home fitness equipment, you already know that staying fit doesn’t have to mean spending a lot of time away from your family or finding extra hours in an already busy day. If you’re looking to ring in the New Year feeling healthy, try these tips to keep yourself going strong.

Pick an Outdoor Workout. If you enjoy staying active outdoors, don’t let the holiday’s drive you into hibernation. By dressing appropriately (here’s a good guide to get you started), you can continue outdoor running through the winter. You can even use your treadmill, elliptical or indoor cycle to warm up inside before heading out for a run that is shorter than usual but still gives you the benefits of an outdoor workout (and the bragging rights of a hard core winter runner). If winter running just isn’t your thing, consider cross training in another winter sport, such as snow-shoeing or cross country skiing or head out to celebrate the season with a day (or evening) of sledding, skating or time on the slopes. Wondering just how many calories your evening of sledding will burn? Check out this link of calories burned in popular winter activities. Whatever your sport, don’t forget to hydrate before you head out. Winter air tends to be on the dry side and with lower temperatures, dehydration can sneak up on the winter sports enthusiast.

Get Tech Savvy. From scheduling your workouts in your online planner to using the latest GPS app on your smart phone to track your running route, today’s fitness tools can help you with everything from calorie counting to interval planning. You can check out this link for a review of fitness apps that can help keep the life in your winter workouts.

Break Down your Goals. Looking to improve your 5K time or simply stay healthy in 2014? Use your big goals to think about achievements for the month of December that will be manageable well into the new year. Perhaps you see yourself establishing (or continuing) your healthy habit of daily exercise. Or maybe you’d like to take the first steps towards a couch to 5K training program. Whatever your goal, starting now in a manageable way will put you ahead of the January crowd, leaving you with established habits and results by the time New Year’s Eve rolls around.

Treat Yourself to the Right Gear. Whether you’re taking your workouts indoors or you plan on braving the weather, treating yourself to the right clothing and equipment will make all the difference in sticking to your schedule. For cross-training indoor workouts, you already know that your Vision Fitness Equipment will see you through. You can also round out your workouts by investing in a yoga DVD or online class or some simple strength training equipment that can be used to add circuits to your treadmill, elliptical, and indoor cycle workouts. If you’re trying a new outdoor sport, such as downhill or cross-country skiing, check out some of the early season swap sales and second hand sporting good venues. When enthusiasts trade up, you can score a sweet deal on nearly new equipment. If you’re sticking to outdoor winter running, be sure to add reflective clothing and some high traction shoes to your go-to items. You may find that trail running shoes will suit you better at this time of year. These offer increased insulation and tread compared to some of the lighter weight running shoes.